Created by: EarlyChildhoodEducation.com
I feel like instead of this being from earlychildhoodeducation.com, it should be from cdc.gov.
I LOL’d- thanks, that made my day:)
I’m in the middle of reading the Atlantic’s article on women not being able to have it all. Not exactly directly related, but supportive of the facts stated above: there’s give, and there’s take, but it’s a oneway street for a looonngggg time.
So very, very true.
I am always a little sceptical about those figures of costs for raising a child they take into the cost of upgrading your house lots of people already live in 3 bedroom homes and the car as well lots already have what is best deemed a family car. take the cost of upgrading these out and the costs go down. I am sure there are other ways to cut the costs too.
True, but I wonder if there are other things they’re NOT taking into a account – do they count maternity clothes, all the baby-rearing books you buy, or more intangible things like the opportunity cost of not getting promoted because you’re always leaving early to pick your kids up from school? I guess we have to assume they’re probably missing things on both sides, but overall, I bet it’s fairly close.
I can’t comment on this cost estimator in particular, but some of the estimates I’ve seen in the past (and they tend to center more or less around the same amounts of money) have specifically said they do not count things like opportunity costs, college tuition, music lessons, etc. These are bare-bones estimates. They don’t include extras. That’s why sometimes the calculators will break down the estimates depending on the household income of the parents: the higher the income, the more each child will cost because richer parents can afford more extras.
I do wish the estimates would take more of these things into account so it would give people a more real-life idea of exactly how much cash they will be parting with. Opportunity costs will probably dwarf things like food and upgrading to a bigger car, so not including them gives a really skewed answer (skewed way LOW). It’s always the intangibles (the things that you don’t pick up at the store piecemeal with price tags attached) that end up draining the bank account over time. If raising a kid was only about buying onesies and school supplies, it wouldn’t be so damn expensive.
Re: people who already have family-sized cars or houses big enough to raise kids in, true, they’re still paying the cost of those things regardless of whether they have kids or not, but the point is, if you don’t have kids, you can choose to pay less for a smaller house or smaller car. The overall point still stands, that if you have kids, you’re going to have to shell out the money for these things. Childless/childfree people may choose to buy a 3-bedroom house instead of a one-bedroom apartment, but parents don’t have a choice, unless they want Junior sleeping in their bedroom until college.
Yes, I am replying to myself like a huge loser, but I wanted to add about housing costs that regardless of the size of your house, living in a good school district is hella expensive, and people without kids (especially those who will never have kids) can choose to live elsewhere. My 2-bedroom townhouse, moved about three zip codes over, would be unaffordable for us. We could afford to buy it because we don’t have to worry about the test scores of the school down the street. I wonder if the cost estimates take *that* into account, and not just the price tag of buying a bigger house.
These are all REALLY good points. I wish I were smart enough to come up with a more accurate and comprehensive calculator that could take all of these things into account. If I ever find one, I promise to add it to the site!
Here is a link to a page which talks about costs in New Zealand of raising children. Its worth a look to compare
Sorry that link won’t work this will though
Just note that things have increased in proce since that article was written but you get a rough idea of it
It’s so interesting to me how different countries view the economies of having children. I read that there’s a huge upswing in Russian women not having children for financial reasons.
Things have definitely increased in price with that article being about 10 years old now
I think the Listener recently suggested $180k for one child in a low income family as a bare bones starting rate… Thats a LOT of money! And if we had kids, we would want to give them lots of opportunities, hence the debate at the moment is “if we do, do we just have one so we can afford to give them the opportunities?”
blah blah blah (covering my eyes)…I don’t want to hear this! Who knew triangles with faces could be so depressing?
I know, everyone knows the rectangle is the most depressing shape! Fail.
Interesting graphic. I’m always interested why they put housing on the list of costs, though. You’d have to pay for that anyway. (Unless they mean that parents are paying for kids after 18 or when they’ve moved out.) I don’t know why, but that always perplexes me.
And it’s interesting that people put a price on kids. I mean, I know they cost, but some could care less what they spend or what it would cost them to raise them. They just want them. Very interesting all the way around. Cost did not factor in to my decision not to have them, I can tell you that. My reasons were more emotional/mental.
I think the housing piece is on there because most people wind up spending more on a house if they have kids because it needs to have a certain number of bedrooms and be in a nice school district. If Drew and I decide not to have kids, we’d be fine in a 2 or 3 bedroom house, but if we had 2 kids, we’d definitely need to go to 4 bedrooms and a big yard. So, that’s how I always interpret that. But I think you’re right, there’s definitely some people who couldn’t care less what they cost because they truly want them. I think it’s only relevant for those of us on the fence.
Are you aware that you have an ad on your site that explains how someone can earn $36,000 being a surrogate mother (kind of ironic). Based on your little flowchart that means if you have 6 kids the 7th is free like a Jimmy Johns punch card. Also, by the seventh you should have a pretty good idea if you want to keep one. That’s right, problem solved no need to keep debating this point. Don’t thank me – its what I do.
I think the government already has that punch card program, right?
This is very interesting. I do think that part of my concern about having kids or not has to do with finances, in that I’m finally in a place in my life where I’m not broke and having kids would (I feel) put me back in that broke place. Not that it wouldn’t be worth it if I truly loved motherhood, but it’s definitely a factor for me. At the moment, I don’t mind channeling my money elsewhere!
I think the whole thing about housing depends upon where you live as well. I live in NYC, and here you often have to compromise on housing even when you do have kids. I know a parent who has a really great two bedroom in a great complex/neighborhood, and just had another kid. I asked him if he planned to move out anytime soon, and he was adamant that they would never give up their place. They were fine with their kids sharing a room at least through their teens (I suppose it helps that both kids are boys). Many folks do this in the city, because adding another bedroom can literally mean leaving the city, and these parents don’t want to do that. I will say that they have a great rent on their apt. (which is why they’ll never leave), which has allowed them to buy a summer house where they can go and have all the space they need on the weekends. So while I’m sure that they are still paying a lot for parenthood, they have found a way to do it that makes sense to them, at least in terms of housing.
It definitely helps that they’re both boys – I can’t really imagine having to share a bedroom with one of my brothers through high school – one of us definitely would have murdered the other. So I feel bad for the parents that can’t bunk the kids up like that for long.
I don’t think the price tag of raising a kid is what bothers me the most about this graphic. It’s the statistics about losing friends, having less sex, being more dissatisfied with your marriage, and being more depressed that really upsets me. Those things are far too important to me. No wonder once the kids fly the coupe some couples are left staring at a stranger across the breakfast table.
It’s true – all those things trump money any day of the week. And I feel like with the increased pressure to be the perfect parent, those things are only going to get worse.
I agree entirely as well, but unfortunately, if you dont have kids, you still lose friends when THEY have kids – or they at least become friends you dont see nearly so often. We are starting to struggle with that now, and it sucks.
So true, and unfortunately, pretty inevitable. It’s sad, but there’s only so much you can do to keep up with friends who are now spread much thinner and have different priorities (as they should).
Confirms everything I thought I knew about having children, therefore it must be accurate….
One small bone to pick, however: it should say ‘fewer friends’ and not ‘less friends.’
The grammar police! Hiding in plain clothes.
This made me laugh so hard, reality can be so darn funny*sigh*
I know, the IQ part really made me chuckle. In a sad way.
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