How to Plan for the Significant Costs of Parenthood

Are you ready for parenthood?  What was your first response to that question?  It was probably, “No I am not ready for parenthood.” At the very least, you probably hesitated at the question and you weren’t quite sure how to answer it.  The truth is, most parents, especially if it is their first child, are not at all ready to be parents.

One of the biggest concerns for new parents is the financial costs of being a parent.  I want to go over a few of those here, to really put this into perspective and to help give new or upcoming parents an idea of the costs of parenthood, and what types of sums of money will have to go towards what aspects of childrearing.  Becoming a parent is kind of like inheriting a family business.  All of a sudden you have this new responsibility put on you and more often than not, there are some uncertainties that you might have about it.

Costs of Parenting

Here are the main costs of parents and childrearing to consider:

  • Family leave.  This is one of the least considered costs out there.  People almost never think of this one, because it is all about the money you won’t be making because of having a kid, not about the money you will have to be spending.  Be sure to look into how your employer addresses the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to give you a better idea of what your medical leave options are.
  • Child care.  Probably one of the biggest costs that go into childrearing is child care.  If you put your infant or toddler into daycare, it will cost about ten-thousand dollars a year.  That’s more than what a lot of colleges cost per year!
  • Before and After School Care.  Once your child is in public school, you still aren’t quite out of the woods.  For youngsters, school time is not nearly as long as your work day, so you will have to pay extra for an extra program within your child’s school, or for a before or after-school babysitter.
  • College.  If you want to send your child to college, it will cost on average anywhere from $35,000 to $70,000, depending on the school you send them to, and how long they go for.
  • Millennials living at home.  Also called boomerang kids, more kids are coming back to live with their parents now than ever before in the history of this country.  This can also create extra costs of simply having more people living in the home.  Also, when a child in their twenties or thirties comes back to live at home, their parents are sometimes retired, so the income flow might not be big enough to support retired parents and their adult kids.

Considering the Future

It’s important to consider all of the different factors and aspects of child care and child rearing when you are getting ready to engage in this.  Childcare is a tough thing to deal with sometimes, but it most definitely does not have to be.

When looking at the future, just make sure that you consider all of the costs that are involved, and make sure that you put together a plan for how to pay for a child, preferably before you become a parent if you can.

At the end of the day, having children is a beautiful activity and something that can bring incredible joy and happiness to all involved.  Having a child is pleasant and fun, and incredibly rewarding.  Plan it out as best you can, and may luck be with you!