New survey shows what parents are sacrificing to afford child care

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(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Rising costs from inflation are affecting families all over the country, especially when it comes to taking care of children.

A new survey from The Penny Hoarder spoke to 2,000 American parents consistently paying for child care, and the data shows families are basing important life decisions on whether or not they can afford it.

Locally, a story reported on Oct. 25 highlighted the cost to put children in local daycares is rising with inflation, and some parents said that small difference is just too much.

“When you do the math, based on what my wife and I make, we pay almost 28 percent of our total monthly income to child care you know, and that’s to me it’s outrageous,” said Eric Pham in an October interview.

Pham is a parent whose child care center rates rose from $1,550 to $1,700 per month.

According to The Penny Hoarder, in 2018, families were only paying a median percentage of 15 percent of their income on child care, but now people surveyed say that is 25 percent or more, just like Pham’s.

The survey concluded:

  • 84 percent of parents who responded said the monthly child tax credit expansion has helped them with the cost of child care this year 
  • 70 percent feel stressed about what their family’s child care costs may look like in 2022
  • 66 percent would consider switching jobs to a company that offered child care financial assistance
  • 63 percent said the cost of child care has been a factor in deciding whether or not to have another child
  • 40 percent have gone into debt due to the cost of child care 
  • 38 percent have had to take on a second job or “side hustle” afford child care
  • 36 percent said the cost of child care has affected their ability to pay off debt 
  • 35 percent have had to choose between paying for child care vs. paying a utility bill on time
  • 28 percent have had to choose between paying for child care vs. paying my mortgage or rent on time
  • 28 percent said they have had to borrow money from friends or family to pay for child care
  • 26 percent said they have had to move due to the costs of child care 

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