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« Tithing Versus Giving Generously | Main | Intelligence is Linked to Income, but Not to Wealth »

May 14, 2007


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It sounds a good method but presumably you worked out how much life insurance to get by working out the cost of the services - why not just use the cost of the services you'd need to use to replace her work?

I agree your method is more sensible. And why DON'T we, every Father's Day, come up with how much that dad's services in the home and to the children really are worth? I've been reading this value-of-a-mom story since I became a mom 28 years ago. You are right, you can't place a value on love--either from a mom or a dad.

I do think your estimate of what it would cost to replace your wife's services are a bit low, though. Unless you would be hiring a nanny who would mostly deal with the needs of the children (chauffeuring, taking to doctor, helping with homework, etc.), you'd need a good housekeeping service, someone to shop, cook, do the laundry.

We had a friend who had to hire a live-in lady when his wife died, leaving him with five young kids. He needed WAY more help than could be done in an 8-hour day! I'm guessing she put in 12-16 hour work days and then was available if a child needed her in the night.

When our friend and the live-in lady fell in love, she had to move out (for propriety's sake) until they got married!!

Now, THAT was a quickie wedding! :)

Actually, the source of these articles (at least the ones I read) were from, and they do have a calculator for dads. Will there be articles like this on Father's Day? Probably not, since the media wants everyone to believe that dads sit around drinking beer and watching football.

But let's not ignore this fluff just yet. I calculated myself and discovered I should be making $170,000, childless! Where can I pick up my check?

That's actually a great way to calculate, and doing it for my husband makes me think we should have more life insurance on him!

Agree the # is bogus. What is a stay-at-home mom is an entrepreneur and has her own home-based business? Then her earning potential can be either more or less. I would not try to value a stay-at-home mother based on a JOB.

Maybe you should just consider the cost until the next marriage. ;0 Someone did the same for dogs and they came out as bargains too.

What's really bogus is your $35,000 per year estimate. The cost of a cook or personal chef service per year is more than that. I know for a fact that if you had a full-time janitor/laundress/maid at home, you'd pay more than that.

Moms/Wives not only provide the services mentioned above, but they also act as chaffeurs, mediators, computer technicians, teachers, mentors, event organizers, and facilitators. Furthermore, nothing you've stated even includes the value of her services to the husband as a companion/nurse or sexual paramour.

Just goes to show that most people ACTUALLY think that the value of mothering/wifing is nearly worthless. No wonder so many women want to work outside the home. Staying at home means you are undervalued and underappreciated in every single way.

brensgrrl - are you saying that a single parent needs to earn $35,000 a year EXTRA after taxes than one with a stay at home spouse?

FMF was not undervaluing his wife at all, but looking realistically at what MONETARY value (not emotional) her services have. If you died, would your husband hire a personal chef, a maid, a chauffer, and a live-in nanny? I don't know your situation, but most people would only need full-time daycare for their kids and perhaps an occasional housekeeper and a little extra money for takeout more often. This is somewhere in the ballpark of $25k-$35k. That is not undervaluing the role of a stay-at-home spouse, it is a realistic assessment of what would need to be replaced in their absense.

It is insulting to single parents to say that they need an extra $138,000/year just to be even with someone who has a stay at home spouse.

Agree the 138k figure is total crap. My wife only works a couple of days a week and the rest of the time takes care of things at home (we don't have any children). If she weren't shopping for us or doing the housework, I'd have to do it just as I did when I was single. I don't recall paying myself 138k to vacuum the carpet once a week. :)

These types of studies always fail to take into account the choices a housewife gets to make, since she's not an employee. If I were paying someone $138k/year to make dinner, do laundry, etc., then anytime she says she's too tired to do it, I'd hire someone else. It would also make sense to find someone else who can do it cheaper so that I can spend more money on the kids.

As a housewife, you get far more decision making capability than an employee.

I think the $138 figure is bogus, but I am also not too sure about the $35 figure either.

In our family hubby brings home the bacon and I fry it up. I figure this is my nest, and I will take care of it. I don‘t ask for help with my job and he doesn‘t ask for help with his. My hours are longer, my job is more physical and for sure more dirty.

However, being a stay at home mom has benefits. There are not many jobs where you can stop for a nap or coffee break when you want to, and go shopping when you want to. Not many jobs give you the leisure of picking up your sick kids from school or volunteering when ever you want. I think of myself as lucky.

I may not see a paycheck with my name on it and I have made many sacrifices for the sake of my family but it is worth it. I feel very valued by my family. You can’t put a number on the job of a stay home mom, it‘s something each family needs to come up with individually. Personally, I feel like a million bucks. I am not sure how much it would “cost” to replace me and I don’t really care because my family makes me feel irreplaceable.

The life insurance value makes me feel like crap, especially since I homeschool my kids, so throw in teacher (granted they don't make much) on top of everything else. Sure, if something happened to me, my husband will be able to do a great job taking care of the kids needs and feeding them healthy meals, etc. He survived several years on his own before we met and married! But, with kids, things are a bit different. There are things that I do just so he can spend time with the kids in the evenings, etc.

My life insurance is based on what it would take to get my kids a similar type of education that they would receive from me. That was the main thing that was focused on because it would be my husband's toughest thing to meet.

How much am I worth? I don't know in monetary value. I just know that my rewards will one day come in heaven and all along the way I get the joy of seeing my children learn to read, get the excitement of finally catching on to something, and just their hugs and kisses.

It's great if your family makes you feel worth it. But what if your husband reminds you constantly that you "don't work, you stay home." Obviously, I'm not worth that much to him.

Lol the way you guys make is sound is kindve stupid. You might as well figure it this way:

One ounce of pure oxygen is 36.. we have 112 ounces of this in our body.. now add our worth in nitrogen, magnesium,iron.... yeh. I found out im wroth over a million dollars that way. feel better?

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