This site has truly been a godsend to me over the last few years! My husband of eight years and I live in northern Florida; my mom(84)has Parkinson’s and has lived with me for 13 years. I have MS, my husband is retired with cancer in remission. My husband and I are both military vets; dad was a vet so mom has medical covered and enough income to cover most of her expenses. It’s a stretch—- but we are ok.

I am interested in this community’s opinions on the following email conversation regarding my request for an aide. My request offered $12/hr plus gas and mileage whenever the aide transported my mom and overtime for hours over 40 hours/week. And yeah, in re-reading my response, I can “hear” my oh-so-polite snippiness. [respondent to my request]:

“For 2 days a week(12 hours) plus one weekend a month(12 hours) then you stated SOME overnights......this is NOT full-time hours therefore your rate should be a minimum of $20.00 per hour!!!! I am NOT applying for this position but this is ridiculous!!!”

[me]: “Good Evening, [#####] Firstly, thank-you- I have found that oftentimes the most critical feedback is the most valuable. You and I are around the same age-- I wonder if you are in charge of your mother's or mother-in-law's care? If so, how do you finance her care? If that's not a concern- honestly I'm envious ! After reading your email regarding the amount of money we're offering for the hours we need, I went back and re-read my job posting. I believe the amount we're paying is fair--and yes it's part-time. And it's an excellent opportunity; our current main full time caretaker started as a part time aide and has earned raises over the years. Additionally, we give bonuses, paid sick days, paid holidays off ( Thanksgiving, Christmas, News Years, etc.) and pay double time when one does work (on a volunteer basis) a holiday. Regards, “

A CNA is paid about $10 an hour in a facility. Private agencies charge more but the CNA doesn't receive it. I would say $15 an hour if u find someone privately. In my area LPNs in facilities get paid $3O an hr.
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Reply to JoAnn29

Thanks for your insight! Yep we pay the FICA, etc; and we do have workman compt. insurance. The number of hours for our part time position would be 32 hrs in a week —- the rates I see offered on the job boards here for private hires range from $10/ hr to $13/hr. With regards to “...not flipping burgers,” I am kinda sensitive about any suggestion that I don’t value what anyone in the caretaking arena ( family members, agencies, hired aides etc.) does in helping our loved ones. I, all of us on this forum, KNOW what it takes and the sacrifices it requires to ensure a loved one is safe, kept as healthy as possible, and feels loved. While I do have my times of “ sure would be nice if at least ONE of my siblings could pitch in ...” I’m at peace with what needs to be done.
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Reply to SmileCryLaugh

It's easy enough to go on job sites to see what CNAs are earning in your area. Keep in mind that those working in facilities are likely also getting benefits so those doing home care would expect a higher wage. I would be suspicious of anyone willing to work for an amount significantly lower than average.

(edit)My brief web search shows CNAs in facilities earning $11.50 - $13/hr.
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Reply to cwillie

First, thank you, your husband and your father for their service; I always like to try to help Vets if I can (my father was a WWII Vet), but I'm not sure I can offer much.

Based on the research I've done, an aide working through an agency might actually be paid about 1/2 of the agency's fee. I paid $25/hour to the agency, but of 3 aides, only one was competent and worth even more than she was paid. I don't know the specific rate, but I have a vague recollection that it was somewhere around $12 - 14/hour.

I'm a bit confused about the hours though. Is this in fact a full time (35 -40 hours) per week position? If so, as FF notes, as an employer you would have overhead, which could factor into the hourly rate. However, if the employee is an independent contractor, then you could afford to pay more. (There are liability issues to address with either option).

If you found a real gem and really wanted to hire her, I suppose you could go up to $20/hour. I don't think it's unreasonable for someone who's top notch. But I don't think I would consider it for someone who responds with a snide e-mail.

Have you talked with your mother's VA social worker? I've found them to be very, very helpful. There might be a program for which your mother would qualify that would provide an aide, paid for by the VA as part of a benefit package.
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Reply to GardenArtist

They are not flipping hamburgers - they are taking care of your mom. In my dad's rural area the going rate was $25 per hour. This is not about whether or not you can afford it but what the going rate is. I have to pay my son's babysitter more than you are offering for home care.
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Reply to Kimber166

You most likely will also have to pay FICA, Medicare and unemployment taxes if the person is being not being paid "under the table".
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Reply to AlfredR

SmileCryLaugh, when it was time for my Dad to hire caregivers to help him I contacted a professional caregiving Agency, which was licensed, bonded and insured. Plus they had workman's comp in case one of their employees got hurt on the job.

The rate was $30/hour with a higher rate for weekends. Plus if the caregiver used his/her own car, then there was a mileage rate. Now in my area, this was the norm for Agency caregivers who were already vetted. Plus if one could not make it to his/her scheduled time, the Agency quickly found someone to fill in. And they handled the payroll.

Yes, it was quite expensive, but my Dad had saved for this rainy day, and boy, it was pouring out there. This was a major eye opener for the cost of elder care. The Agency sent a variety of caregivers out, and eventually Dad choose the ones he really had a lot in common and who understood his sense of humor.

Please note, if you hire a person who is an independent contractor, you would need to purchase workman's comp insurance from your insurance carrier.
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Reply to freqflyer

What would the aide have to do for your mother? Lifting, turning?

Do you have liability coverage?
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Reply to CTTN55

Dear SmileCryLaugh,

This is a delicate situation. I can understand its hard to find the right balance between a fair wage in exchange for help. I think it really depends on where you live and the current economic conditions. And the experience of the person you are hiring. I would want to have a good rapport right from the start because this person is entrusted to be in your home and with the care of another human being.

I hope others can add more with their experience.
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Reply to cdnreader