By Christiane Cordero

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The cost of child care is the third largest expense among married, middle-income families, after housing of food, according to the US Department of Agriculture. The USDA estimates that number is increasing at about $100 per year.

In Minnesota, costs vary drastically depending on location, as reported on by non-profit Child Care Aware. Metro-area preschools cost, on average, $13,000 a year, while infant care costs $17,000 on average.

It’s a bit cheaper outside of the Twin Cities, where preschool costs about $9,400 and infant care comes in at $11,000.

Care.com broke down costs by the type of caregiver and found nannies cost the most, at $565 per week, followed by after-school sitters at $232 a week, day cares at $211 a week and family care centers at $195 per week.

One cost-saving option for families: A flexible spending account. It allows families to set up to $5,000 aside per year for child care expenses, pre-tax.

Care.com estimates only 55% of families actually use an FSA, which means several things, including that it might not be right for everyone. Families need to decide during enrollment how much money they’ll set aside, as they can’t change it once the year begins, and in many cases, the account is on a use-it-or-lose-it basis.

Christiane Cordero

Comments
  1. James Dunn says:

    First world problems if you’re spending $565/week on a nanny.

    The reality is that most of the child care (a vast majority) of the child care in MN is subsidized by government child care assistance which hyper-inflates the cost of child care. At the end of the day, child care has been a miserable disaster, owned & operated by MN DHS which funneled hundreds of millions of dollars to terrorists using MN tax payers money.

    Imagine if MN would have had more resources to assign to actual child care… perhaps the costs would have been just a bit more in-reach for the average Minnesotan. Those resources were complicit in helping terrorists instead. And guess what? Nobody was held accountable. Again. Why not? Because it’s MN DHS.

    #DisbandDHS #DHSAccountableToNoOne #DHSDoesNotProtectChildren #DHSFailAgainandAgain