In the case of some animals, a newborn is able to walk within just 10 minutes of being born. This is especially true for horses, whose newborns are often seen to run on the first day of life. However, a human child is in a totally different league than such animals, who are almost savants when compared to the human child. Not only is a human child unable to move for the initial months of his or her life, the child cannot reach any sort of maturity for at least 15-20 years of his life. During this time, the parents are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the child, which they of course love to do.
The total cost of raising a child includes all the expenses that go into the care and upkeep and growth of the child. In the following sections, we look into the major costs associated with raising a child, starting from the costliest one first, which is education.
A child needs an education not just to be successful, but also to be a functional citizen in our complicated modern world. Since everyone needs good education, there is a lot of demand for it, resulting in higher cost of education for everyone. From ages 5 to 18, and beyond, your child will need your help to pay for his or her education, and the total expenses over the years could easily end up in hundreds of thousands of pounds, in school fees and related expenses.
When joining college, you could help your child by chipping in, or could ask them to get a loan or pay for it themselves. Even if you are not expected or do not plan to pay for your child’s college education, even then the total expenses will likely be in hundreds of thousands of pounds. Education costs are likely to be the single largest block of expense when it comes to raising a child.
Costs of Upkeep and Other Expenses
As a parent, you are fully responsible for each piece of clothing worn by your child, each toy he or she plays with and then breaks, each type of corn flakes that he likes, and for every other product that he needs or likes to use. Even though, as a parent, you may love to buy these things for your child, the costs of buying these products adds up over time, and definitely reduces funds available for other expenses. In a recent survey in the UK, 75% of parents reported that they had to cut back on other expenses when raising a child. Therefore, odds are that you too will have to cut back on your other expenses to fully take care of your kid.
Costs of Tuitions and Hobbies
Education and upkeep are the kind of expenses that can be called necessary expenses. But there are other expenses that you may have to make to help your child grow into a successful and confident adult. Tuitions of all kinds, whether in music, skating, dance or programming, can help your child learn new skills and make new friendships. There are also expenses associated with hobbies that your child may pursue.
Overall, we find that for an average family, the cost of raising a child today can easily touch a million pounds over the 18 years of the child’s life. This is a rough estimate, and the expenses will vary from one family to another; but, as we have seen above, there are a number of costs associated with raising a child, and there is no shortcut that you can use to avoid them. However, you can definitely make sure that your child always feels loved even when you do not have too much money to splurge on the best kinds of products. In the end, your relationship with your child, and your guidance, will be the best investment you can make in your child.