The high cost of child care in the U.S.

By Nikki Henderson |

Published 06/20 2014 11:07AM

Updated 06/20 2014 11:14AM

New parents, get ready. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, raising a child born in 2012 until the age of 18 will set the average couple back $241,080. No, that estimate does not include the cost of college.

Many parents start saving early for college and education, but one cost that often gets overlooked is child care, according to a new study from family care website The average family spends about 18 percent of its budget on child care, says, but the cost catches many by surprise, and nearly half of families don't budget for it.

The study also highlights how the cost of child care varies across the country, with expenses being the highest for families living in the Northeast, and lowest for those living in the South.

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