If you’re wondering how much does it cost to become a life coach, this is the guide for you.
Below, we’ll outline the key costs of setting up a life coaching business, including a life coach certification cost.
So, let’s dive in.
- Many life coaches choose to avoid traditional startup costs by offering online coaching from their homes.
- Either way, it will be essential to invest in a web-connected device, business registration, website hosting, business software and marketing.
- Life coach certifications accredited by the International Coaching Federation (ICF) are considered an essential purchase by most life coaches.
What Do I Need To Be A Life Coach?
Technically, you only need an internet connection and a web-connected device to become an online life coach.
However, to be a successful coach, it’s likely you’ll need to pay for a few more things.
Life coach certification programs
A life coach certification program proves you’re qualified to deliver high-quality life coaching sessions.
Estimated costs: $2,000 – $14,000.
At the very least, this will usually include registering your business name and obtaining a business license. However, the process of setting up a limited liability company varies depending on where your coaching practice is based.
Estimated costs: $300.
Website hosting and domain costs
If you want a professional-looking website, that’ll cost money too. You’ll have to pay for hosting and a domain name at the very least. These are available for free, but most serious business owners upgrade to paid services.
Estimated costs: $7 – $22 per month.
The most effective way to attract new coaching clients is by spending money to market your business. Once you’ve found a profitable advertising strategy, you can scale it and attract new clients at will.
Estimated costs: Perhaps you’ll start with $5-10 per day on social media ads.
Most coaches choose to invest in software to help with the day-to-day organization of their business. There are valuable resources available to help professionals in the life coaching industry.
Estimated costs: $8/month for scheduling software. $12.50/month software for video-call software and hosting free webinars.
If you decide to work from an office, you’ll face a couple of extra expenses:
You’ll have to pay ongoing rental costs and ongoing costs to decorate your office.
Estimated costs: Anywhere from $2-$50 per square foot per month depending on the location.
This isn’t compulsory for coaches, but basic liability insurance can help give you peace of mind, especially when you have your own office.
Estimated costs: $60 per month.
Is Life Coach Certification Worth It?
Most of your potential clients will understand the importance of hiring a certified life coach. Any online guide on how to find the best life coach will recommend choosing one.
A life coach certification provides evidence that you’ve been through the necessary life coach training. It proves you’re qualified to provide professional excellence within your life coach program.
There’s already a huge supply of certified life coaches out there, and they’ll be competing with you for clients. The only way to reach your earnings potential as a coach is to invest in a life coach certification program.
Provided you’re serious about your professional coaching career, a life coaching certification should pay for itself by attracting so many more clients to your business.
How Much Does It Cost To Become A Certified Life Coach?
There are many different life coach certification programs out there. However, I would recommend only investing in those accredited by the International Coaching Federation (ICF).
The ICF is widely recognised as the premier body of the life coaching industry body, and one that sets the strictest standards when it comes to accrediting life coach training programs. To learn more about this, see my guide on the ICF core competencies here.
The bottom line is: when potential clients see you’ve got a certification from an ICF-accredited program, they’ll be left with no doubts about the quality of your coaching practice.
How Much Does A Coaching Program Cost?
Your goal should be to become an ICF associate certified coach. I’ve created a list of the best ICF-accredited life coach certification programs, which you can find here. The full program cost of the courses ranges from $2,000 up to $14,000. Most of the courses offer payment plans.
Best Life Coach Certification
There are many different ICF-accredited life coach training programs available, each with their own pros and cons. You can check my guide on the Best Life Coach Certifications to learn more and select the best ICF-accredited coach training program for you.
Life Coach Certification Online Cost
Some ICF-accredited life coach training courses offer in-person training, some offer online training, and some a mixture of both. This would appear to have little impact on the price of the training program though. It’s worth mentioning that financial aid or scholarship opportunities are rarely available with these courses.
Is Free Life Coach Certification Worth It?
There are various free certification programs out there. They might teach you a few things about the coaching experience, various coaching techniques or how to run a better coaching practice. However, these courses won’t be ICF-accredited. So, prospective coaches won’t get the reputational boost of being an ICF-certified professional coach.
How About Ongoing Life Coach Training? Is That Worth It?
A coach will need to continue to clock up a minimum amount of observed coaching hours to remain certified. During these extra training hours, they’re essentially being evaluated by someone from the coaching body.
They also have the option to undergo advanced training and obtain a higher class of coaching certification. The three classes of coaching certification offered by the International Coach Federation (ICF) are Associate, Professional, and Master.
You can expect to splash out four figures on these extra certification programs. However, I have met plenty of coaches who say it’s worth the money.
An advanced program like this often contains lifetime access to valuable business education via on-demand video. On top of that, those with a master life coach certification will be able to stand out from the competitors for being more experienced. Plus, they’ll often be able to get away with charging higher fees as a result of completing that additional coaching certification program.
A life coach might also choose to invest in additional training if they decide to specialize in a particular niche such as business coaching. Many coaches are able to charge extra after choosing to specialize because there are less specialist coaching programs for clients to choose from.
How Long Does It Take To Become A Life Coach?
Technically, you should set up a life coaching website and start charging people for your coaching programs today.
However, as we’ve discussed, you’ll need to obtain a coaching certification to stand a realistic chance of becoming a life coach who consistently attracts clients.
As such, the amount of time it takes to set up your coaching business will mostly depend on the length of your life coach training program.
ICF-accredited coaching programs typically take between 6 to 12 months to complete, although there are some longer ones and some are self-paced. However, this doesn’t always include the training hours which are mandatory to become a professional certified coach.
Once you’ve got your professional certification, you’ll need to set up your coaching business, market it and attract your first clients.
Don’t try and rush this process, even if your training course is self-paced. The most important thing is that you absorb the information needed to offer incredible transformation services for your coaching program. Don’t underestimate the importance of this personal foundation. You’ll have the rest of your career to profit once this is in place.
How Much Should I Charge For Life Coaching?
When deciding how much to charge for their services, most self-employed people will consider the cost of setting up their business and their ongoing expenses.
However, this shouldn’t be the only thing you consider when deciding how much to charge for life coaching.
An important point to consider is how much other life coaches in your area are charging, and how your coaching program is likely to compare to theirs.
Make sure to compare with coaches in your niche too. Those offering niche coaching – such as a health coach or business coach – can often charge more due to a lower supply of their expertise.
The amount of expendable income of your target audience should also be considered. You can learn more about how much to charge in my guide on Life Coach Prices – A Complete Guide.
Life Coach Salary
Since the majority of life coaches are self-employed, their annual earnings can vary significantly. It will depend on how many clients they can attract and how much they decide to charge for their services.
Some coaches will charge hourly, while others offer their coaching sessions as part of monthly, quarterly or annual packages. You can discover how that tends to work in my guides on How To Charge For Life Coaching and Life Coaching Fees & Packages.
If you want an estimate of the average life coaching salary in different parts of the world, you can find that in my life coach salary guide.
Are You Ready To Become A Life Coach?
I hope this guide has taught you everything you needed to know about becoming a life coach and how much it’s likely to cost.
As an experienced coach, I only have good things to say about this career choice. It’s incredibly rewarding to launch your own business and help others with their personal growth. I was able to grow a fantastic professional network throughout my career too.
Best of luck!