What Does it Cost to Hire a Security Guard?

Security is a top priority for many businesses. It can be an especially big concern for smaller companies that may wonder if they have the funds to hire a full-time security guard.

Likely, you’ll be hiring guards through guard companies, who will set the pricing and contracts. Usually, a security guard is an employee of the guard company they work for, but you’ll be paying for their services.

When hiring a security guard, it's important to consider how much you should pay them. You’ll want to consider the type of security service your company needs, and the quality of the person you want. 

The question of security guard cost is one that many business owners ask themselves when they are trying to decide how to budget their security costs. In this blog post, we will talk about the different costs of a security guard and how it may affect your bottom line.

Our aim is to give you a basic understanding of pricing and responsibilities, to help you choose a good guard company with fair pricing and quality service.

Woman security guard on duty watching a crowd of people

Pricing Strategies:

Whether you run a small business or a large corporation, knowing the different pricing strategies can help you figure out how much to pay your security guards, and which guard company is right for you.

- Fixed Hourly Rate: This is a common approach for small businesses when hiring security officers and may work best in situations where the cost of providing that service has not been determined yet or if it's still too early in the project lifecycle for those costs to be incurred.

- Variable Hourly Rate: This pricing strategy is a good option for businesses that want to directly control the cost of their security services. The tradeoff here may be higher administrative costs or more time spent on tracking and reporting security hours, but it might work well for you if those tasks are already part of your business process.

Hands floating around dollar sign

Cost Factors:

In general, the impact of security guards on your budget is determined by a variety of factors including local laws, guard experience, and labor market conditions.

- Labor Market Conditions: The cost for security can range from $20 to over $40 an hour based on regional labor market conditions and local economic conditions.

- Local Laws: Security guards should be licensed in most jurisdictions, and some jobs may require security to have a specified degree of training or certification before they can work on the job.

- Experience Level: In addition, an experienced security guard is likely to cost more than one with less experience; for example, a highly skilled security guard  may cost $30-50 an hour, while less experienced security guards are often available for as low as $20-25.


Security Guard Cost:

The cost of a security guard can vary based on the type of job and what is handled by other staff members. For example, if you have someone else handling scheduling or doing some level of  building security, then the cost of a security guard will be lower.

Generally, for a high quality, experienced security guard in the US, you should expect to be paying around $25-40 an hour. If they provide specialized services or have additional important skills this number can increase to as high as $50-80 an hour.

Typically, for a lesser trained security guard in the US you should be paying no more than about $20 per hour.

A good way to determine the quality of the individual you are looking to hire is by checking the reviews of the guard company you’ll be hiring from, or get a reference for a reputable guard agency.

We recommend choosing higher quality guards with proper certifications and solid experience. While it might save you a few dollars to go with an unproven security guard company, choosing a quality agency will provide peace of mind, and save you a potential headache.

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