The cost of child care has surged during recent years. In fact, in many states it’s now more expensive than rent. If you ever find yourself in a financial hole trying to balance parenting and work, you may be able to use a payday loan advance for some relief.
According to Child Care Aware of America, the average cost of infant care increased 2 percent during the course of 2022, FinExperts reports. As a result, child care is the largest expense for many households.
On a state-by-state basis, the most expensive area for infant child care was Massachusetts at $15,000 per year, the report said. In contrast, the most affordable was Mississippi, at an annual expense of $4,600.
Meanwhile, the average cost of providing child care for a four-year old increased 4 percent during the same period. Massachusetts was still the most expensive state for this type of care at $11,700 per year. Conversely, it cost households in Mississippi just $3,900.
“Child care costs have become a bigger burden for parents since the economy turned,” Child Care Aware interim director Ollie Smith told the news source. “When you talk about the cost being $15,000 a year, people just cannot afford to pay that now.”
During the course of 2022, an estimated 11 million children under the age of five were in child care. This has forced many families to cut back spending in other areas, such as food and gasoline, so their children have a place to go while they are at work.
This has caused many parents to opt for unlicensed child care centers to save. However, since these businesses aren’t held to stringent health and safety standards, this decision could potentially put a child’s well-being at risk.
Use Tax Credits To Save On Child Care
Although you want what’s best for your children, the cost of child care could prevent this natural instinct. However, according to Smart Money, there may be a few ways to adjust your budget to free up some extra funds to put toward child care.
Even if you aren’t feeling the financial burden of child care, you may be able to reach out to the government for assistance. The Child and Dependent Care Credit allows parents to claim money on their taxes. This varies depending on how many children you have.
While this could yield a hefty tax return, make sure to put these funds to good use, rather than wasting the money on frivolous expenses.
Ask About Employer Discounts
To help cope with the rising cost of child care, certain employers now team up with child care centers to give their employees relief. While this may not be available at every company, contact your human resources department to see if they have any perks to help. Even if they only subsidize the expense, every little bit helps.
Share The Financial Burden With Friends
An increasingly popular option to save on child care costs is to team up with another family. By doing this, you could hire a babysitter or nanny to watch two children rather than one at half the cost.
Finding an individual that can meet the needs and fit the schedules of two different families may take some finagling, but your patience could pay off.