Registered Nurse

Licensed Practical Nurse Salary Guide 2024: How Much Do LPNs Make?

Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) play a crucial role in the healthcare system, providing essential patient care under the supervision of registered nurses and physicians. Aspiring LPNs often wonder about the potential earnings in this profession. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the average LPN salary, including variations based on location, experience, and industry. Additionally, we’ll discuss strategies to enhance your LPN salary and the benefits associated with pursuing a career in this rewarding field.

What is an LPN?

A Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) is a vital healthcare professional trained to provide essential nursing care under the supervision of registered nurses and physicians. LPNs play a crucial role in the healthcare system, working in diverse settings such as hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and home healthcare. Their responsibilities encompass a range of patient care tasks, including administering medications, monitoring vital signs, dressing wounds, and assisting with daily activities. LPNs serve as a bridge between patients and the broader healthcare team, ensuring that individuals receive high-quality, compassionate care. With a focus on practical nursing skills and a commitment to patient well-being, LPNs contribute significantly to the overall delivery of healthcare services. Their role is both challenging and rewarding, requiring a combination of clinical expertise, empathy, and effective communication to address the holistic needs of patients.

Highest-paying states for LPNs

When considering a career as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), the geographical location of employment can significantly impact earning potential. According to a comprehensive study by Zippia in 2023, the top 10 highest-paying states for LPNs are noteworthy for their competitive salaries within the healthcare industry. Topping the list are states like Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, where LPNs can expect to earn above-average salaries. These states not only offer attractive compensation but often have a higher cost of living, reflecting the correlation between regional economic factors and LPN salaries. Aspiring LPNs should take note of these high-paying states when planning their career paths, as they may provide opportunities for both financial success and professional growth.

RankStateAverage LPN salary10th percentile90th percentile
2Rhode Island$57,622$39,000$84,000
5New Hampshire$57,082$39,000$83,000
6New York$57,056$38,000$83,000
7New Jersey$56,900$38,000$83,000

Highest-paying cities for LPNs

Among the highest-paying cities for LPNs, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics highlights notable locations where these healthcare professionals can command competitive salaries. As LPNs consider their career options, understanding the regional variations in compensation can guide them in making informed decisions about where to practice and thrive in their profession.

RankMetropolitan AreaHourly RateWeekly AverageMonthly AverageAnnual Average
1Napa, CA$36.97$1,478.80$6,407.50$76,890
2San Jose, Sunnyvale, and Santa Clara, CA$36.48$1,459.20$6,323.33$75,880
3San Francisco, Oakland, and Hayward, CA$36.26$1,450.40$6,284.17$75,410
4Santa Rosa, CA$34.22$1,368.80$5,931.67$71,180
5Vallejo and Fairfield, CA$34.00$1,360.00$5,893.33$70,720
6San Luis Obispo, Paso Robles, and Arroyo Grande, CA$33.14$1,325.60$5,745.00$68,940
7Santa Cruz and Watsonville, CA$32.12$1,284.80$5,566.67$66,800
8Seattle, Tacoma, and Bellevue, WA$31.91$1,276.40$5,531.67$66,380
9Sacramento, Roseville, Arden, and Arcade, CA$31.77$1,270.80$5,507.50$66,090
10Carson City, NV$31.47$1,258.80$5,455.00$65,460

Highest-paying industries for LPNs

LPNs find employment across diverse industries, with compensation varying based on the nature of the healthcare setting. According to data from, certain industries stand out as the highest-paying for LPNs. Understanding the dynamics of these high-demand sectors provides valuable insights for LPNs seeking competitive compensation and career growth. The table below presents a snapshot of the highest-paying industries for LPNs based on the latest data.

RankIndustryHourly RateAnnual Average
1Personal care services$31.18$64,840.00
2Office administrative services$30.93$64,330.00
3Insurance carriers$28.73$59,770.00
4Health and personal care stores$28.65$59,590.00
5Junior colleges$28.56$59,400.00
6Outpatient care centers$27.97$58,170.00
7Nursing care facilities (skilled nursing facilities)$25.80$53,670.00
8Home health care services$25.32$52,670.00
9Continuing care retirement communities and assisted living facilities for the elderly$25.22$52,460.00
10Psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals$25.21$52,440.00

LPN salary range by experience

LPN salaries exhibit a range influenced by both educational attainment and professional experience. According to data sourced from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the salary spectrum for Licensed Practical Nurses widens considerably based on these factors. LPNs with a high school diploma or equivalent tend to fall within the lower end of the salary scale, while those with additional education, such as postsecondary certificates or associate degrees in nursing, often command higher compensation. Moreover, LPNs with extensive experience in the field tend to earn salaries at the upper echelon of the range. The following table provides a detailed breakdown of the LPN salary range, offering valuable insights for individuals considering or currently navigating a career in this vital healthcare profession.

%YearsEmployedAnnual Salary
10%Less than a Year64,124Under $37,150
15%2 – 4 years96,186$37,150 – $46,410
25%5 – 9 years160,310$46,410 – $48,070
25%10 – 14 years160,310$48,070 – $59,770
15%15 – 20 years96,186$59,770 – $63,790
10%20+ years64,124Above $63,790

Factors affecting LPN salary

Several factors contribute to the variation in Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) salaries, reflecting the complexity of the healthcare industry and the diverse roles LPNs play within it. Understanding these factors is crucial for both aspiring and practicing LPNs to navigate their career paths effectively. Here are key factors that can influence an LPN’s salary:

1. Geographical location

Salaries for LPNs can significantly differ based on the region or state of employment. Urban areas and states with higher living costs often offer higher wages to attract and retain healthcare professionals.

2. Education and certifications

LPNs with additional education, certifications, or specialized training may command higher salaries. Continuing education, pursuing advanced degrees, or obtaining certifications in specialized areas can enhance an LPN’s marketability.

3. Experience level

Like many professions, LPN salaries tend to increase with experience. LPNs with several years of practice often earn higher salaries due to their accumulated expertise and skills.

4. Healthcare facility

The type of healthcare facility where an LPN works can impact salary levels. Acute care settings, such as hospitals, may offer higher wages compared to long-term care facilities or outpatient clinics.

5. Demand for healthcare professionals

Areas facing shortages of healthcare professionals may offer higher salaries to attract and retain skilled LPNs. Regions with higher demand for healthcare services may provide more competitive compensation packages.

6. Specializations and additional skills

LPNs with specialized skills or certifications in areas such as gerontology, pediatrics, or IV therapy may command higher salaries. The ability to perform specialized tasks or work in critical care areas can contribute to increased earning potential.

7. Negotiation skills

An LPN’s ability to negotiate salary during job offers or performance reviews can impact their overall compensation. Effective negotiation, backed by a clear demonstration of skills and experience, can lead to better financial outcomes.

8. Shift differentials

LPNs working non-traditional hours, such as evening, night, or weekend shifts, may receive additional compensation through shift differentials, contributing to an overall higher salary.

9. Economic conditions

The overall economic conditions of a region or country can influence salary levels. Economic prosperity and growth may lead to increased demand for healthcare services, affecting the salaries of LPNs positively.

Understanding these factors empowers LPNs to make informed decisions about their careers, negotiate competitive salaries, and strategically plan for professional development to enhance their earning potential.

How to increase LPN salary?

Increasing your salary as an LPN involves a strategic approach that combines continuous learning, skill development, and effective negotiation. Here are key steps to enhance your earning potential:

1. Advanced education and certification

Pursue additional education to expand your qualifications. Consider advancing to a Registered Nurse (RN) role or obtaining specialized certifications in areas like pediatrics or critical care. Higher education and certifications often translate into increased marketability and higher salaries.

2. Gain experience in high-demand areas

Explore employment opportunities in areas facing a shortage of healthcare professionals. Rural or underserved urban communities may offer higher salaries to attract and retain skilled LPNs. By gaining experience in high-demand regions, you not only contribute to essential healthcare services but also position yourself for better compensation.

3. Continued professional development

Stay abreast of industry trends, technological advancements, and best practices. Engage in continuous professional development by attending workshops, seminars, and training programs. Demonstrating a commitment to staying current in your field enhances your value to employers and can lead to salary advancements.

4. Negotiate your salary

When entering a new position or during performance reviews, be prepared to negotiate your salary. Clearly articulate your experience, skills, and any additional certifications that contribute to your effectiveness as an LPN. Research industry salary standards and be confident in discussing your worth. Effective negotiation can result in a more competitive compensation package.

Remember that increasing your salary as an LPN is not only about financial gain but also about investing in your professional growth and making strategic career choices. Continuous improvement, coupled with a proactive approach to career management, can lead to both personal and financial fulfillment in your role as an LPN.


In conclusion, the LPN salary landscape reflects a dynamic interplay of geographic, experiential, and industry-related factors. Aspiring and practicing LPNs alike should carefully consider the highest-paying states and cities, recognizing that these locations often align with elevated living costs. Moreover, the industry in which an LPN chooses to practice can significantly impact their earning potential. Yet, beyond the financial aspects, the benefits of being an LPN extend to the personal fulfillment derived from making a positive impact on patients’ lives, the prospect of continuous professional growth, and the flexibility that comes with a career in nursing. As LPNs navigate their professional journey, understanding the nuances of salary determinants and strategically leveraging opportunities for advancement will undoubtedly contribute to a rewarding and prosperous career in the healthcare sector.

MedCadre for high-paying LPN jobs in USA

For LPNs seeking high-paying job opportunities in the USA, MedCadre stands out as a beacon of promise in the realm of nurse staffing agencies. MedCadre has earned a reputation for going beyond industry norms by offering LPNs competitive salaries that surpass the average, making it an enticing option for those looking to elevate their earning potential. This agency not only recognizes the invaluable contributions of LPNs but also strives to compensate them accordingly. By connecting LPNs with top-tier healthcare facilities across the nation, MedCadre opens doors to lucrative positions in environments that value and reward their skills.Become a part of our team today, or explore our career opportunities and apply without delay!

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