Enquire
Now
Menu
Apply to be a foster carer

Pay and the different types of foster care

The types of foster care each demand different experience, training and skills from a foster carer. We have a framework that sets out how much you will get paid for fostering, depending on these factors.

How much do you get paid for fostering?

Once approved, you’ll receive foster care pay (known as a fostering allowance) in the region of £22,000 a year. For almost all foster carers, this will be tax free and will not affect benefits you’re currently receiving. You will also be eligible for our Bridging Retainer Payments.

However, at the beginning, it’s difficult to estimate an exact figure you’ll get paid for fostering. You might earn more than £22,000 a year for full-time fostering – some types of fostering placement pay more than £35,000 a year. Or you might earn less.

This is because:

● Your skills, experience and situation are unique
● Foster children in your care have different needs
● Certain types of foster care are in demand

For example, we usually want to keep brothers and sisters together in the same family where possible, for example, but this requires a larger home (and energy reserve!) than some foster carers have.

Similarly, foster children with special or complex needs might need a specific skill set that not all foster carers have yet. (Don’t forget, if there’s a particular type of foster care you are interested in, we offer free training.)

Becoming a foster carer is the best thing I have ever done in my life. I put it off for years thinking I would be turned down, but looking back I wish I had done it a lot sooner.

Jack, foster carer

How much do foster carers earn for the different types of foster care?

Below are some examples of different types of foster care and roughly how much a foster carer can earn. The majority of foster carers don’t pay tax, though as a self-employed foster carer you will have to make national insurance payments.

Weekly pay for emergency foster care

Emergency fostering comes at short notice, when a baby, child or young person needs to be rehomed immediately. You can earn more than £400 a week, tax-free, for this type of foster care.

Emergency foster care

Weekly pay for short-term fostering

Short-term (or temporary) foster care is required in the interim before children can be moved to a longer-term family or be returned to their family home. You can earn around £400 a week, tax-free, for this type of foster care.

Short-term fostering

Weekly pay for parent & child fostering

Parents will develop their skills whilst they learn from you over 12 weeks. You can earn around £400 a week, tax-free, for this type of foster care.

Parent & child fostering

Weekly pay for long-term fostering

The child remains with a foster family for several years or up until they are ready to take care of themselves. You can earn more than £400 a week, tax-free, for this type of foster care.

Long-term fostering

Weekly pay for Bridge to Foster (Step Down)

Bridging is a type of short-term foster care which takes place when babies or very young children need a temporary home before moving on to somewhere more permanent. You can earn more than £570 a week, tax free, for this type of foster care.

Bridge to Foster

Weekly pay for fostering siblings

Can you provide a home for two or more brothers or sisters in a stable environment together? You can earn more than £400 a week, per child, tax-free, for this type of foster care.

Fostering siblings

Additional payments

As we mentioned, some types of foster care attract a higher weekly fostering allowance through special circumstances.

Weekly pay for foster children with complex and challenging behaviours

Children might have experienced abuse or neglect, affecting their behaviours, or they may have a learning difficulty or disability. You can earn around £500 a week, tax-free, for this type of foster care.

Weekly pay for foster children who need to be the sole child

Sometimes we need to place a child in a foster home where there are no other children. You can earn up to £600 a week, tax-free, for this type of foster care.


You might already have an idea of what kind of fostering appeals to you. Please get in touch – we can discuss the application process and talk more about how much you will get paid as a foster carer.

Start your fostering journey with National Fostering Group

  • We have fostering agencies all across the UK
  • Over 3,000 carers already part of our family
  • Benefit from our local support groups and social workers
Close
Close