From bandaging skinned knees to balancing the checkbook to
making sure the kids eat their vegetables, being is a mom is the
mother of all jobs.
Perhaps because they know the demands of "mommying" firsthand,
women place a higher price tag than men on the work that moms do at
home, according to a new survey from Insure.com.
When asked how much they would have to pay someone else to do
their tasks around the house, 56 percent of women -- compared with
62 percent of men -- said under $40,000 a year.
A smaller portion of women than men -- 11 percent versus 16
percent -- valued moms' household work at under $10,000 a year. And
a larger portion of women than men -- 7 percent versus 3 percent --
valued Mom's tasks at $100,000 a year or more.
Determining the cost to replace household tasks performed by Mom
is important for estimating how much life insurance she needs.
Marvin Feldman, president and CEO of the LIFE Foundation, says
every mom needs life insurance coverage, whether or not she earns a
salary outside the home.
How much mothers say they're worth around the
Mom's annual value
|Less than $10,000
|$10,000 to $19,999
|$20,000 to $29,999
|$30,000 to $39,999
|$40,000 to $49,999
|$50,000 to $59,000
|$60,000 to $69,999
|$70,000 to $79,999
|$80,000 to $89,999
|$90,000 to $99,999
|$100,000 or more
"Just because someone doesn't earn a salary doesn't mean that
they don't make significant contributions to the family that could
be costly to replace," Feldman says. "Things like child care,
cooking, cleaning, transportation and other household activities
are all important parts of a family's everyday lifestyle."
Spouses often underestimate the value of those tasks, Feldman
says. Or they assume someone else, such as in-laws, will step in to
provide them if necessary, but that's not something one should
"You must think about whether your spouse could afford to pay
someone else to provide these services in your absence," Feldman
Mom's value dips below $60K
According to Insure.com's annual Mother's Day Index of common
tasks, the 2013 market value of Mom is $59,862, down from $60,182
, and dropping from $61,436 in
. The Mother's Day Index is calculated from Bureau of Labor
Statistics wage data for a pre-set list of household tasks.
(See chart below.)
Mothers rank child care as their most time-consuming task, with
38 percent of women saying that's how they spend most of their
time. Cooking (27 percent) and cleaning (12 percent) were also
ranked among the most time-consuming tasks.
Taking care of the kids ranked as a favorite duty, with 30
percent of moms saying it was the motherhood job they enjoy the
most. Rounding out the top five favorite tasks:
- Cooking: 15 percent.
- Shopping for the family: 15 percent.
- Planning summer activities: 7 percent.
- Yard work: 6 percent.
But moms hate cleaning up, and who can blame them? Among the
most disliked tasks:
- Cleaning up: 27 percent.
- Yard work: 19 percent.
- Family finances: 13 percent.
You'll be doing what?
Insure.com's survey found a disconnect between what men and
women think moms would do with extra time if someone else performed
all their household tasks.
Both men and women think moms would spend extra time with their
families (40 percent of women and 28 percent of men).. But after
that, men and women had widely different ideas. Men figured women
would go shopping, read, go to school or spend time with friends
(in that order).
But moms put shopping near the bottom of the list. After
spending time with family, moms chose visiting museums, parks and
historical sites; exercise or sports; working; and gardening.
The Mother's Day Index 2013
BLS occupation title
Hours per week
Weeks per year
Annual Mom earnings
||Taxi drivers and chauffeurs
|Helping with homework
||Other teachers and instructors
|Taking care of the kids
||Licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses
||Maids and housekeeping cleaners
||Meeting & Convention Planners
|Summer activity planner
||Miscellaneous community and social service specialists,
health educators and community health workers.
||Hairdressers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists
|Shopping for the family
||Personal care aides
||Accountants and auditors
||Grounds maintenance workers
|Fixing up the house
|Finding out what the kids are up to
||Private detectives and investigators
Grand total: $59,862.30
Wage source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
"Mom's value" is based on occupational wages from the Bureau of
Labor Statistics and does not include a salary from work outside
For mothers' and fathers' views on household tasks, Insure.com
commissioned a survey of 500 men and 500 women with children age 12
and under living at home. The survey was fielded in April 2013.