A Facility You Might Want to Consider

It is not often I can personally recommend a facility, but I recently interviewed at one I would like to.

The facility is located in southern Mississippi just an hour from the beach. It is a very new facility and all of the buildings are less than 10 years old. It is a beautiful campus and I would have loved to work there. The only reason we didn’t continue to pursue a position there was that at the time they only had a relief position and we would not have been able to bring our little dog to the cottage when we were providing relief, and my wife was worried about her being left at the apartment by herself all the time.

To me the best part of the facility was the administration. The president/executive director grew up in a children’s home and has a special understanding of a children’s home as well as a special connection to the children that come to live in the home. The director of the home, was a houseparent for several years before becoming the director and has a connection and understanding of houseparents that most directors don’t have. The schedule is outstanding, 21 days on and 9 days off. We were told that relief is almost guaranteed and administrators would cover the cottage if they needed to in order for you to get your relief.

I would consider the home long term residential foster care. Many of the kids come at a fairly young age and stay until adulthood. The home tries to make things as normal as they can for the children to include teaching them how to use social media, cell phones, how to drive.

On the flip side you have to know that being a houseparent is still a tough job and you are going to have many challenges. Children do not end up in care, without having some trauma and issues to work through and there will be challenging times. However, I think this home does a pretty good job of helping them work through things. They receive counseling, the educational help they need and an opportunity to build long term relationships with their caregivers.

When we were visiting we met houseparents that have been there for many years. I am not going to publish the name of this facility, but if you are interested in moving to Mississippi and want to work for what I think is a great facility, send me an email and I will tell you who they are.

2019 Houseparent Salary Comparison

I just completed the 2019 salary comparison and it has some mixed results. The top salary has come down some but the bottom salary has gone up. The mean average is only up slightly, but the median average is up considerably. Salaries went up in every region except one, and here in the South they are up considerably. Overall, I would say salaries are up. In addition several facilities are giving incentives, both sign-on and longevity bonuses which also raise overall salaries.


In doing the 2019 salary comparison, I went through my database of all job listings posted on The Houseparent Network in the last 12 months.  If a facility had more than one job listing during that time, I kept only the most recent.  I had 148 different facilities that have posted job listings in the past year (An increase of 15 facilities over last year).  Of those, 78 facilities posted salaries (8 more than last year), the rest posted things like competitive or negotiable, etc.  Stuff I couldn’t work with.


Before I give my numbers here is my disclaimer:
Note: Let me start by saying that this is not a scientific sampling based on all the facilities in the country, but I think it is still a close representation of the average salaries throughout the country. All salaries listed are per individual.  If you are paid as a couple multiply these averages by two to compare it to your salary.  Also, many facilities listed a range of salaries, so I also express my averages as a range.  I am also making the assumption that the salary listed by the facility is the cash salary and not total packageI also suspect that the true average is less than what these numbers indicate, because I suspect that many of the facilities that don’t post a salary are in the lower range. However, you can’t just assume that because they don’t list a salary, their salary is low.  When my wife and I considered coming back and accepted our current position in 2015, we talked to two other facilities that did NOT list salaries.  They were both in the $50,000 range for couples.  The position we accepted was actually lower than both those salaries, but was a better fit for our situation.


You also need to remember that when considering a position there are many more considerations than just salary.  You also have to consider benefits, schedule, living accommodations, and the difficulty of the children you are caring for.  If one facility pays a salary of $45,000 per year and also provides full family health insurance, you will be better off than a facility that pays $55,000 and only pays toward your individual insurance.  In our situation, we were paying over $10,000 a year for family health insurance prior to accepting a previous position, we paid less than a $1,500. That is an instant pay raise of over $9,000. A good retirement plan can also add several thousand dollars to a salary each year. Look at the whole package, not just the salary. That said, let’s get to the numbers.


 

2019

2018

Mean average salary for an individual houseparent

$25,113-26,263 per year

$24,591-26,156 per year

Median average (half the salaries are less, half are more) salary for an individual houseparent

$25,000 per year

$23,660 per year

Mean average of top 25% of salaries using the low single salary column for calculating the top 25%

$33,635-34,177

$33,960-34,932

Mean average of top 25% of salaries using the high single salary column for calculating the top 25%

$32,435-35,319

$32,599-36,738

Mean average of bottom 25% of salaries using the low single salary column for calculating the bottom 25%

$17,813-18,563

$16,927-17,872

Mean average of bottom 25% of salaries using the high single salary column for calculating the bottom 25%

$17,697-18,224

$16,927-17,594

Region 1: Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana Mean Average

$23,607-24,284

$21,789-22,941

Region 2: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia

$29,0143-32,702

$27,193-30,784

Region 3: Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas

$23,750-24,250

$25,029-25,243

Region 4: Washington, Montana, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Alaska, Hawaii

$28,633-31,912

$27,660-30,199

Region 5: Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico

$25,027-25,321

$24,663


 The Top salary is $45,000 which is $2500 less than last year.  The bottom salary is $13,000 per year, which is a $1,000 increase over the bottom salary last year.


I now have the information posted in the members only section and it include additional information from the comparison, such as sorted by state, benefits listed in the job listing, as well as all the raw data, minus the facility name.