From child care to college, the high cost of having kids - Fox 2 News Headlines

From child care to college, the high cost of having kids

Posted: Updated:
  • Arizona HeadlinesMore>>

  • Bullhead City Police searching for missing 8-year-old girl

    Bullhead City Police searching for missing 8-year-old girl

    Police in Bullhead City are receiving help from the FBI and the National Center for Missing Exploited children after a child went missing early Tuesday morning.Authorities are searching for 8-year-old Isabella Grogan-Cannella, who was last seen wearing a green tank top and dark colored shorts.
    Police in Bullhead City are receiving help from the FBI and the National Center for Missing Exploited children after a child went missing early Tuesday morning.Authorities are searching for 8-year-old Isabella Grogan-Cannella, who was last seen wearing a green tank top and dark colored shorts.
  • Stolen trailer returned to youth group

    Stolen trailer returned to youth group

    A thief stole a trailer full of sporting goods that meant a lot to a group of kids in north Phoenix.One of those kids made a discovery that got those items back.All of the equipment was returned back where it belongs at The Refuge Youth Center.
    A thief stole a trailer full of sporting goods that meant a lot to a group of kids in north Phoenix.One of those kids made a discovery that got those items back.All of the equipment was returned back where it belongs at The Refuge Youth Center.
  • GCU expansion plan has some pleased and others upset

    GCU expansion plan has some pleased and others upset

    Grand Canyon University officials may get an earful tonight from residents living near the expanding campus.The multi-million dollar expansion would see Grand Canyon University building east with new classrooms, student housing, and parking lots.
    Grand Canyon University officials may get an earful tonight from residents living near the expanding campus.The multi-million dollar expansion would see Grand Canyon University building east with new classrooms, student housing, and parking lots.

It never ceases to amaze me what my friends spend to raise their children. Between the child care, the private schools, and clothing, it's no wonder so many parents both work.

The Department of Agriculture estimates the average cost of raising a child born in 2012 will be $241,080, or $301,970 if you adjust for expected inflation. And, shockingly, this does not even include the cost of a college education, which currently is $22,826 for a public school or $44,750 for a private school – before the four- to five-percent annual tuition inflation hikes kick in.

Of course, the real cost depends on where you live. In rural parts of the country, you might get away with spending just $143,600, but in the high-cost Northeast, your costs might be $446,100, again according to the USDA.

Trouble is, some families spend even more, which raises the question: How can you cut your costs without sacrificing care for your child?

Let's tackle child care – it's one of the most expensive tabs parents face. According to the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies, in 31 states and the District of Columbia, the average annual cost for infant care is MORE than a year's tuition and fees at a four-year public college.

In 2012, according to the same source, the average annual care cost for infants ranged from $4,863 in Mississippi to a high of $16,430 in Massachusetts.

For a 4-year-old, the average costs are similar, ranging from $4,312 in Mississippi to $12,355 in New York.

The cheapest solution, getting a family member to care for your child, simply isn't practical for many moms and dads. Given that, a good solution for some parents may be employer-provided child care, which is typically run at a lower cost to employees. Plus, peace of mind is higher when your child is down the hall or in the same building as mom or dad.

If there is no on-site child care, your employer may provide you with referrals or even discounts to centers nearby.

You may also be able to pay for child care with pre-tax dollars through a flexible spending account; check your human resources office for details.

Remember, if you work in the public sector or for a company with more than 50 employees, you may be eligible for up to 12 weeks of leave to care for a sick child under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Another way to save is to share a nanny with other families and split up the costs of care. Other moms I know have set up a babysitting co-op, in which parents provide the care. You'll need to work with families in which the parents have different schedules.

One word of caution for moms and dads: Don't put your future at risk by putting every single penny into Junior's education. Your son or daughter will be able to borrow for higher education, but you'll have to foot your own tab for retirement.

Interact with Gerri on Twitter @GerriWillisFBN and Facebook for more information, or to voice your concerns and questions.

Didn't find what
you were looking for?

Powered by WorldNow

WJBK-TV | Fox 2
16550 West Nine Mile Rd.
Southfield, MI 48075

Main Station: (248) 557-2000
Newsroom: (248) 552-5103

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices