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Father’s Day Index 2017: Dad’s value rebounds to over $26,000 – highest ever

It’s a record-breaking year for Dad, as his “salary” for doing household jobs commonly associated with fatherhood is the highest ever, and so is the amount being spent on gifts for his special day.

The 2017 Insure.com Father’s Day Index finds Dad’s value to be $26,125. After a dip in 2016, Dad’s value is up nearly 6 percent and at its highest amount since the Father’s Day Index began. Dad’s worth around the house is up 28 percent from 2011 when we first calculated his value to be $20,415.

The index calculates Dad’s value based on Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) wages for household duties traditionally associated with fathers. Dad’s value doesn’t include tasks fulfilled by a full-time stay-at-home dad, nor salary from a career outside the house. 

Dad’s value rebound comes at a time when Americans are also spending a record amount on Father’s Day gifts, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation (NRF). In 2017, spending is pegged at $15.5 billion, the highest in the survey’s 15-year history. The average American is now spending $135 on gifts, up from $126 last year

While Dad is worth more than ever, so is Mom, whose worth totaled $67,619 in the Mother’s Day Index – also the most in the history of the index.

The salaries that dipped:

  • Recreation work  -2.3%
  • Assembler  -1.9%
  • Chauffeur -0.8%

All other “jobs” of Dad increased.  The biggest movers are:

  • Teacher (help with homework) + 10.8%
  • Pest control workers   + 9.8%
  • Cook  + 7.5%
  • Plumber  + 7.3%   

Father's Day job values index

Wage data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Father's tasksBLS occupation titleHours per weekWeeks per year2017 mean hourly wage% change compared to 2016Dad's 2017 annual earnings
Barbecuing Cooks 3 52 $11.48 7.50% $1,790
Driving Taxi driver/ chauffeur 9 52 $14.88 -0.80% $6,962
Helping with homework Other teacher/ instructor 10 40 $28.38 10.80% $11,350
Family finances Accountant/auditor 0.5 52 $36.03 7.10% $937
Mowing the lawn, landscaping, snow removal Grounds maintenance worker 2 52 $12.58 6.30% $1,308
Moving furniture Laborers and freight, stock and material movers 2 3 $14.50 6.00% $87
Car Maintenance Automotive service technicians and mechanics 2 10 $18.23 0.70% $365
Coaching a team Athletes, coaches, umpires and related workers 4 10 $21.55 5.40% $862
Scout leader Recreation and fitness workers 5 10 $16.70 -2.30% $835
Assembly of toys, bookshelves, etc. Miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators 3 10 $15.63 -1.90% $469
Pest removal (spiders and all gross bugs) Pest control workers 1 4 $16.23 9.80% $65
Handyman Maintenance and repair worker, general 8 6 $19.93 3.40% $956
Plumber Pipelayers, plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters 2 3 $23.13 7.30% $139
Total earnings $26,125

 

Do Dads do more?

 

One way to increase Dad’s value around the house is to revise the list of tasks he does. This year we kept the same household responsibilities for Dad as we have for the past seven years. Is it time to update the list and add more duties for dad? For example, if we added extra jobs for dad as a trash collector, judge and official IT manager of the house it would help raise his “salary” to over $30,000.

Father's taskBLS occupation titleHours per weekWeeks per yearMean hourly wageAnnual Dad earnings
Break up fights, decide who is at fault and give out punishment Judge 1 50 $39 $1,950
Sets up computers, cellphones and helps with issues Computer and information systems managers 1 45 $43.90 $1,976
Collect trash and puts on curb & occasional trips to the dump Refuse and recyclable material collectors 0.5 52 $14.60 $584
Extra job earnings $4,510
Dad's new total $30,635

What responsibilities of dads might we be missing off our list? Any jobs we have listed aren’t accurate and need to be revised or taken off?  Let us know.

Calculating Dad’s real worth

The real value of a dad can’t be measured by the amount of spiders killed or games coached, but more in the time spent playing catch and hugs given – and that is priceless. 

But a calculation of a Dad’s worth is necessary for the family to make certain they are financially secure if he were to pass away. Life insurance isn’t a topic that is easy to bring up, but an important one for families, especially those with small children, to discuss. According to Census.gov, there are 24.9 million fathers who are part of a married couple and have children younger than 18.

Most fathers have a career outside of the house, and that salary needs to be included when determining how much life insurance to purchase, but the “little” things Dad does around the house also need to be addressed since without him someone else will need to be paid to handle the task.

According to a LIMRA consumer study, 62 percent of families without life insurance say they would be in immediate financial trouble if the primary wage-earner died.  

LIMRA also finds that even those who own a life insurance policy may not have enough to keep the family financially secure. It reports that 48 percent of insured households have a coverage gap of around $200,000. This may be due to families hoping that a group life insurance policy acquired at their workplace is enough, it usually is not.

That is why it’s important to make a financial plan -- one that includes enough life insurance coverage for both parents to stabilize the family if one or both parents were gone. Covering a lost salary is not enough, also think about tasks at home that would need to be covered.

Term life or whole life insurance can help pay for funeral costs, outstanding debt, ongoing living expenses and future needs, such as college tuition, all for a fairly nominal cost. Insure.com’s life insurance calculator can help you determine the needs of both parents so that the family is financially fortified if one or both parents were to pass away.

 

Purchasing life insurance doesn’t have to be hard or expensive

 

Don’t let the fear of being poked and prodded during a medical exam stop you from obtaining a life insurance policy. There are now instant-approval term life insurance policies where a medical exam is not required. If you don’t mind the medical exam, you can go through a longer process and possibly find cheaper premiums.

The cost of life insurance is probably not as much as you think. Year after year studies performed by LIMRA and Life Happens finds consumers overestimate the cost of life insurance, usually thinking premiums are triple what they actually are.

The average cost for a 20-year $250,000 term life insurance policy for a healthy 30-year-old male is around $20 a month. By brown-bagging your lunch a few times a month instead of eating out, which typically costs at least $8 - $10, you’ll have saved up for your life insurance payment – and with that coverage you’ll be given peace of mind as an added bonus.

Find consumer ratings and start shopping with leading life insurance companies with Insure.com's best life insurance companies reviews.

 

Methodology

“Dad’s value” is based on occupational wages from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and does not include a salary from work outside the home. It is calculated using a list of common household tasks that fathers often perform.

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