According to the US Department of Agriculture, parents of a child born in 2013 should expect to spend $245,000—or more than $300,000 after adjusting for inflation. The report is generating a lot of press, but Katrina Trinko of the Daily Signal helps show why that figure’s way off base:
That’s because it’s the average number, not the minimum number. It’s an average from a span that includes those who are struggling to stay afloat, and those who are buying $1,250 strollers for their children.
Trinko also provides a USDA chart showing that depending on children’s ages, in 2013 typical families spent significantly less than would support a $250,000 typical childrearing costs claim. Parents earning less the $62,000 spent around $10,000; while those earning between $62,000 and $106,000 spend slightly more but still less than $15,000. On average parents earning more than $106,000 spend between $20,000 and $25,000 on their child in 2013.
Trinko rightly concludes, “It’s not cheap to raise a kid. But nor does it have to be insanely expensive.”