What Is the Hourly Rate for Child Care?

When looking for a qualified person to watch your child, whether it's full time or for a night out, it's important to pay a fair wage. The rate, however, can vary, depending on many factors.


People who live in large cities or on the west or east coasts of the United States are going to pay more per hour for child care than someone who lives in a small town or the middle of the country 1. As the cost of living goes up, so does the cost of child care 1.

Number of Children

The rate should be higher when the care giver has more children to watch.

Other Expectations

Basic expectations include giving the kids snacks and baths, if appropriate. If you want the care giver to clean the kitchen or do laundry, expect to pay a few more dollars 1.


If your care giver is driving your kids around town for activities, you should pay for all the gas used, whether your car or hers is used 1.


If your care giver has years of experience, expect to pay more for that, as well 1. Also, if your care giver is watching multiples or children with medical conditions and has specific experience with that, it will cost you more.


Here are some examples of a base pay for one child per hour in certain cities 1. Orlando, Florida: $9.50 New York, New York: $13 Los Angeles, California: $11.50 Des Moines, Iowa: $8.50 Jackson, Mississippi: $10.50