Our kids, we love them but can’t deny they are expensive!

For an early Father’s Day gift, I received an electronic photo frame that cycles through a small percentage of the millions of photos of my kids.

As with everyone else I love my kids and would go to the ends of the earth for them, and like everyone else I want to give them the best opportunities I can in life so they have the best chance to do great things.

What that means is they end up costing a small fortune, depending on your circumstances and location. This varies quite dramatically as obviously, a working couple in Melbourne needs to utilise care, and the cost of care is substantially more than someone in a regional area that has access to free childcare, thank you Nan and Pop!

I did a bit of digging and found out some incredible education and care costs, I didn’t dig into food, entertainment, etc. as that is incredibly subjective.

Before school even starts a lot of people need to fund daycare, which according to CareForKids, in Ballarat, is an average of $141.34 per day (Before subsidies). That is $706.70 per week for a 5-day week.

Here is a table I found of the average cost of schooling in Victoria:

Melbourne Government $102,807
Catholic $184,366
Independent $307,508
VIC Regional & Remote Government $75,217
Catholic $165,262
Independent $208,057

Source: Futurity Investment Group Cost of Education Index 2023

Let’s not forget that quite a few people start early and/or finish late, so need to fork out for before/after school care. Using the fees I could find on CareForKids I got a median of $28.18 per hour (the cheapest was $17.85 and the most expensive was $38.5). It is worth noting that most of the care facilities didn’t have a cost listed. If you assume 2 hours a day that is $281.80 per week (Before Subsidies).

Of course, I then wanted to put a case scenario together. A Ballarat couple has a child and for the first 12 months, one of them stays home with the child and then returns to work full time, meaning they need to utilise daycare 5 days a week for 48 weeks a year after the first 12 months. They want to go to a Private (Independent) school and will need to utilise 2 hours of after-school care per day (5 days a week for 13 years). They will take time off work during school holidays so no need for care then.

Child care (1 -5) = $33,921.60
Private School = $208,057
After school care = $146,536
Total = $388,514.60

That means their darling child has cost them approximately $21,584 per year for care and education alone!

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