Church custodians hold an important role in the operation of a church. Their work provides a clean and welcoming environment for worshippers and the on-going ministry of the church. They may be hired by the church council or trustees. Depending upon the size of the church, the custodian works alone or with a team. Although some custodians work on a volunteer basis for a church, most earn a salary that is competitive with other custodial positions.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean hourly wage of building cleaning workers in 2010 was $13.38 with a mean annual wage of $27,830. Salaries for church custodians may be higher, though. According to Simply Hired, the average annual pay for church custodians in June 2011 was $35,000. Churches generally pay wages for custodians and other employees according to local standards. If you are trying to set a wage for a new church custodian position, check with other nearby churches, schools and businesses to find the prevailing rate.
The size of a church building is a factor in determining the custodian’s income. A custodian can clean approximately 2,500 square feet per hour, according to a report in Christianity Today. This figure is based on normal soiling and average obstructions in the building. By dividing the number of square feet in the building that need to be cleaned by 2,500, a church can determine how many hours it will take their custodian to clean each time. Using this data, a church can figure out whether it needs to hire a full-time or part-time custodian for cleaning the church.
A custodian might also be responsible for building maintenance, grounds keeping and security. If the job requires experience, special training or certification to work with certain heating systems, an employee may be able to negotiate a higher wage. A custodian who supervises other workers or negotiates with contractors might also earn more pay. The duties of the custodian should be clearly described at the time of hiring to avoid later misunderstandings.
Benefits and Extra Pay
Benefits, such as health insurance, vacation and retirement plans, vary greatly among churches. Some churches provide a benefit plan established by their regional or national denomination offices. Like wages, benefits often follow the usual practice in the community. Custodians generally earn extra pay for cleaning after special events, such as weddings and funerals. These extra fees might range from $100 to $175. If you are considering a job as a church custodian, inquire about whether you will receive compensation for these additional duties.
- U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment Statistics
- Simply Hired: Average Church Custodian Salaries
- Christianity Today; The No-Sweat Way to Clean; Robert Welch; May 1, 1999
- Woodland Heights Baptist Church: Wedding Policies
- Commission for Leadership Development, Massachusetts Conference, United Church of Christ; Compensation Guidelines for Church Sextons and Custodians; 1999
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