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Why Does Life Coaching Cost so Much?

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Why Does Life Coaching Cost so Much?

September 7, 2011      In The Business of Life 3 Comments

Coaching costsOne of the most frequent questions I get as a life coach is something regarding how much life coaching costs.  Why does life coaching cost so much?

My comment is always, it really doesn’t.  I know that sounds a bit harsh but it is true.  Here are some numbers.

Marriage/Family Therapist – $85 p/h

Psychologist – $115 p/h

Doctors – $125 p/h

What is not calculated into most of these figures is the “off-the-clock” time and additional fees that may go into these professions.  For most professionals there are also the expenses of licensing and/or certification, insurance, professional ethical board memberships, etc…

That being said, why is it that most life coaches charge anywhere between $100 on up to several thousand dollars per hour?

Why Does Life Coaching Cost so Much?

The Pain Principle

Most life coaches will tell you that high life coaching costs are necessary because people will not make a positive changes in their life unless they have put up enough money that they can’t afford not to make coaching work for them.  The pain of losing all that money without getting something out of it causes them to make greater progress in their coaching program.

There are a couple of problems with this theory.  The amount of money a person can comfortably lose varies greatly with the person.  Yet, most life coaches do not work on a sliding scale (some do though) adjusting their coaching costs based on the individual.

The second problem with this theory is the fact that, if it truly worked, one could just put the money up as collateral for success with someone they know.  “Here Aunt Sally, if I achieve success within 6 months, I want this money back.  If I don’t, you can keep it”.  I don’t know of too many people this would work with.

The Quality Principle

Others will tell you that you get what you pay for and highly qualified coaches are fully capable of making a positive change in your life thus being able to demand high life coaching costs.

Life coaches with a high success record do have the right to ask for a higher coaching fee.  However, a higher fee does not mean that a life coach automatically has a high success record.  Until you begin to work with an individual, you really have no way of knowing if their success will translate with you.  Each person is unique and coaches are not meant to work with every potential client.  Therefore, those life coaches with high success records are likely to be able to identify which clients they would best work with and be able to help succeed based on their manner of coaching.  They only choose to work with those clients.

The fact is, most life coaches set their fees based on where other life coaches are telling them to set their fees.  It becomes a sort of collusion among the coaches.  The unfortunate piece to this is that many coaches are inclined to charge different amounts but other coaches “coach” them through their “negative” thoughts around charging higher fees.

Sometimes, higher fees are simply a way for everyone, except the clients, to make more money.

For an alternative to high life coaching costs, please check out our life coaching membership.





Nicole Bandes

Nicole has scaled her own personal mountain to climb out of ordinary. For over 20 years, Nicole Bandes has studied the most effective methods to increase happiness and success in her own life and in business. She has gone on to helped thousands of people in their own personal journeys to reach their goals. Contact Nicole if you are ready to stop being ordinary and have a guided tour to reach your summit of success.

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3 Comments so far:

  1. Lach says:

    I think the professional fees you suggested here are pretty conservative, Nicole. A Doctor’s appointment can easily cost $50 for 10 minutes. That’s about $300 an hour. A specialist is more than double that. Professional services in many industries often start at over $100 per hour and $200–$400 per hour is not unusual. There’s a range of factors that contribute to this, but an important one is simply the basic cost of doing business. Every business has expenses (marketing, administration, overheads) which have to be factored into the cost of the chargeable time somehow or other. As an independent coach / consultant you need to run the numbers to see how many hours of effort actually go into selling that 1 hour of coaching. It’s not as expensive as it seems by a long way.

  2. Nicole Bandes says:

    Hi Lach,

    Thanks for your comments. I pulled the numbers from a national database. I was not factoring in specialists which generally require at least two additional years of education over and above the general practitioner.

    I don’t disagree that every business has a cost of doing business and that those costs tend to be figured into the fees. Fortunately, there are wonderful solutions to many of these challenges that allow for the savvy entrepreneur to cut fees and still make an excellent profit, thereby opening up the opportunity to a larger population that may not have otherwise been able to afford the services provided.

  3. heidi says:

    I really am lost in my life, right now. I don’t have the money I used to have and really won’t have any til this fall, when I go back to school. That is depending on if my husband gets promoted again and we get transferred to a different state. But I have always been curious about life coaches. Haven’t had much luck with help from therapists. Just reaching out to maybe getting my life, back and then my husband’s. Tired of not knowing how or who to reach out to help in certain situations.

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