How much they pay hourly for Psychiatric Techs? DC-MD-VA area


Hi! everyone! I just recently graduated nursing May 2011. Had an interview and it went really well, next day took the nclex and FAILED! Well, the hospital really wanted me to work as an RN.

They gave me an offer for $32.50/hour as an RN effective next week. Well, I contacted them telling I don't have license yet and will need to retake in December 17 but willing to work as a tech for the mean time. I thought she will red flag me or throw my application in the trash can but then she sent me a revised offer- this time as a psychiatric technician for $13/hour. My heart just dropped. It seems too low. I do have a BS in psychology. But I guess I should just suck it up until I get my license? Or can I negotiate the price up to 14.50? I just don't know how to do this. I have never been offered less than $14 ever.. just now :( its just not enough for day care and for the bills to pay. I am staring at the offer right now and wondering if I should just accept, decline or negotiate. She did say another option is to take the orientation as RN in December.

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.

Unfortunately that is about the average from what I have heard from coworkers in MD and DC. I'd consider taking the job to buy yourself some time while you retake and hopefully pass NCLEX. It sounds like you could probably switch over to a RN spot when you do. FWIW $32.50 is a good starting rate for a new grad. The new grads I work with at a magnet hospital are only being paid around $24. Good luck.

Specializes in Psychiatric Nursing.

I think you should take it. December is just around the corner (like month away). At least you get your foot in the door. Once you have the license, they could just promote you to a RN position. $32.50/hour is a good starting rate for a new grad.


199 Posts

You are going to be a nurse getting $32 an hour, you are lucky they even gave you this position. Stop worrying about the pay and concentrate on passing your boards. Dont bother them and ask for a dollar more, it seems ungrateful. Good Luck on the NClex

allnurses Guide

Hygiene Queen

2,232 Posts

I started at $13 (with a long CNA background) as a tech in 2005.

Our BHA's (have their bachelor's in psych) started out at $15.

I think the pay off in December is worth the $14/h now. You will have your foot in the door and would only need to transition into your new role.

You will need to be as frugal as possible but December is coming quick.

I completely agree with Linsmirn. Asking for anything more seems unappreciative! Please dont do it...Take the cut for a short while and concentrate on passing the nclex!


1 Post

Hello, i'm interested in Psych nursing and the highest offer I have so far is about $50,000. pls which hospital/facility is willing to pay you $32/hr?