Objectives: To elicit willingness-to-accept (WTA) values for informal care based on the preferences of informal carers and noncarers.
Methods: Two surveys were conducted with a sample of carers (n = 202) and a sample of noncarers (n = 200). Individuals in both groups were asked three questions in which they had to state the minimum monetary compensation they would require (WTA) if they had to look after a person described in a hypothetical scenario for one extra hour per day. Furthermore, carers were asked for the compensation they would demand if they had to be in charge of their actual care recipient for one extra hour per day.
Results: No significant differences were found between the distributions of carers’ and noncarers’ WTA values. Overall, respondents’ valuations were sensitive to and consistent with their preferences over the tasks to be carried out in the extra hour of informal care. On average, carers required a lower monetary compensation for one extra hour taking care of their loved one (mean/median WTA values €5.2/€4.5) than if they had to devote that time to look after the hypothetical care recipient (mean/median WTA values €6.4/€5.5). More than half of the carers stated the same value under the two caring situations, which suggests that carers’ WTA values were influenced by their own experience providing informal care.
Conclusions: Our results show that it is feasible to derive a monetary valuation for informal care from the preferences of noncarers.