Any parent will tell you that raising children is expensive. These costs are spread out over nearly two decades, but the hit to your pocketbook is still very noticeable. In a recent report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, researchers attempted to estimate the actual costs of raising a child who was born within in the Past year.
The numbers are staggering. Additionally, they speak to the importance of securing court-ordered child support in order to help cover those costs. After reading about the actual costs of child rearing over a 17 or 18-year period, divorced Denver residents may have a new appreciation for Colorado's child support system.
The estimates of child rearing costs varied based on income. The idea is that families with more money will likely be able to spend more on their kids than parents with scarcer resources.
Here were the cost estimates for parents in different income brackets:
- Lowest income group: $212,370 over the next 17 years
- Middle income group: $300,000 over the next 17 years
- Highest income group: $490,830 over the next 17 years
It should be noted that these cost estimates do not include the price of paying for college.
Even in the lowest income group, child rearing expenses are very high. Imagine how much more difficult it would be for a single parent to cover these costs without the help of child support.
Times are tough, and the challenge of making ends meet is often difficult both for those who pay child support and those who receive it. The system is not perfect in Colorado or anywhere else, but when we look at just how much it costs to take care of a child, it is easy to appreciate that both parents must be held financially accountable in some way.
Source: Wall Street Journal, "Cost to Raise a Child: Around $300,000, Not Including College," Phil Izzo, June 14, 2012