Care Home Assistants Salary Guide

How much does a Care Assistant make in the United Kingdom?

*Figures as accurate as possible on 7th March 2024

Without experience or qualifications, a starting salary for a care assistant in the UK can be £16k. All the figures we will include in this blog are shared with the consideration that some privately run care homes have varying salaries. The more experienced care home assistants can earn around £33k. 

A starting salary can be impacted by several variables: where in the country you are, the size of the care home, the responsibilities expected from the role and whether it’s an NHS or a privately run home. 

Glassdoor, who survey workers in the industry in real time, is currently estimating that the salary bracket for a care assistant is £18k-£23k. They estimate that the average base salary across the country is £20.5k. 

Working out the average salary for a care home assistant includes the variables mentioned above, so different sources will come up with different figures. have conducted surveys based on advertised roles and estimates that the current average is £22.5k.

Pay considerations in becoming a Care Assistant?

There is a National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage with the difference being your age. If you are 23 years old and over you are entitled to the living wage, 22 years and under are in a different bracket and entitled to the minimum wage. These change most years and have London weighting (meaning people living and working in London are entitled to a higher basic salary to match the more expensive cost of living). Please check the government website for further changes, but in April 2024 the National Living Wage will be £11.44.  

Another key factor in how much you can earn is how much you can commit to your job. If you take on a permanent role and sign a contract for an annual salary you can earn a stable income, that will include a pension and all your taxes managed. If you are on more of a flexible term contract you might not be covered for holidays or sick pay, but could get slightly more per hour. 

Some homes may break down the flexible offer to incentivise alternative shift work, e.g. £12.00 per hour on weekdays, £12.50 per hour at weekends and £18.00 per hour on bank holidays. 

When looking for a new position, keep in mind that employers and different homes often label roles differently. It’s always worth looking not just for ‘Care Home Assistant’ positions, but also for ‘Carer’, ‘Care Worker’ or others. 

What is The Starting Salary For A Care Assistant?

For someone new to the profession, an entry-level salary without experience could be £16k. But it only takes a little time to gain more experience and boost that salary. 

What’s The Difference Between Care Assistant Pay In The NHS And Private Sector?

Care homes may be run by private companies, voluntary or charity organisations, or sometimes by local councils. 

The NHS has a rigid pay structure and it’s easier to see that the starting salary is around £16k, but the private sector is much harder to track. It’s not regulated in the same way and there are many variables, but we estimate the starting salary to be around £18-19k and rising from there.

How Can A Care Assistant Boost Their Earnings?

The best way to increase your earnings is to gain more qualifications and experience. With those things in place, you can prompt meetings with your managers to request a salary review or promotion. So, once in post seek out training opportunities and look at how you can take on more responsibilities. Being a good team player and always willing to help will get you noticed. 

The other quick fix is to offer to work overtime, if you’re able to (and the home supports that).  

What Career Paths Can A Care Assistant Take?

A bit like working in a school, there are a lot more roles than just teacher or headmaster. Some teachers are heads of year, run after-school clubs and are directors of different subjects. In a care home, two members of staff can both hold the title ‘care home assistant’, but one might be in charge of afternoon activities or supplier relationships. 

With further experience, you can progress your career by taking on extra responsibilities, making you more essential to the home and earning yourself the title of co-ordinator, supervisor or Lead Care Worker. You can also move into more senior jobs, if you get further qualifications, like managing people or services.

While employed you can develop your skills by training in specific areas, like autism awareness, communication skills or supporting people with dementia. 

If you are looking for your next step up the ladder from your current position, or looking for your very first care home assistant job, Social Care People are here for you today. 

Register as a candidate – Let Social Care People help you find your next rol

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