LPC Salary Guide 2023 – How Much Do Licensed Professional Counselors Earn?

By psychologyjobs.com Staff Writer

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An LPC (Licensed Professional Counselor) is a mental health professional who provides counseling and therapy services to individuals, couples, and families to help them address and manage a range of emotional and mental health concerns. Learn more about how to become an LPC.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for mental health counselors, which includes Licensed Professional Counselors is $47,660.

Here is approximately how you can expect your earnings to increase as you become a more experienced LPC:

  • Less than 1 year of experience: $45,000 per year on average
  • 1-4 years of experience: $48,000 per year on average
  • 5-9 years of experience: $52,000 per year on average
  • 10-19 years of experience: $56,000 per year on average
  • 20 or more years of experience: $60,000 per year on average

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Which states pay the highest salaries for LPCs?

  1. District of Columbia – $69,700
  2. Alaska – $67,930
  3. New Jersey – $66,010
  4. California – $65,820
  5. Connecticut – $64,440

Which cities have the highest salaries for LPCs?

  1. Vallejo-Fairfield, CA – $83,230
  2. San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA – $74,810
  3. Urban Honolulu, HI – $74,670
  4. Anchorage, AK – $72,500
  5. New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA – $72,300

How can you earn more as an LPC?

Pursue additional training and education

Obtaining a specialized certification can make you more competitive for higher-paying jobs in specific areas of counseling, such as marriage and family therapy, substance abuse counseling, or trauma-focused therapy.

Pursuing an advanced degree such as a master’s in counselingmaster’s in counseling psychologymaster’s in family counseling or a PhD in counseling psychology or a related field can make you more competitive for leadership roles or higher-paying positions, such as a director of a mental health clinic or a professor of counseling.

Specialized training in evidence-based therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), or mindfulness-based therapies can make you more competitive for positions that require expertise in these areas.

Look for opportunities in high-demand areas

Certain geographic areas or settings have a greater demand for mental health services, and thus may offer higher salaries to attract qualified professionals.

As noted above there are a number of cities with average LPC salaries of $70,000+ however if we look at the 5 lowest paying cities where the average LPC salary is just $30,000-$40,000 then it’s clear that geography plays a clear role in your career earnings. You will of course need to find a balance as many high demand areas may have a higher cost of living.

Gain more experience

This one is hard to shortcut but with more years of experience, you may become eligible for more advanced roles with higher salaries, such as a supervisor, program director, or clinical director.

The data shows that becoming a licensed professional counselor will likely mean you enjoy a progressively higher salary over the lifetime of your career.

How do LPC salaries compare?

Licensed Professional Counselors follow a very similar educational and training path as a Licensed Marriage and Family TherapistAddiction CounselorLicensed Clinical Social Worker and Licensed Mental Health Counselors so how do LPC salaries compare to these roles?