Price tag for raising a baby until adulthood: $241,080

Shan Li
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - 20:45

Parents can expect to shell out $241,080 to care for a baby born last year. And those expenses are doubled if that child goes to college.

Taking care of a kid has never been more pricey, with child-rearing expenses jumping 2.6% from 2011, according to a recent study by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That's a 23% jump from 1960.

Families shelled out the most -- about 30% of the total amount devoted to one child -- on housing. Child care ranked No. 2 on the list for affluent families, while those on tighter budgets devoted a greater amount to necessities like food.

The study which has been conducted since 1960, is used by government agencies and courts to calculate child support costs and foster care payments. It factors in seven areas of spending, such as clothing and transportation.

The cost of parenting, unsurprisingly, can vary widely based on factors such as income level, geography and family size, the report found.

A family that makes less than $60,640 a year, for example, will spend $173,490 to feed, cloth and house one child, the study said, while a family that earns north of $105,000 will pay $399,780, on average.

Kevin Concannon, the agency's undersecretary of food, nutrition and consumer services, said that families with more resources naturally spend more on raising their youngster.

"The stresses and challenges get worse as families have less access to resources," he said on a conference call with reporters.

Raising children in the urban Northeast and cities in the West and Midwest will also add to the bill. The urban South and rural areas around the country were less expensive for bringing up a child.

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