A baby is a bundle of joy, however if you’re getting ready to start a family, that little one will cost you. According to a report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, it will cost an estimated $233,610 over the next 18 years. And that doesn’t include saving for college.
Before becoming nauseated, consider the fact that you don’t need $233,610 on the day your baby is born. Take the time to create a financial plan that can lessen the burden of rearing children. A good place to start is with a spending plan.
Housing and food represent the largest expenditures when it comes to raising kids, with housing accounting for 26-33% of the total cost. The USDA comes up with those numbers by calculating the average cost of an additional bedroom. Other expenditures include transportation, health care, clothes and other incidentals. Creating a spending plan to know where your money is going can help. You’ll see more clearly where you can reduce costs and increase savings. The chart below is an example of how a typical household might spend its money.
The report from the USDA also states that child care and education are becoming much larger expenditures making up about 16% of the total cost. Data reported in a February 2016 survey conducted by Child Care Aware® reveals that the average annual cost of full-time infant care is on the rise. It’s most expensive in Massachusetts at $17,062 and least expensive in Mississippi at $4,822. Visit http://usa.childcareaware.org/costofcare and click on your state to determine average costs where you live.
It may seem too early to start thinking about college, however, according to the College Board College Cost Calculator, in 18 years a public in-state college will cost $153,000. Careful research and planning can position you to be prepared when your “baby” starts college.
Creating a long-term financial plan can be the cornerstone for financial success, whether you’re having baby no. 1 or baby no. 3. Talk to an advisor to develop a financial plan for your family.
Child Care Aware of America, Parents and the High Cost of Child Care 2016 Report, usa.childcareaware.org/costofcare
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Expenditures on Children by Families, 2015, https://www.cnpp.usda.gov/ExpendituresonChildrenbyFamilies
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