Raising a family is expensive. Even for those who plan financially before becoming parents, their financial situation can change quickly when they have children. For many parents, child care makes up a significant portion of their monthly budget, and the costs continue to rise every year.
If you’re looking for an affordable childcare solution in your area or planning to start a family soon, you may be wondering what to expect in terms of average childcare costs. It may be more than you realize. Find out how much American families spend on daycare.
On average, Americans spend $321 per week on daycare
Child care costs continue to rise in the United States, according to the Care.com 2024 Cost of Care Report. Many families rely on their income and savings to cover this important expense. Finding affordable solutions can be a struggle, and waitlists are often long.
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According to the study, 47% of families will spend more than $1,500 in monthly child care costs by 2023. But costs vary depending on the type of child care, and 49% plan to spend on the same amount in 2024. How much did families spend on average to send their children to daycare last year?
The national average weekly spending for daycare costs in 2023 is $321, an increase of 13% from $284 in 2022. That’s almost $1,300 a month spent on daycare. The average cost of day care varies by geography, with some families paying more or less.
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In Washington, DC, parents spend an average of $419 per week on childcare costs. Meanwhile, the average weekly cost of child care in Arkansas is $129. But unfortunately, not every family has the ability to act to save money.
Some parents are forced to make significant lifestyle changes due to the high cost of childcare. Here are some interesting statistics related to these changes made by parents:
- 28% work multiple jobs
- 27% reduced their work hours
- 17% are out of the workforce
Not surprisingly, 59% of parents surveyed said childcare access and affordability were among the top three issues affecting their future voting choices. presidential election.
Four tips to save on childcare costs
If you’re struggling to keep up with rising child care costs or you’re struggling to find quality care for your children, you’re not alone. Here are some tips to help you save on childcare costs.
1. Allocate pre-tax dollars to a Dependent Care FSA
Using a Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (DCFSA) can offer savings. You won’t get a discount on childcare costs, but you will save money on your tax bill. You can contribute up to $5,000 to a DCFSA in 2024.
2. Compare alternative child care solutions
It is recommended to check the cost of different child care solutions in your community. In some cases, day care may be more expensive. For example, a babysitter who cares within their home may be a cheaper option.
3. Share a sitter
Another way to reduce the cost of childcare is to share a babysitter with another family. Some nannies take care of multiple children. Sharing the costs with another family may allow you to get quality childcare while keeping more money in your bank account.
4. Consider changing the work schedule or work
It may be worthwhile to see if your employer will allow you to work a hybrid schedule instead of being entirely in the office to reduce day care costs. Another option is to explore remote or freelance work opportunities.
Are you looking for more ways to save money? Check out our free personal finance resources.
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