Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Kids are expensive to raise

...and the numbers underestimate the cost

They're really expensive! That's bad!
According to its latest estimate, a child born in 2007 costs $204,060 to watch over, feed, cart around, educate and house from birth to the age of 18. This amounts to a tenfold increase in less than 50 years. According to the USDA, child-rearing costs have soared since the department began its annual study in 1960, when raising a kid cost a mere $25,229.
But it's not as bad as it seems. That's good!
While that may sound like a dramatic increase — and could in part explain why more families today are raising only one child — it's actually not much greater than the U.S. inflation rate over the same time period.
But it's really even worse!
But consider what the government figures don't take into account, and the onerous repercussions for families nationwide.
...
Take child care.
...
And why not start talking about college, even if said child is merely an infant?
...
For example, though housing makes up the largest single cost across income groups — 33% to 37% of total expenses — the estimates do not include mortgage principal payments.
...
Nor does the report take into account the myriad other products and services that parents today consider essential to raising a child. When you count the stroller, car seat, baby formula, crib, pacifiers and diaper cream, the bill for the first year's baby gear alone clocks in at $6,300. That's not including such luxuries-cum-necessities as exersaucers, baby sign-language class, Mommy and Me yoga and bouncy seats for the youngest set — and then soccer, tutoring, piano lessons, iPods and designer jeans once the kids hit school age.
But it may not be all that bad. That's good!
Sure, some of this stuff is extraneous.
The author neglected to mention that the report was cursed, but came with a free frogurt, which was also cursed, but came with a free topping that contained potassium benzoate.

That's bad.

You can go now.


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3 comments:

Feh23 said...

"That's not including such luxuries-cum-necessities as exersaucers, baby sign-language class, Mommy and Me yoga and bouncy seats for the youngest set — and then soccer, tutoring, piano lessons, iPods and designer jeans once the kids hit school age."

Just because upper middle and upper class parents think these things are necessities, doesn't make it so. They AREN'T and it's bogus that EVERYONE has to subsidize such b.s. because of parental tax breaks.

Anonymous said...

The author says the cost increase over the last 50 years is about equal to inflation, which is probably true. What she doesn't mention is that wages for all but the richest workers have been either plateauing or decreasing in value over the last 40 years. People today are working harder and longer for money that has much less buying power than it did 50 years ago. And some costs have been rising much, much faster than inflation, specifically tuition and housing.

Heather said...

I love your blog. And now I see that you love The Simpsons too. Nice reference, LOL!