Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

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swordandscales
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by swordandscales »

Thegame14 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:23 am
swordandscales wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 5:40 pm Same boat as you. Daycare is our second highest expense barely behind the mortgage. We live in a modest home and send our kiddos to a “normal” daycare, e.g. they don’t eat organic, locally sourced smoked salmon for their breakfast snack.

It’s incredibly expensive.
I wish, mortgage is $1,400, daycare is $2,700 a year.
Holy cow, I am sorry my friend.
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GCD
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by GCD »

Wow. My sympathies to all the child care expense payers. My MIL moved into a spare bedroom in our house and spent 5 days/4 nights there every week. Saved us a lot and gave us peace of mind re: the provider. Although having the MIL in our house full time during the week was its own kind of stress, it was definitely worth it. I highly recommend building up those family relationships and stuffing any irritation with the grandparents if you can. I realize every family situation is different. We were fortunate.
stoptothink
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by stoptothink »

GCD wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:01 pm Wow. My sympathies to all the child care expense payers. My MIL moved into a spare bedroom in our house and spent 5 days/4 nights there every week. Saved us a lot and gave us peace of mind re: the provider. Although having the MIL in our house full time during the week was its own kind of stress, it was definitely worth it. I highly recommend building up those family relationships and stuffing any irritation with the grandparents if you can. I realize every family situation is different. We were fortunate.
Ha, we pulled my son out of daycare to have my MIL provide it...but we pay her more than we were daycare, and this included when my in-laws were living with us (free). She is great with my son though.
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Vulcan
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Vulcan »

cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:51 am To answer the OP. I would put 15-18 at the top. The senior year of high school has been brutal.
What is special about senior year?

The only thing I can think of that is different for us is about a grand in college application fees and some scheduled flights to admitted student campus preview visits.

Next year it remains to be seen, but more likely than not we will be paying an equivalent of our house's value over the next four years. And then it's our younger's college time right after that...
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Thegame14 »

goodenyou wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 7:11 pm College-age by far if you include cost of education and living expenses. Throw in a the cost of a car and car insurance and it just increases the expenses. Cash burn from 18-24 has been tremendous for 2 in college. One more to go.
the car and college are the kids expenses, not yours....
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by jharkin »

This thread makes me soooooo glad that my wonderful spouse chose a career whose hours line up with school.

We will never make anywhere near the quarter million+ salaries many of you do, but the expense numbers thrown out have me thinking we are actually better off...
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by stoptothink »

Thegame14 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:23 pm
goodenyou wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 7:11 pm College-age by far if you include cost of education and living expenses. Throw in a the cost of a car and car insurance and it just increases the expenses. Cash burn from 18-24 has been tremendous for 2 in college. One more to go.
the car and college are the kids expenses, not yours....
Again, the biggest difference is the early childhood expenses are unavoidable (for the most part), while the 15+ expenses are a choice.
Thegame14
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Thegame14 »

stoptothink wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:46 pm
Thegame14 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:23 pm
goodenyou wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 7:11 pm College-age by far if you include cost of education and living expenses. Throw in a the cost of a car and car insurance and it just increases the expenses. Cash burn from 18-24 has been tremendous for 2 in college. One more to go.
the car and college are the kids expenses, not yours....
Again, the biggest difference is the early childhood expenses are unavoidable (for the most part), while the 15+ expenses are a choice.
I agree that was my point, college costs and cars and choices or elective, child care is not a choice, we both work, no option for one of us not to work and it si $2,700 a month, vs mortgage on half million house of $1,400
remomnyc
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by remomnyc »

Definitely ages 1-5, especially with two in daycare. Not sure what it costs now, but it was about $2k/kid/mo when my kids were going. Once public school started, we finally had some breathing space. The biggest expense after daycare was summer camp. No driving, so we don't have that expense. Activities, braces, everything else is nothing compared to daycare. College looks like it'll be $80k/yr. Ouch.
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Peter Foley
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Peter Foley »

For our children it was definitely the college years. (years 2000 - 2006).

We have been helping our children with their day care expenses. Our day care expenses in the early 1980's took a much smaller bite out of our two income family than our grandchildren's childcare has taken from our children (2014-2020).

While not part of the OP's question, I think the rise in child care costs are disproportionate to the rise in income for many dual income families over the past 30 years.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by cshell2 »

Vulcan wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:16 pm
cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:51 am To answer the OP. I would put 15-18 at the top. The senior year of high school has been brutal.
What is special about senior year?

The only thing I can think of that is different for us is about a grand in college application fees and some scheduled flights to admitted student campus preview visits.

Next year it remains to be seen, but more likely than not we will be paying an equivalent of our house's value over the next four years. And then it's our younger's college time right after that...
Senior trips (2), college application fees, testing and school visits (four so far and two admitted student days in February that will have lots of driving and hotel room charges), senior portraits, new suit for Nationals, coming up will be senior Prom and graduation party. Maybe not a lot to you, but these senior costs were 10% of my income in 2019...oh...and he's in private school, so tuition on top of that.

The OP asked what was the most expensive time period for me with my kids and this is it for him. I was a SAHM when he was little and didn't pay childcare and even if I did childcare is cheap here. I was only paying $100/week for infant care for my now 9 year old, so it was never more than 6K/year. He still has summer and after school care and it runs me about 2K...about the same as what I pay for his piano lessons.
Last edited by cshell2 on Wed Feb 05, 2020 9:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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goodenyou
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by goodenyou »

Thegame14 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:23 pm
goodenyou wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 7:11 pm College-age by far if you include cost of education and living expenses. Throw in a the cost of a car and car insurance and it just increases the expenses. Cash burn from 18-24 has been tremendous for 2 in college. One more to go.
the car and college are the kids expenses, not yours....
Not in our house. They are our expenses because we choose to have them as expenses. Many expenses are a choice.
"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge" | Do you know how to make a rain dance work? Dance until it rains.
dabretty
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by dabretty »

I chuckled seeing this, and reading some of the comments.

We - both fully-employed - have a 5 and 7 year old, kindergarten and second grade. Currently in "free" school!

While daycare and pre-school were rough (about $11k/kid/yr) and we're currently enjoying only paying the minimal fees for after school care, we do live in a city/state known to have some of the worst public schools in the country. Elementary is fine (very localized to the neighborhood), but our plan is to go private for both kids starting in their junior high years (so grades 6-12). The nearest/best we have here is currently $25k/yr (ouch!). As such, I have to vote for grades 6-12 as the most expensive!

We've hit 529 contributions pretty hard since they were born, so college seems like this distant occurrence that may have a decent chunk of it already saved/paid for. And our state is one of the few to not yet conform to federal laws allowing 529 dollars to be spent on secondary education, so we couldn't be tempted to give ourselves some earlier relief if we wanted to. I guess that's good in a way (being forced to remain invested).
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by jharkin »

stoptothink wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:19 am
cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:10 am
Yes, I could have said you're not going to be in jazz or marching band or speech or Boy Scouts unless you pay for it all yourself and saved a ton of money. He probably would have been perfectly happy to just sit in his room and play video games all day at no cost to me. But, it was important to me that he not do that.
It isn't binary, just because you won't pay for all kinds of expensive extracurricular activities doesn't mean the only alternative is sitting in their room playing video games. At least that is my experience.
+1

We have not got to HS yet, but our rule with the kids is they can each pick one sport and one other activity to participate in at any given time of the year. We made a very conscious decision that we will NOT be one of those families who spends their nights and weekends effectively a taxi service going from event to event. We have no interest in being yet another jock dad/soccer mom pair screaming at their kids from the sidelines and fighting with the other parents.

We use all the time freed up to do fun family activities, take hikes/trips together, just relax or get some needed mom and dad me time.


Let the kids live a little and stop to take in the scenery once in a while.
Its quite liberating to step off the treadmill and just let the Jones'es do what they are gonna do without you.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by cshell2 »

jharkin wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:02 am
stoptothink wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:19 am
cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:10 am
Yes, I could have said you're not going to be in jazz or marching band or speech or Boy Scouts unless you pay for it all yourself and saved a ton of money. He probably would have been perfectly happy to just sit in his room and play video games all day at no cost to me. But, it was important to me that he not do that.
It isn't binary, just because you won't pay for all kinds of expensive extracurricular activities doesn't mean the only alternative is sitting in their room playing video games. At least that is my experience.
+1

We have not got to HS yet, but our rule with the kids is they can each pick one sport and one other activity to participate in at any given time of the year. We made a very conscious decision that we will NOT be one of those families who spends their nights and weekends effectively a taxi service going from event to event. We have no interest in being yet another jock dad/soccer mom pair screaming at their kids from the sidelines and fighting with the other parents.

We use all the time freed up to do fun family activities, take hikes/trips together, just relax or get some needed mom and dad me time.


Let the kids live a little and stop to take in the scenery once in a while.
Its quite liberating to step off the treadmill and just let the Jones'es do what they are gonna do without you.

Unless you only have one kid, one sport and one other activity can still be a lot of running around.
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MillennialFinance19
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by MillennialFinance19 »

soccerrules wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 9:11 am
cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:47 am
MillennialFinance19 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:45 am We’re in a LCOL area and spend 9k per kid annually on day care. I can’t imagine my expenses increasing enough to erase a $1500 per month surplus of funds.
LOL

Just you wait. :twisted:
#College
He said excluding college. I have no question that college will be more expensive, however, I do plan to have semi-adequate 529 funds for that.
For the love of God, stick to your plan!!!
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MillennialFinance19
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by MillennialFinance19 »

cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:47 am
MillennialFinance19 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:45 am We’re in a LCOL area and spend 9k per kid annually on day care. I can’t imagine my expenses increasing enough to erase a $1500 per month surplus of funds.
LOL

Just you wait. :twisted:
I guess I'll have to report back here with my results :shock:
For the love of God, stick to your plan!!!
ncbill
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by ncbill »

jharkin wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:02 am
stoptothink wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:19 am
cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:10 am
Yes, I could have said you're not going to be in jazz or marching band or speech or Boy Scouts unless you pay for it all yourself and saved a ton of money. He probably would have been perfectly happy to just sit in his room and play video games all day at no cost to me. But, it was important to me that he not do that.
It isn't binary, just because you won't pay for all kinds of expensive extracurricular activities doesn't mean the only alternative is sitting in their room playing video games. At least that is my experience.
+1

We have not got to HS yet, but our rule with the kids is they can each pick one sport and one other activity to participate in at any given time of the year. We made a very conscious decision that we will NOT be one of those families who spends their nights and weekends effectively a taxi service going from event to event. We have no interest in being yet another jock dad/soccer mom pair screaming at their kids from the sidelines and fighting with the other parents.

We use all the time freed up to do fun family activities, take hikes/trips together, just relax or get some needed mom and dad me time.


Let the kids live a little and stop to take in the scenery once in a while.
Its quite liberating to step off the treadmill and just let the Jones'es do what they are gonna do without you.
We required our kids to participate in a school sport once they reached high school...they picked cross-country & track...school provided uniforms and the minibus that took them to after-school practice and meets...so we were just buying shoes. :)

One just graduated and still regularly participates in running events near where they live.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by soccerrules »

jharkin wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:02 am
stoptothink wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:19 am
cshell2 wrote: Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:10 am
Yes, I could have said you're not going to be in jazz or marching band or speech or Boy Scouts unless you pay for it all yourself and saved a ton of money. He probably would have been perfectly happy to just sit in his room and play video games all day at no cost to me. But, it was important to me that he not do that.
It isn't binary, just because you won't pay for all kinds of expensive extracurricular activities doesn't mean the only alternative is sitting in their room playing video games. At least that is my experience.
+1

We have not got to HS yet, but our rule with the kids is they can each pick one sport and one other activity to participate in at any given time of the year. We made a very conscious decision that we will NOT be one of those families who spends their nights and weekends effectively a taxi service going from event to event. We have no interest in being yet another jock dad/soccer mom pair screaming at their kids from the sidelines and fighting with the other parents.

We use all the time freed up to do fun family activities, take hikes/trips together, just relax or get some needed mom and dad me time.


Let the kids live a little and stop to take in the scenery once in a while.
Its quite liberating to step off the treadmill and just let the Jones'es do what they are gonna do without you.
age of the kids matter -- and the 1 sport and 1 activity can add up quickly when the 1 sport and 1 activity have 2-3 events each week. Add in birthday parties, religious meetings/activities, attending school events and take me to Suzy's house.
Bottom line it can be BUSY and Expensive.
Don't let your outflow exceed your income or your upkeep will be your downfall.
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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by TomatoTomahto »

Don’t let your kids grow up to be hockey goalies $$$$$ :oops:
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.
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goodenyou
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by goodenyou »

TomatoTomahto wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:58 am Don’t let your kids grow up to be hockey goalies $$$$$ :oops:
Or one hockey goalie and one forward 2 years apart both in travel hockey for 10 years.
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CoAndy
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by CoAndy »

KlangFool wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 5:39 pm OP,

Not the answer that you are looking for.

I save 1 year of my expenses every year. Then, I spend the rest. So, my expense did not change since I cannot spend what I do not have. The only exception is when the kids go to college. Then, I use my annual savings to pay for a college education.

I save first and spend later.

KlangFool
KlangFool

Always love your posts. Question for you. Do you save a year of your current expenses every year or a year of your planned expenses in retirement every year?
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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by TomatoTomahto »

goodenyou wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:06 am
TomatoTomahto wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:58 am Don’t let your kids grow up to be hockey goalies $$$$$ :oops:
Or one hockey goalie and one forward 2 years apart both in travel hockey for 10 years.
Yeah, that was exactly our demographic. It was a mostly positive, albeit expensive and time-consuming, activity. Tbh, I’m glad it’s over.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by KlangFool »

CoAndy wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:32 am
KlangFool wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 5:39 pm OP,

Not the answer that you are looking for.

I save 1 year of my expenses every year. Then, I spend the rest. So, my expense did not change since I cannot spend what I do not have. The only exception is when the kids go to college. Then, I use my annual savings to pay for a college education.

I save first and spend later.

KlangFool
KlangFool

Always love your posts. Question for you. Do you save a year of your current expenses every year or a year of your planned expenses in retirement every year?
Current expense. When my kids go to college, I save nothing. All my annual savings go towards paying for a college education.

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goodenyou
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by goodenyou »

TomatoTomahto wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:36 am
goodenyou wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:06 am
TomatoTomahto wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:58 am Don’t let your kids grow up to be hockey goalies $$$$$ :oops:
Or one hockey goalie and one forward 2 years apart both in travel hockey for 10 years.
Yeah, that was exactly our demographic. It was a mostly positive, albeit expensive and time-consuming, activity. Tbh, I’m glad it’s over.
:sharebeer No regrets, but very expensive and extremely hectic. Cost of Men’s hockey league and equipment is on them now.
"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge" | Do you know how to make a rain dance work? Dance until it rains.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by quantAndHold »

goodenyou wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:18 am
TomatoTomahto wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:36 am
goodenyou wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:06 am
TomatoTomahto wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:58 am Don’t let your kids grow up to be hockey goalies $$$$$ :oops:
Or one hockey goalie and one forward 2 years apart both in travel hockey for 10 years.
Yeah, that was exactly our demographic. It was a mostly positive, albeit expensive and time-consuming, activity. Tbh, I’m glad it’s over.
:sharebeer No regrets, but very expensive and extremely hectic. Cost of Men’s hockey league and equipment is on them now.
So glad our kids chose recreational soccer.

The musical instruments and music lessons, though, made life interesting. At least with music, they spent most of their time in their bedroom playing scales until they got to high school. By then, they could get themselves to rehearsals.
Yes, I’m really that pedantic.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by mickeyvee »

The most expensive time is AFTER they move out of the house.
  • They come back and have additional baggage and liabilities that you might have to assist with (including children),
    Sometimes, it doesn't matter HOW you raised them, S#%$ happens...
    Lucky us, we currently have a 65 LB husky for a few months! LOL :beer
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by whunter3333 »

I added this:

Post-College early career: I remember thinking that "costs" would be less without paying for college expenses, however, now I choose to spend my money flying to where they live and paying for them and the significant others to travel with us. For me, this is a great choice.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Pikel »

Our kid is still young. We will pay for in-state tuition. If our kids think it makes sense to spend 4-5x for the same piece of paper they are on their own.

It is possible we will retire before they are in NYS colleges and we will be under the (current) 125k income threshold for free tuition. Kind of hard to predict or count on all that stuff, though.

A lot of the replies seem like humblebragging to me. Kids do not have to be expensive, and they can still enter early adulthood without enormous debt burden.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by helloeveryone »

nanciT wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 6:18 pm College, no question about it. I recall when they were little thinking the cost of daycare, then the school supply lists etc.
College hit, but both did get scholarships, 1 went to Private, 1 State. It was well worth the money and guidance. I want to add as an Educator myself, I see too many go off to college without any idea of what type of career it will lead to. We spent alot of time with both our kids guiding them with that thought.
It worked, they both have excellent jobs they are very happy with what they are doing.
Was the guidance all through growing up and through college? Or career guidance through college only? Thanks for sharing!
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Sophia1884 »

nanciT wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 6:18 pm College, no question about it. I recall when they were little thinking the cost of daycare, then the school supply lists etc.
College hit, but both did get scholarships, 1 went to Private, 1 State. It was well worth the money and guidance. I want to add as an Educator myself, I see too many go off to college without any idea of what type of career it will lead to. We spent alot of time with both our kids guiding them with that thought.
It worked, they both have excellent jobs they are very happy with what they are doing.
NanciT, can you expand on this please? What was the plan for the guidance? Resources? Ages/States for conversations? Types of conversations/ideas? I feel like life goals/career planning (outside of the conversations with the HS guidance counselor) is something that I missed in my own experience and would very much like to start early with my girls. Thanks!
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by cshell2 »

Pikel wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:34 pm Our kid is still young. We will pay for in-state tuition. If our kids think it makes sense to spend 4-5x for the same piece of paper they are on their own.

It is possible we will retire before they are in NYS colleges and we will be under the (current) 125k income threshold for free tuition. Kind of hard to predict or count on all that stuff, though.

A lot of the replies seem like humblebragging to me. Kids do not have to be expensive, and they can still enter early adulthood without enormous debt burden.
I don't know. Most of the posts denying high school kids are expensive are from those that don't have any yet. :D
SC Anteater
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by SC Anteater »

I'm gonna echo everyone else and say teen years and college (obviously).

Fortunately we live in a place where we didn't need to buy the kids cars. They could get to school and to their teen jobs by walking/bike riding. (They still don' t have cars, and they're sophomores in college). They didn't get their driver's licenses until they were 18 so that saved a lot of money on insurance, etc. by waiting those two years.

We never had much money throughout their childhood years so didn't get to save much for college so we're mostly cashflowing it (had about $18K in 529s). They do have the subsidized federal students loans.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by stoptothink »

cshell2 wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 6:29 pm
Pikel wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:34 pm Our kid is still young. We will pay for in-state tuition. If our kids think it makes sense to spend 4-5x for the same piece of paper they are on their own.

It is possible we will retire before they are in NYS colleges and we will be under the (current) 125k income threshold for free tuition. Kind of hard to predict or count on all that stuff, though.

A lot of the replies seem like humblebragging to me. Kids do not have to be expensive, and they can still enter early adulthood without enormous debt burden.
I don't know. Most of the posts denying high school kids are expensive are from those that don't have any yet. :D
And visa versa, those saying teenage years probably never experienced the $1000+/month for childcare.
SC Anteater
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by SC Anteater »

Pikel wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:34 pm Our kid is still young. We will pay for in-state tuition. If our kids think it makes sense to spend 4-5x for the same piece of paper they are on their own.

It is possible we will retire before they are in NYS colleges and we will be under the (current) 125k income threshold for free tuition. Kind of hard to predict or count on all that stuff, though.

A lot of the replies seem like humblebragging to me. Kids do not have to be expensive, and they can still enter early adulthood without enormous debt burden.
Sure, if you don't want your kid to participate in any extracurriculars as a teen they're cheap. Sports, band, school functions, etc. all add up, and we did the bare minimum of these (summer swim team, school sports -- no travel teams, no extra music lessons, etc.)

eta -- and if you have a teenage son, the food costs will be absolutely insane. The kid would eat 3/4 of a flank steak without even noticing. We ate mostly rice, beans, and chicken (literally, red meat maybe once a month) and grew a bunch of our own produce and the grocery budget was over $10K a year.
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Third Son
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Third Son »

corp_sharecropper wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 5:35 pm Wife and I make so much more than we used to but life feels like it has more than kept us in check via expenses. I'm NOT talking lifestyle creep either, I think we lived far more "luxuriously" around 7-8 years ago than we do now. I chalk it up to kids mostly. I'm really hoping things will get less expensive once they get a little older but before college. But I don't know, so I'm curious what the most expensive time has been for you couples with kids.

Right now we're 38/36 with a 6yo in kindergarten (public school at least) and a 3yo in daycare. I honestly can't say I noticed any financial relief when the 6yo left daycare for kindergarten (plus we still need to pay for something in the summer).

I'm going to assume college aged kids are the most expensive by far so I'm leaving them out for this.

Tell me it gets better!

Example choices:

(1) pre-kids
(2) infant/toddler years
(3) 5-10 years old kids
(4) 11-14 years old
(5) 15-18 years old
We have four daughters all grown and out of the house. Paid for Parochial school and all of them are college educated. Three are now married. We did that all on one income for 25 years.
The hardest part was when we had four teenagers in the house at the same time. We have no family living in the same state.
I still don't know how we did it.
"A part of all you earn is yours to keep" | | -The Richest Man in Babylon
nanciT
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by nanciT »

Sophia1884
Response to your questions

It was our own guidance. Starting young with taking responsibility. Jobs in HS, we support and help but have them earn. Understand they need to study something they love and can make a living. We live in a high earning area, so many of their friends were given everything especially in HS. We worked at making it clear they both had to get a good education and learn to earn themselves. We did pay for college( aside from scholarships earned), it was extremely expensive and they both had small jobs while in college. This is a critical time, made sure each was also finding internships in their fields prior to graduation. This was key. Not much help from HS or college counselors.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by jsprag »

In absolute terms:

1. College (most expensive)
2. High school
3. Diaper and daycare years
4. After daycare, before high school (least expensive)


Generally more expensive with age. But our income growth easily outpaced the rising costs of having a family. Net disposable income in the high school and college years was/is easily higher than any period before.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by pahkcah »

In the age ranges listed, infant/toddler daycare was by far the largest expense for DW and me.

As you assumed, expenses for college aged kids are the largest. DW and I had children in college for twelve straight years (three children who are 4 years apart in age). One went to an out-of-state, state university (Howdy!), and the other two went to out-of-state private institutions (a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan spider for each). We set up 529 plans for each child that covered some of the costs. Decided the best way to cover the remaining costs was for me to retire and use my pension, which we started receiving immediately. I took a weekend off and started at a new job at the same salary as the job I retired from. The result was that we were able to cover all college costs with essentially no financial impact.

With no student loans to worry about, our children have been able to save and cover expenses for their own homes, etc. So in a way, paying for college is now saving expenses for DW and me.

Enjoy the journey!

pahkcah
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MrBobcat
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by MrBobcat »

We had/spent no extra money beyond basic living expenses till the kids got out of college.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by mnsportsgeek »

Man am I glad I don’t live in an expensive area. Our 3 month old starts daycare on Monday at a center and we’ll be paying $1150/month. Pretty happy with that after seeing some of the numbers here.

Having said that, I can’t imagine another period of my <18 year old kids life that will cost more than 15ish grand a year.
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MrBobcat
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by MrBobcat »

stoptothink wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 6:40 pm
cshell2 wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 6:29 pm
Pikel wrote: Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:34 pm Our kid is still young. We will pay for in-state tuition. If our kids think it makes sense to spend 4-5x for the same piece of paper they are on their own.

It is possible we will retire before they are in NYS colleges and we will be under the (current) 125k income threshold for free tuition. Kind of hard to predict or count on all that stuff, though.

A lot of the replies seem like humblebragging to me. Kids do not have to be expensive, and they can still enter early adulthood without enormous debt burden.
I don't know. Most of the posts denying high school kids are expensive are from those that don't have any yet. :D
And visa versa, those saying teenage years probably never experienced the $1000+/month for childcare.
No but some of us experienced the forgone income of having a stay at home parent.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by Nutmeg »

For my family, high school was more expensive than college.

High school expenses included private high school, costs of car (needed to get to high school), travel sports and coaching, visiting colleges in eight states, senior school trips, and church trips (including one to another country). It was all worth it, and I loved the years my children were teenagers.
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corp_sharecropper
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by corp_sharecropper »

OP here....

The most confusing thing to me so far is....


Median (or mean) household income + numbers being discussed = ....Doesn't compute, breaks calculator, blue screen of death, NaN, etc... I simply can't wrap my head around it.
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leeks
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by leeks »

corp_sharecropper wrote: Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:39 am OP here....

The most confusing thing to me so far is....


Median (or mean) household income + numbers being discussed = ....Doesn't compute, breaks calculator, blue screen of death, NaN, etc... I simply can't wrap my head around it.
I'm not exactly sure what you are getting at here.

But I think it is safe to say the median Boglehead income is not reflective of the national median household income, although there is a wide range among Bogleheads and certainly not all are high income.
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Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Post by StealthRabbit »

leeks wrote: Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:17 am ...
I'm not exactly sure what you are getting at here.

But I think it is safe to say the median Boglehead income is not reflective of the national median household income, although there is a wide range among Bogleheads and certainly not all are high income.
  • Never made > $60k annually (night shift factory worker. lots of overtime)
    Single income family (SAHM)
    Homeschooled kids
    Traveled a lot (did international assignments and volunteer work)
    Took lots of sabbaticals to be home with kids
    Had care / expense of disabled parent (for 30+ yrs)

    Retired from wage income before age 50. (save wisely, spend even more wisely)
Kids were very inexpensive, and paid their own 'freight' (including college)
They survived. (and excelled at the opportunity, and were 'the better' for it. ) Been 15+ yrs since college, they haven't 'rebelled' or fled back home yet. So far, so good.

Expensive? Friends with adult kids in $50k rehab program every few years, while caring for the 'grandkids' / paying for private school for them. (Also tiring for retiree / old people.) I have 7 friends / neighbors caring for their grandkids while parents (adult kids) are in jail, or on the run, or have run away from responsibilities.
the car and college are the kid's expenses, not yours....
^^^^ good plan & thought process...
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