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Average Cost Of Raising A Child

Brace yourselves... Kids cost A LOT.

It’s no secret.  Kids are expensive.  It starts when you get that eye-popping bill from the hospital for giving birth. After that it just keeps on keepin’ on.

Each stage of childhood has its own huge costs.  I’m in the formula/diapers phase.  Two kids in diapers.  It’s killing me.  But what’re you gonna do?  I guess give thanks that I don’t have two kids in college.  Or two kids begging for karate or gymnastics classes.

As CNNMoney reports, just providing a child with the basics has become more than most parents can afford.

Can you guess the cost of raising a kid from birth to age 18 for a middle-income, two-parent family?

CNN says it averages out to $226,920 AND THAT DOESN’T INCLUDE COLLEGE.  Those numbers are from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and they’re up more than $60,00 from ten years ago.  According to CNN “just one year of spending on a child can cost up to $13,830 in 2010, compared to $9,860 a decade ago.”

Here’s the breakdown:

Clothing: $13,200

Healthcare: $18,420

Miscellaneous: $19,110

Transportation: $30,900

Food: $36,210

Childcare/Education: $39,420

Housing: $69,660

Every major expense involved with raising a child has skyrocketed over the past decade. As CNN reports, “food prices, in particular, have weighed on parents’ budgets as rising demand for commodities like corn and wheat, along with other factors such as rising oil prices, drought and floods, have made even a box of cereal a pricey proposition.”

Obviously the cost of chauffering your kids around has jumped because of the rising gas prices we’ve all witnessed these past few years. In fact, according to AAA, we’re paying 85% more per gallon than in 2000.

Not to mention the economy that has taken a major beating leaving unemployment near an all-time high and the median household income dropping. This is causing both parents to head to the workplace which leads to higher childcare expenditures.

Although housing generally represents a family’s largest expense, putting more than one child in day care tips the scales.

In 2010, the cost of putting two children in child care exceeded the median annual rent payments in every single state, according to a recent report by the National Association of Child Care Resourceor NACCRRA.
“It defies logic,” said Linda Smith, NACCRRA’s executive director. For Stephanie Serafini, 38, licensed day care for her two children comprises about 30% of her $39,000 annual income. Serafini pays a particularly high rate for care because her oldest son was diagnosed with Asperger’s and ADHD.

What is the largest expense for your family?  Do you sometimes think working isn’t really paying off considering how much you shell out for child care?

For solutions on how to fix the child care crunch and the rising cost of raising a child head on over to CNN.

Image: kidsandbills.com

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