Families paid more for childcare in 2012 than in 2011, with the costs of center care rising by 2.7 percent for an infant and 2.6 percent for a four-year-old, according to a new report from Child Care Aware of America. They rose even faster for care in a family’s home, which went up 3.7 percent for an infant and 4.8 percent for a four-year-old. While the average annual cost of full-time center care ranges state by state, it is now as much as $16,430 in Massachusetts for an infant and $12,355 in New York for a four-year-old. For both children, it can be as much as $28,606.

This cost eats up a huge amount of families’ budgets. Putting two children in full-time center care represents the biggest single expense for a household in the Northeast, Midwest, and South, and it is only exceeded by the cost of housing in the West. It is more than annual median rent in every state and more than mortgage payments in 19 states and DC. The cost of putting an infant in a childcare center is more than what the average family spends on food in every region in the country. It can even be […]

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