Fostering Allowance, Fees & Pay With Compass

We often get asked how much do foster parents get paid? We’ve created this page to answer all your pay related questions.

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Foster Care Allowances and Pay

At Compass, we recognise that looking after a child or young person comes with various financial implications.

As a foster carer with us, you’ll get paid a weekly fostering allowance that covers both the daily living cost of your foster child and a professional fee for yourself.

Our foster care allowances help to ease financial concerns, freeing up time for you to focus on doing what you do best – transforming children’s lives.

You will receive significant tax relief as a foster carer.

Earn an average of £460 per week with Compass.

Fees paid every 2 weeks to your bank account.

There are plenty of additional income opportunities.

How Much do Foster Carers Get Paid?

So, how much does fostering pay in the UK? And what is the average pay for foster parenting?

Well, when it comes to fostering, there is no set foster fee. The amount of money for fostering you will receive depends on a range of factors, including the agency you choose, how many children you foster, the child’s individual needs and requirements, the type of fostering you can provide and your own unique skill set.

At Compass, we pay our foster carers on average £370 per week for each child living in their home. Most of our carers support between one and two foster children at any given time, which means that, due to the foster care pay scale in the UK, the actual average weekly foster care allowance is in excess of £460 with Compass.

Not only are our fees are above national minimum rates, they come alongside a range of high-quality training, reward-schemes, benefits and 24/7 support that each of our foster carers benefit from.

Try Our Fostering Allowance Calculator

Find out how much foster care pay you could receive by using our allowance calculator.

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Fostering Allowance Post-Tax Examples


Faiza fosters one child who is aged fourteen. With Compass, Faiza will receive £398 per week.



Louise & Aadan

Louise and Aadan foster a sibling group of children, aged 2, 5 and 12. They receive £1,108 per week.



Nigel & Jack

Nigel & Jack foster a 14-year-old child requiring a therapeutic package of care. They receive £576 per week.



*illustrative example only, based upon standard tax payer.

Fostering Allowance Breakdown

We know that money often isn’t the motivation behind fostering. However, fostering can be a full-on, demanding role at times. While some of our carers continue to work part-time alongside fostering, many of our foster parents leave their previous job behind upon deciding to become a foster carer.

That’s why we pay our foster carers fairly and on a regular basis. This is to help cover the costs of looking after a child, as well as contributing to general household expenses. How much you get will determine the breakdown.

Your fostering payments will be comprised of:

  • A living allowance for the child.
  • A professional fee for yourself that rewards your hard work and dedication.

You will begin receiving your fostering allowance as soon as you take your first child or young person into your care. We’ll pay your fostering allowance electronically, directly into your bank account, every two weeks.

Our Bridge Support Allowance

At Compass, we understand the importance of a stable income – especially throughout the cost-of-living crisis. That’s why we’re committed to supporting our carers every step of the way.

Our Support Payments are offered to newly-approved foster carers who might need to wait a few weeks before taking a child into their care.

Learn more about our Bridge Support Payments.

Earn up to £3,250 by referring a friend

Did you know applicants recommended by our foster carers are up to eight times more likely to become approved to foster? Our foster carers know what it takes to provide outstanding care, which is why we encourage them to get involved in the foster carer recrtuiment process - alongside offering them the opportunity to earn up to £3250 per referral they make!

Find out more about referrals

Different Types of Foster Care Pay

There are plenty of different types of fostering, all of which require different skills, training and expertise. The foster care pay scale in the UK can vary. Generally speaking, how much foster parents get paid a month varies depending on the type of care you’re able to offer, the demand for a certain type of fostering, and your own unique skillset.

For example, the allowance for parent and child fostering can be up to 1.5 times more than the allowance for a standard fostering placement. This is due to the additional space and energy required to foster a parent and child, as well as the additional costs involved.

You’ll also receive a greater fostering allowance if you look after more than one child or young person at a time, though this depends on your capabilities and the spare bedrooms available in your home.

I am really happy with Compass; they are very supportive and caring. My supervising social worker is excellent and a credit to Compass - she, among others, is one reason I wouldn’t leave the agency.

Sarah, Compass Foster Carer

Do foster carers pay council tax?

Because they are considered self-employed, foster carers benefit from a significant reduction in taxes. Thanks to the Qualifying Care Relief tax scheme, foster carers receive a fixed tax exemption of up to £10,000 per year. This is shared equally among all of the foster carers in any one household, and means that they don’t need to pay any tax on the first £10,000 in fostering allowance they’re paid.

On top of this, thanks to fostering tax relief, you don’t have to pay tax on some of your earnings over £10,000. For a child under 11 years old, foster carers don’t have to pay any tax on the fist £200 of their weekly fostering allowance. For children over 11, this figure raises to £250.

Learn more about foster care tax returns.

What benefits can foster carers claim?

As foster carers are considered self-employed, you’ll still be eligible to claim most state benefits as a foster carer. Being a foster carer won’t prevent you from claiming child benefits for your own children and any other children that are dependent on you, as long as you are eligible. However, you won’t be able to claim benefits for any foster children in your care – as you will already be recieving a fostering allowance for their care.

As foster carer, you are entitled to claim means tested benefits, because your fostering allowance isn’t considered income. This means you may be eligible to claim a range of benefits, including:

  • Income Support
  • Carers Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Housing and Council Tax Benefit

We invest in high-quality training for our foster carers

On top of excellent foster care pay, we are proud to invest in the personal and professional development of our foster carers.

We know our children and young people are all unique, with different experiences and circumstances that require bespoke care. We also know that providing personalised care requires a range of skills and expertise!

As a carer with Compass, you will have access to a wealth of training programmes lead by industry professionals.
How much you do is up to you, but we always encourage our carers to continue their training and learning throughout their fostering career.

Learn more about our training

Learn More about Fostering with Compass

At Compass, we work hard to be the fostering agency that’s here for you; we’re more informative, more responsive and more supportive. As a leading independent UK fostering agency, we’re passionate about providing outstanding care to our children and young people.

Learn more about how to become a foster parent or request your digital brochure below to start your fostering journey.