/Why Children Are So Expensive

Why Children Are So Expensive

More and more Americans are choosing to have fewer children—or delaying the childrearing process. Roughly one in five U.S. women currently don’t have children.

In fact, there may soon be more elderly people in America than children—for the first time in U.S. history.

Why? Raising a child is expensive! Between 2000 and 2010, the cost of raising a child increased by 40 percent. American parents spend an average of $233,610 on child costs from birth until the age of 17, not including college. (College tuition can double that cost.)

Here are some childcare costs you probably didn’t know:

A typical middle-class family spent nearly $13,000 a year per child. The money can be broken down like this:

  • Housing: 28 percent
  • Food: 18 percent
  • Childcare: 16 percent
  • Transportation: 15 percent
  • Health care: Nine percent

Expenses for a baby delivery can range from $3,000 to nearly $40,000, depending on the type of procedure. The average cost falls between $5,000 and $10,000.

American families spend an average of $500 to $1,000 per season on sports and other extracurricular activities.

Keep these costs in mind! If you’re thinking about having a first or another child, consider whether your budget is ready for it.

This is not to say that raising a child isn’t worth it. Parents generally report greater satisfaction with their marriage and family life if they have at least one child.

But it’s not for everyone. Plan accordingly.