WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — Ranging from the monthly grocery bill to day care, the cost of raising a child born in 2012 will cost a middle-income family $241,080 by the time they are 18 years old.
According to a U.S. Department of Agriculture report released on Aug. 14, food, shelter and other child-rearing necessities will set a middle-class family back nearly a quarter-million dollars – or $301,970 when adjusted for future inflation.
The annual report, based upon the Federal government’s Consumer Expenditure Survey, showed a 2.6 percent increase from the same study representing a child born in 2011.
“As the economy continues to recover, families are naturally cost conscious. This report gives families with children a greater awareness of the expenses they are likely to face,” said USDA Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services Under Secretary Kevin Concannon. “The report is also a valuable resource for courts and state governments in determining child support guidelines and foster care payments.”
According to the report, the largest price tag is for families raising a child in the urban Northeast who are earning $105,360 or more. They will spend $446,100, much more than the national average, according to the report. Meanwhile, families earning less than $61,590 a year in rural areas will spend the least, at $143,160.
For just the year 2012, the report found that middle-income, two-parent families spent on average between $12, 600 to $14,700 per child.
For middle-income families, housing costs are the single largest expenditure on a child, averaging $71,820 or 30 percent of the total cost over 17 years. Child care and education (for those incurring these expenses) and food were the next two largest expenses, accounting for 18 and 16 percent of the total cost over 17 years.
Since 2000, the cost of child care has increased twice as fast as the median income of families with children, according to the most recent report from Child Care Aware of America.
Follow WNEW on Twitter.