Babies aren鈥檛 cheap鈥 but you already knew that. What with聽the shabby chic (and perfectly pricey) modern crib that you absolutely need, the mountain of onesies and all the other essentials you filled in from your baby registry, even outfitting your nursery on a budget has already used up part of your savings on the new kid. From birth through high school graduation (and, let鈥檚 face it, beyond), your money will continue to slowly bleed (and sometimes gush) from your wallet into your child鈥檚 education, clothing, food and much, much more. The US Department of Agriculture recently unloaded their latest figures on what American families spend on their children. If you鈥檙e starting to think that your cash-to-kid flow is outside the norm, read on to discover聽what other 鈥榬ents聽are laying out.


Overall Spending

This USDA聽report features plenty of stats. Keep in mind, the facts and figures are based on what parents of a child born in 2015 are expected to spend. The estimated overall cost of raising a child for a middle-income married couple is 鈥 get ready for it 鈥 $233,610! Yep, that鈥檚 right. Oh, wait: That doesn鈥檛 even begin to cover the cost of college, because the total is limited to the amount you鈥檒l spend through your child鈥檚 17th year.


More Money, More Spending

You鈥檝e got a totally standout job, and so does your spouse. Lucky you! Well, kind of. The more money you make as a family, the more you鈥檒l spend on the聽kiddo. A married couple making under $59,200 a year will spend somewhere between $9,330 to $9,980 annually on a child. If you make between $59,200 and $107,400 a year (again, that鈥檚 combined between the two of you), your child-related expenses go up, to between $12,350 and $13,900. Families in the upper-income bracket (that make more than $107,400) can expect to spend from $19,380 to聽$23,380 a year on their kids. The difference is attributed mainly to miscellaneous expenses (entertainment, personal care and reading materials), as necessities (food and clothing) did not vary as much across income levels.


Where It鈥檚 Going

Child-related expenses cover a kind of broad range of costs. For most families in the US, housing is the greatest expense. Makes sense, right? Your rent or mortgage costs much more than baby bath products and snuggly PJs. After housing comes food (again, another necessity), followed by education. Keep in mind: In the context of the USDA聽report, 鈥渆ducation鈥 has nothing to do with college. It only includes costs related to child care and your child鈥檚 education up to age 17.

Smiling lesbian couple with baby taking selfie through smart phone in park

Place and Expense

If you live in NYC, probably unsurprisingly, you鈥檙e spending more than your BFF who lives in Detroit. Couples in the Northeast (specifically, the urban Northeast) tend to spend more than families in any other area of the US. This is followed by couples who live in urban areas of the West and South. Those fortunate families who live in the urban Midwest and rural areas tend to spend the least.


The Cost of聽Growing Up

It can feel聽like baby gear, bedding, diapers and all the other things聽that come along with a newborn make your littlest one totally expensive. And they do. But this isn鈥檛 going to be the most costly part of your child鈥檚 life. (Yes, we just heard that gulp.) According to the USDA聽report, families spend more on their children as they age. Expenses in categories such as transportation, food, clothing and healthcare all rise the older a child gets. Even though you鈥檒l spend more on your child overall as they get older, the biggest education expenses were found in children under six years. That likely has to do with the high cost of childcare before they鈥檙e old enough to start elementary school.

What is your biggest child-related expense? Tweet us聽@BritandCo!

(Photos via Getty)