Prep My Journey

Child Care Cost – Which state costs the most?

Posted on: April 13, 2012

If you have kids and they go to daycare, you know how expensive it can be.  It’s like another mortgage payment.  According to, here are the Top 10 Least Affordable States for Center Based Infant Care in 2010 (Ranked by Child Care Cost as percentage of two parent family income).  

State (Average annual cost of care)

  1. Massachusetts ($16,500)
  2. New York ($13,650)
  3. Hawaii ($12,600)
  4. Colorado ($12,400)
  5. Minnesota ($12,900)
  6. District of Columbia ($18,200)
  7. Oregon ($10,750)
  8. Illinois ($11,800)
  9. Montana ($9,100)
  10. Pennsylvania ($11,300)

Although District of Columbia’s average annual cost of care is higher than the other states, it’s based on the percentage of State Median Income for two parent families.  

It’s not surprising than in 2010, in 36 states,

The average annual cost for an infant in center based care was higher than a year’s tuition and fees at a four-year public college.

Even care for four-year olds were higher than the tuition for public colleges in 26 states. It makes sense as to why some parents decide to stay home to take care of their children rather than go to work.  It’s an ongoing debate.


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