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Kids Cost How Much?

child running
Mescon, Flickr

They’re out with those numbers again, about how much it costs to raise a child from age 0 to 17.

Parents will swallow hard. The US Dept. of Agriculture says it takes $234,900 to raise a kid, including food, shelter, and necessities. Depending upon your definition and your child’s definition of necessities, it could be $2 million, right? A kid has to have his Wii.

Texas is actually one of the cheapest places in the US to raise a child.

The most expensive place in the country to raise a child is the Northeast, so if you’re looking to save money don’t move to New York City.

The West Coast is next in terms of costly schools and pricey clothes. The Midwest is middle-of-the road, and the south is the cheapest.

During the recession my OB actually said to me, he was seeing fewer pregnant patients because finances were keeping people from having children at the pre-recession pace. The thought of spending big bucks on diapers, formula, shoes, Wii games, preschools, and all of the things at that come later can be a deterrent from bringing that sweet face into the world at all, sad as that is.

The rest of us bring the sweet, expensive faces into the world anyway, and we just refuse to do the math. That’s good parenting right? Total denial!

I went to a superstore yesterday and bought diapers, formula, baby food, other food the older toddlers will eat, and a birthday present for a 4-year old’s party today. When I looked at the receipt, I noticed about ten percent of the total was for my spouse and me…the rest was kid-related. The adults in the family got yogurt, chicken, and some shampoo.

Enjoy your quality time with those little money-suckers! We do.

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