Author Topic: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?  (Read 10155 times)

ivyhedge

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$446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« on: August 14, 2013, 01:15:54 PM »
From CNN, the bastion of all things financial excellence:


http://money.cnn.com/2013/08/14/pf/cost-children/index.html


*Runs for the door...*

bo_knows

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2013, 01:29:20 PM »
Quote
The biggest price tag is for families in the urban Northeast earning $105,360 or more. They will spend $446,100, much more than the national average, according to the report. Meanwhile, families earning less than $61,590 a year in rural areas will spend the least, at $143,160.

So, what you're telling me is... people typically inflate their lifestyle as they make more?   No way! :)

No Name Guy

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2013, 01:31:02 PM »
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$446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?

Only if parents are fool enough to spend that much.

446k / 18 = 24,777 / year (assuming level spending for the sake of simplicity).  Hmmmm....2k a month?  Yeah, I don't think so.....unless those NE US parents think their little spawn need expensive cheer leading competitions all the time (search the archives here for that one).

$241,080 for a typical middle income family:  That's 13,390 / year.  OK, I ate a lot and wore out my share of shoes and clothes as a kid, but nowhere near 1,000+ a month worth, even in inflation adjusted terms.  Shoot, I don't even spend that much on myself right now.

Quote
Another factor hurting families: rising transportation and food costs. Gas prices almost doubled between 2000 and 2012, even after adjusting for inflation, according to AAA. Meanwhile, food costs have spiked.
 

Sorry....I have to call bullshit on the transportation costs - the incremental cost to sling junior into the backseat is...mmmm....practically nothing, for the car driver.

Jamesqf

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2013, 02:15:45 PM »
Sorry....I have to call bullshit on the transportation costs - the incremental cost to sling junior into the backseat is...mmmm....practically nothing, for the car driver.

But, but, but...  Don't you realize that a caring parent must chauffeur the child to and from school every day, and to its numerous after-school activities?

(This may appear to be intended as sarcasm, but I live not too far from an elementary school, and on every school day there's a line of SUVs about a quarter of a mile long, waiting to pick up the little darlings.)

MrsPete

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2013, 04:15:18 PM »
Typically these articles are skewed in terms of housing.  Just to have a very round number, say your family of four lives in a three-bedroom $100,000 house.  The writers make the assumption that it is "costing you" $25,000 to house your child.  In reality, since most people tend to own three-bedroom houses, you'd probably live in that same house whether you had one child or three children.

The only thing worse than these articles is the parenting articles that try to convince women that they're losing money by going to work.  These articles tend to include not only the cost of daycare and taxes but also the cost of a new car for a lengthy commute, dry cleaning for professional clothes, lunch out every day, hair and make-up.  They ignore the fact that a stay-at-home mom needs clothes too, that dry cleaning and working lunches aren't part of everyone's life, etc. 

These articles are interesting, but you have to pay attention to how they reach their conclusions.  Their real goal is to sell magazines and promote financial services.         

MrsPete

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2013, 04:18:09 PM »
Sorry....I have to call bullshit on the transportation costs - the incremental cost to sling junior into the backseat is...mmmm....practically nothing, for the car driver.

But, but, but...  Don't you realize that a caring parent must chauffeur the child to and from school every day, and to its numerous after-school activities?

(This may appear to be intended as sarcasm, but I live not too far from an elementary school, and on every school day there's a line of SUVs about a quarter of a mile long, waiting to pick up the little darlings.)
Yes, I'm always amazed at the number of parents who "won't allow" their kids to ride a school bus, even though they're safer than personal cars.  My kids, especially my youngest, loved riding the bus because it was one of the few times each day that was purely social. 

I'd argue that a good parent will chauffer the kids to and from SOME activities, though if it's literally every day the kid is over-scheduled. 

Myrmida

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2013, 04:38:31 PM »
The only thing worse than these articles is the parenting articles that try to convince women that they're losing money by going to work.  These articles tend to include not only the cost of daycare and taxes but also the cost of a new car for a lengthy commute, dry cleaning for professional clothes, lunch out every day, hair and make-up.  They ignore the fact that a stay-at-home mom needs clothes too, that dry cleaning and working lunches aren't part of everyone's life, etc. 

^^+1 
The biggest expense of raising a child in our house is loss of income, and it is huge!  We chose to have a parent stay at home (which I know is a luxury).  Since my husband was on the cusp of a 6-figure salary when he quit to become a stay-at-home parent, we've lost quite a bit of income.  It's not technically an "expense", so we appear to have spent less on our child because we don't have daycare costs, but it has a huge effect on our personal finances.  We don't regret our choice.  In fact, it was the kick in the pants (or facepunch) we needed to get our finances in order.  However, it does show how limited these articles are - they exaggerate certain expenses and completely ignore huge financial choices that involve kids.

tomsang

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2013, 06:12:19 PM »
Having four kids with some in the teenage years, I can tell you costs are staggering.  If you don't manage them, it can be staggering.  Having one child probably would be the most costly as you have economies of scale with the others to a point, four puts into loss of scale. 

Housing-  How often do you hear that we need to move to xyz because of the schools.  This means going from a 1,200 sqft house to a 2,800 sqft house in a higher cost area (for the schools)?  The City I live in, that would be a $250,000 difference.

Health Care - As an owner, Self & Spouse cost of $1,121 per month vs. Family $1,506 = So one kid costs $385/month for medical and $59 for dental or $5,500 a year with copays, etc.

Schooling I have chosen to save and pay the tuition portion of each kid which is about $60k per kid, if you wanted to pay room and board at $40k for a $100k for public school for 4 years.  So amortized over 18 years $3,333

Throughout the years there are camps, sports, music lessons, babysitters, etc.  This is easily $1,500 per year.

Add clothes, food, vacations, and entertainment and you are at another $1,000 per year. 

There are probably about a $500 a year per kid in various other school fees.

Food can be staggering if you go out for meals, but also a lot more.  $1,500 a year?

Presents and other miscellaneous amounts add up to $667

For a total of $14,000 a year+ housing + car when they turn 16:) + $25,000 wedding:) + help with a downpayment, etc.

The biggest cost for many is the loss of income from a spouse and/or not going after full pay potential as it is hard to do with a kid.  For two professionals, this could be $500,000+ over 18 years.

$14,000 x 18 = $252,000, then you add in the larger house in a better area, bigger car, loss of income potential and you are probably closing in on a million.

Of course, if you are mustachian you can mitigate all of these expenses and maintain full income earning throughout having kids.  I think a lot of people are in shock if they add up the true costs of kids. I think many here will be shocked that they do cost more, maybe not the amounts that you hear in society, but still sizable.

 

 

marty998

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2013, 02:56:54 AM »
$880k to raise 1 child here. $1.2m for 2 apparently.

My colleagues at work nodded politely in agreement. Most thought that number was too low.

I don't get it. Kids really should't be costing more than $15k a year on average (and that is being very very generous).

If you are spending $40k a year for 20 years then either you don't realise private school isn't worth it or you are doing something very wrong indeed.

ivyhedge

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2013, 11:20:24 AM »
$880k to raise 1 child here. $1.2m for 2 apparently.

My colleagues at work nodded politely in agreement. Most thought that number was too low.

I don't get it. Kids really should't be costing more than $15k a year on average (and that is being very very generous).

If you are spending $40k a year for 20 years then either you don't realise private school isn't worth it or you are doing something very wrong indeed.
@Marty - try mentioning that to the "kidded" folks. Certainly a personal choice. We are DINK (or DIOP, since we have a dog) and have actually gotten reamed a few times: "your success is only because you don't have kids". Really? Did they think about the meaning of those words???

infogoon

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #10 on: August 15, 2013, 11:34:48 AM »
I don't get it. Kids really should't be costing more than $15k a year on average (and that is being very very generous).

If you are spending $40k a year for 20 years then either you don't realise private school isn't worth it or you are doing something very wrong indeed.

My kids are practically free. The opportunity cost of my wife being a stay-at-home mom, rather than continuing in her career, is well over $15k per year.

Undecided

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2013, 12:06:32 PM »
$880k to raise 1 child here. $1.2m for 2 apparently.

My colleagues at work nodded politely in agreement. Most thought that number was too low.

I don't get it. Kids really should't be costing more than $15k a year on average (and that is being very very generous).

If you are spending $40k a year for 20 years then either you don't realise private school isn't worth it or you are doing something very wrong indeed.
@Marty - try mentioning that to the "kidded" folks. Certainly a personal choice. We are DINK (or DIOP, since we have a dog) and have actually gotten reamed a few times: "your success is only because you don't have kids". Really? Did they think about the meaning of those words???

Mentioning what to the "kidded" folks? That "they" are spending unreasonably on raising their children? As with most other spending, that's definitely true for some, not true for all (just like spending on pets).

Rebecca Stapler

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2013, 12:16:09 PM »

Housing-  How often do you hear that we need to move to xyz because of the schools.  This means going from a 1,200 sqft house to a 2,800 sqft house in a higher cost area (for the schools)?  The City I live in, that would be a $250,000 difference.
 

+1

We are currently facing the housing conundrum. To live in a good public school system with a decent commute, it's going to cost us a big premium. Many of the towns that interest us have a very low rental stock, and have a minimum size house available. Our best hope is to buy something that's extremely outdated, and it still is hard to justify if it weren't for the schools. Before we buy, we'll try to find a rental within our needs and means, but it's not looking hopeful.

tomsang

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2013, 12:34:20 PM »
I can tell you I am not a Jacob badass or even a MMM, but I am making progress.  For those that are saying that kids don't cost much money then you obviously are living in a loft or one bedroom appartment, as there is no reason to have extra bedrooms unless you feel your children should have a room.  A childless mustachian family would not waste money on a house that has an extra room to just sit there empty throughout the year for the potential week that a friend or family comes to visit. 

Housing in itself can easily be $250,000 extra in a moderate cost of living area to raise kids in a positive enviroment with good schools, parks, recreation, etc.  You are paying a premium for this environment.  I am not saying that it can't be done, but for me it is past my comfort zone having a few teenagers living in the room that I sleep.  For those that are doing it, more power to you and I think it is great.

I laid out some legitimate expenses in my prior post, that can be reduced by being smart, but I have a hard time saying that they can be eliminated.  Again, the question is what you feel comfortable providing for your kids.  Kids are a huge asset and provide great value, but I think some are kidding themselves that they don't cost money.

Having a stay at home spouse for a professional costs about $1 million+($50k x 20 years).  Having a kid and not wanting or not able to give 100% to work for everyone else probably costs $400,000+ in lost or delayed promotions, bonuses, raises, etc. for those that continue to work. Again, I think that the value of having kids, outweighs the loss of income or the added expense and I would highly encourage those that want kids to pursue this.  Just trying to be a realist, that it does impact your stache, but life isn't about your stache, but what you get enjoyment and value out of your labor.

If you look at MMM and MRS MMM and many others, you will see a pattern of rocking your career childfree, socking away massive money, then one parent drops out when the kid comes, the next retires a few years later.  The impact on the loss of money from having a child is is minimized if you can retire in a few years with or without kids.  Those that have one early, have a larger financial impact, but can still retire decades earlier by follwoing MMM ways.
     

mpbaker22

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2013, 12:44:44 PM »

Housing-  How often do you hear that we need to move to xyz because of the schools.  This means going from a 1,200 sqft house to a 2,800 sqft house in a higher cost area (for the schools)?  The City I live in, that would be a $250,000 difference.
 

+1

We are currently facing the housing conundrum. To live in a good public school system with a decent commute, it's going to cost us a big premium. Many of the towns that interest us have a very low rental stock, and have a minimum size house available. Our best hope is to buy something that's extremely outdated, and it still is hard to justify if it weren't for the schools. Before we buy, we'll try to find a rental within our needs and means, but it's not looking hopeful.

The solution to this is to move to a district in the city of St. Louis where the schools are absolutely atrocious, but luckily unaccredited.  Because they have lost accreditation, the district is legally required to send you to another district if you request it, and many of the kids go to great schools.

A more reasonable solution is to find a cheapish private school or, if possible, home school.

Albert

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2013, 12:50:01 PM »
The cost would be enormous if we decided to have a child (still up in the air...), but as mentioned above not everything is about money.

Bigger apartment in a decent area +500$/month, childcare for the first 6 years +2000$/month, probably would need a car, reduced hours for one or both of us, extra food and clothing. About half a million sounds fair. If my girlfriend were to stop working entirely then no child care and probably no car, but lost income of 1-1.5 million dollars as we both make 100k+.

NumberJohnny5

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2013, 03:40:26 PM »
but still, you can't really justify being a stay at home parent after the kids are in full day school because that's 7-8 hours a day you're not parenting

Yes, because it is EXTREMELY easy to find a job that'll let you only work those 7-8 hours (wait, that's assuming the job is right next to the school; a 30 minute commute would reduce total time available to work by one hour), let you have off all school holidays, nice 2+ month summer break (which is being slowly taken away, I admit, so let's say < 1.5mo summer break), have no problem with you taking off when there's a teacher strike (several last year, none this year to my knowledge), are fine if you need to stay home/leave early if you have a sick child, etc.

Other than the very last point, sounds like the only job fit for a parent who wants to be home whenever the kid is, is to be a teacher. And while you'll most definitely have to work late and come in early multiple times each week, at least you probably won't have a problem dragging your kid along (lots of teacher kids roam the halls late in the afternoon).

Albert

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #17 on: August 15, 2013, 03:53:27 PM »
I'm not convinced stay at home mother actually has any meaningful benefits for kids. Both my parents worked full time during my childhood and both me and my sister turned out to be just fine. We both still have a close relationship with our parents. Anecdotal evidence of course, but I'm not aware of any data indicating otherwise.

marty998

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #18 on: August 15, 2013, 03:57:16 PM »

Mentioning what to the "kidded" folks? That "they" are spending unreasonably on raising their children? As with most other spending, that's definitely true for some, not true for all (just like spending on pets).

Oh I never say directly to them you are spending too much on your kids. That's not for me to judge. But when I add up in my head (1) food (2) a modest catholic school fee + uniforms & camps (3) extra curriculars/sport  (4) gadgets (no there is no escape from them anymore) (5) clothes and shoes (6) minor treats here and there + a few presents, even with all that for 20 years I fail to come remotely near the magic million that is so often touted.

Can only get up there if you assume you have to upgrade your house.

Maybe I don't know what is about to hit me :)

Regarding the last few posts, point taken and understood about the opportunity cost of the non-working spouse. So often it is forgotten.

yahui168

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2013, 04:05:53 PM »
We sold our 3bd/2ba 1200 sq house for $390k in a school district where the high school is ranked 4 out of 10 on greatschools.org and moved to a $1,250k 4bd/2.5ba 2500 sq house where the high school is ranked a 9.

Admittedly, we prioritize education over everything else. We're very hands on and our daughter is reading at 2nd grade level and working on multiplication and division. She starts Kindergarten this month.

bo_knows

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #20 on: August 15, 2013, 05:50:05 PM »
I'm not convinced stay at home mother actually has any meaningful benefits for kids. Both my parents worked full time during my childhood and both me and my sister turned out to be just fine. We both still have a close relationship with our parents. Anecdotal evidence of course, but I'm not aware of any data indicating otherwise.

Speaking as a father who, between my wife and I, neither of us work 100% Full-time and in total we equal 1.5x FT....  I think that it's more for the parents.  Being home enough to watch your kid grow up is worth more than money.

Rebecca Stapler

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #21 on: August 15, 2013, 06:37:57 PM »

Housing-  How often do you hear that we need to move to xyz because of the schools.  This means going from a 1,200 sqft house to a 2,800 sqft house in a higher cost area (for the schools)?  The City I live in, that would be a $250,000 difference.
 

+1

We are currently facing the housing conundrum. To live in a good public school system with a decent commute, it's going to cost us a big premium. Many of the towns that interest us have a very low rental stock, and have a minimum size house available. Our best hope is to buy something that's extremely outdated, and it still is hard to justify if it weren't for the schools. Before we buy, we'll try to find a rental within our needs and means, but it's not looking hopeful.

The solution to this is to move to a district in the city of St. Louis where the schools are absolutely atrocious, but luckily unaccredited.  Because they have lost accreditation, the district is legally required to send you to another district if you request it, and many of the kids go to great schools.

A more reasonable solution is to find a cheapish private school or, if possible, home school.

Aside from my disinterest in it, homeschooling would not be cheaper, because one of us would not be working. That would essentially cost our after-tax salary, and my undergrad alma mater costs less than that! As for the cheapish private school, well, the ones in our area are not in a denomination that jives with our beliefs.

mpbaker22

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #22 on: August 16, 2013, 11:25:49 AM »
A more reasonable solution is to find a cheapish private school or, if possible, home school.

Aside from my disinterest in it, homeschooling would not be cheaper, because one of us would not be working. That would essentially cost our after-tax salary, and my undergrad alma mater costs less than that! As for the cheapish private school, well, the ones in our area are not in a denomination that jives with our beliefs.

Hence the phrase if possible.  Home schooling is really only feasible if you already plan to have a SAHM (or SAHD for that matter).

MoneyCat

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #23 on: August 16, 2013, 11:29:00 AM »
Having one parent SAH only makes sense if the second income pays a lot more than daycare costs.  In my area (NYC metro area), a cheap daycare costs about $1000/mo.  So, if the second parent is making peanuts at work, it's kind of a waste of time and money to even have a second income.

Paul der Krake

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #24 on: August 16, 2013, 12:19:03 PM »
Side question to the fellow programmers, or holders of a cool job that typically allows some telecommuting, who have successfully bred: how realistic is it to both work from home and keep an eye on an infant child to fill in for childcare?

bo_knows

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2013, 12:27:21 PM »
Side question to the fellow programmers, or holders of a cool job that typically allows some telecommuting, who have successfully bred: how realistic is it to both work from home and keep an eye on an infant child to fill in for childcare?

I don't work from home, but I can tell you that if you need to be actually working 8hr days, with possible conference calls, it'd be nigh impossible.  My wife works from home some of the time (she's only 60% FT) and mostly it's during the kids naps or when I'm at home.  We hire a babysitter to watch our son for a 4hr chunk on wednesdays while my wife works (at home).

Undecided

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #26 on: August 16, 2013, 12:37:41 PM »
Side question to the fellow programmers, or holders of a cool job that typically allows some telecommuting, who have successfully bred: how realistic is it to both work from home and keep an eye on an infant child to fill in for childcare?

I telecommute exclusively, and my wife currently stays at home with our infant and our four-year-old (when he's not in 4 day/week preschool). Between the foreseeable demands of my job and the unforeseeable demands (e.g., last-second conference calls), I can't even be reliably counted on to step in for my wife to watch our infant during my work day. Even if he's napping and my wife leaves the house for a while, there will be times when he wakes up while I happen to be on the phone, and depending on what I'm doing and what woke him up, we could reach a meltdown before I can get to him. (So, we get through that, but I wouldn't say it's ideal.) When our older son was an infant, even with my wife then only working about 15 hours/week from home (and me working at home), we concluded that we could only both work like that if we also had a core of in-house childcare (which was basically 9-3, 4x/week).

So, at least in my (and our) situation, I'd answer your question with "not very," but that might be very different if I didn't have as many urgent and unforeseeable work demands.

Insanity

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #27 on: August 16, 2013, 12:40:31 PM »
Side question to the fellow programmers, or holders of a cool job that typically allows some telecommuting, who have successfully bred: how realistic is it to both work from home and keep an eye on an infant child to fill in for childcare?

I telecommute exclusively, and my wife currently stays at home with our infant and our four-year-old (when he's not in 4 day/week preschool). Between the foreseeable demands of my job and the unforeseeable demands (e.g., last-second conference calls), I can't even be reliably counted on to step in for my wife to watch our infant during my work day. Even if he's napping and my wife leaves the house for a while, there will be times when he wakes up while I happen to be on the phone, and depending on what I'm doing and what woke him up, we could reach a meltdown before I can get to him. (So, we get through that, but I wouldn't say it's ideal.) When our older son was an infant, even with my wife then only working about 15 hours/week from home (and me working at home), we concluded that we could only both work like that if we also had a core of in-house childcare (which was basically 9-3, 4x/week).

So, at least in my (and our) situation, I'd answer your question with "not very," but that might be very different if I didn't have as many urgent and unforeseeable work demands.

Same situation here.

Paul der Krake

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #28 on: August 16, 2013, 12:52:08 PM »
Dammit, you guys! There goes my masterplan.

NumberJohnny5

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #29 on: August 16, 2013, 04:48:09 PM »
Why do you feel you need to be home all the hours your kids are? I'm just saying that staying home all day to be a stay at home parent for kids in full time school is like not working so you can let your dog outside during the day, it just becomes an excuse to not work at that point. After Kindergarten get a full (or even part time) job where you're home in the evenings and your kid will be fine for it. My parents went to work crazy early in the morning (left the house by 6am) and were home in the evenings and weekends with us. Worked out great

You could get a doggy door to let your dog outside while you're at work. If I left a 5yr old (human) home alone, I'd get in trouble (even if I made sure he'd fit through the doggy door).

Anyways, I wasn't arguing whether one should or should not always be home when their kids are, what age it's ok to leave them home alone, etc. Rather, if you've already made the decision that you want to be home whenever your school-age kids are at home, then it's not that easy to find a part-time job that would accommodate your scheduling needs.

Heck, even with two parents who were teachers, there were times I was left home alone (I forget how old I was, I know it happened frequently in grade 4, probably started earlier). I'm pretty sure that wasn't an ideal situation.

totoro

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #30 on: August 16, 2013, 05:16:34 PM »
I don't find it really expensive to have children.  It doesn't factor into my thinking this way. 

We made money when we sold our first house which was purchased to fit the family.  Had we purchased a less expensive smaller home we would not have made nearly as much.  We now own a home that fits us all but is multi-family and paid for by rental income from the other two suites. 

I'm not sure why housing costs would automatically be so much greater - seems mostly a function of the market you are in to me.  That and market timing.

I don't consider that I've "lost" income by choosing to work pt and mostly from home.  It is good for the kids and good for me.  It is a choice I would have happily made/worked towards with or without children.  Probably made it happen faster because of them.  I never considered that if I was making more than daycare I should work outside the home - I instead thought about how I could make as much as ft work outside the home working pt from home.

Caveats are that we live in Canada and health care is covered and we have some additional insurance for dental.  The kids go to a good public school - they walk.  We do pay for any lessons they are interested in taking. One of them needs braces.  One of them likes brand-name clothes - he pays part.  One is going to South America for a sports program next year - we matched him for each dollar he earned/fund-raised for it. We also get hit up for video game type stuff fairly frequently - we point them to their own savings and CL. 

I think without children I might have been motivated to save less.  I incorporated their needs into my planning and that just gives me more motivation.

If you are interested in an example of how little it can cost you might what to check this site out - topical post on top: http://theprudenthomemakerblog.blogspot.ca/

snellbert

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #31 on: August 21, 2013, 01:24:47 AM »
Side question to the fellow programmers, or holders of a cool job that typically allows some telecommuting, who have successfully bred: how realistic is it to both work from home and keep an eye on an infant child to fill in for childcare?

Former programmer that WFH-ed twice a week-- I second the "not very". It was easier when my first was small, but as they get more mobile and want to play more, it's nigh on impossible to stare at a chunk of code for more than 5 minutes at a time (or to remember what that chunk of code was supposed to do).

I made it work by getting up way early and getting in a few hours of work before the kid woke up, taking a "break" while she was up, going back to work during her nap, and then maybe finishing an hour in the evening when the significant other got home. I will say that it made me work more purposefully and efficiently, because I didn't really have the option not to.

Angelfishtitan

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #32 on: August 21, 2013, 10:23:31 AM »
I don't understand including housing costs either. Just did a quick search for one bedroom homes around me and only a few percent of all sales fit that criteria and they were all condos as well. So you basically pay for a second bedroom whether you are having a kid or not, you are probably just calling it something else. Additional bedrooms after two shouldn't add that much onto the cost either, you are talking about an additional 10-20% of a home which is not going to be anywhere near the ~$90K they have in their chart unless you have a very above average home.

If you do buy a larger house you only lose the opportunity cost for the greater expense anyway because what prevents you from selling the larger home after your kids are gone? This would be a little more complicated to compute, but depending upon your mortgage rate and home appreciation it could possibly be zero.

Edit: In addtion on school systems: you don't need a top tier school system for your kids to get a great education, middle tier will be perfectly fine if you actually work with your kids. The school district I live in has 7+ schools on Greatschools (whatever that website is worth, we use the strategic school reports), house was $180K for 3 bedroom (aka 2 bedroom and one home office) within biking distance of schools. Even making a extremely liberal assumption that all the cost is in the house and there are six rooms total you get $30K for an extra bedroom.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2013, 10:32:49 AM by Angelfishtitan »

Joshin

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Re: $446,000 to raise a child in the northeast USA?
« Reply #33 on: August 21, 2013, 11:50:27 AM »
Side question to the fellow programmers, or holders of a cool job that typically allows some telecommuting, who have successfully bred: how realistic is it to both work from home and keep an eye on an infant child to fill in for childcare?

Both the hubs and I work full time from home, and for us it is very doable. We also homeschool, so the kids are around all the time (or, were. Now that they're older they have some outside classes and activities where we are home alone.) We've never used any type of childcare, other than the occasional visits to a relative.

When they were young, we alternated childcare, with me working in the mornings uninterrupted and him in the evenings, with both of us doing the work tasks that took less concentration during our parenting "shifts." Now that they are older (8 and 13), they are pretty self-sufficient so we both get long uninterrupted hours during the day. Two is easier than one, if they are far enough apart in age. My older son spent a lot more time at grandma's when he was very little. His younger brother didn't, since we had an older child that actually enjoyed entertaining the little one. Babies sleep a lot, so all I needed was a baby sling to ensure four or five good uninterrupted hours of work most days when they were infants.

It depends a lot on your job. For example, we rarely have clients we talk to via anything other than email, most deadlines are self-imposed, and we can do the work at any hour of the day. It also comes down to willpower and organizational skills. I'm a strong type-A personality, so it has always been easier for me to get things done even with distractions compared to hubs. I also have the willpower to adhere to self-imposed deadlines and get the work done in the time period allowed by the kids.