Here’s Where You Should Live if You Want to Have a Baby and Not Go Broke

Now would be a good time to head down south...
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By Stephanie Grassullo, Contributing Writer
Published May 14, 2019
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Image: Stella Kalinina / Getty Images

No matter where you live, raising a baby isn’t cheap. The good news—certain places will be a little lighter on your wallet than others. Real estate brokerage Redfin just shared new data outlining the most (and least!) affordable places to raise a baby in the US. Spoiler alert: Birmingham, Alabama is the most affordable ($16,383 for baby’s first year), and Washington, DC is the most expensive ($35,017 for baby’s first year)

10 Most Affordable Places to Raise a Baby:

  1. Birmingham, AL
  2. Little Rock, AR
  3. Charleston, SC
  4. Louisville, KY
  5. New Orleans, LA
  6. Tulsa, OK
  7. Oklahoma City, OK
  8. Austin, TX
  9. Nashville, TN
  10. Atlanta, GA

10 Most Expensive Places to Raise a Baby:

  1. Washington, DC
  2. Boston, MA
  3. Worcester, MA
  4. San Jose, CA
  5. Orange County, CA
  6. San Francisco, CA
  7. Oakland, CA
  8. San Diego, CA 9 Los Angeles, CA
  9. Oxnard, CA

Southern locales dominated the ranking of the most affordable places for a baby’s first year, with Little Rock, Arkansas coming in second at $16,585 and Charleston, South Carolina coming in third at $16,566. “Most Expensive” is yet another not-so-ideal title Washington, DC has been hit with lately. In addition to this survey’s results, it was recently named the worst place to raise a family by Policygenius. And other than Boston and Worceseter—both in Massachusetts—the rest of the top 10 most expensive places were made up by cities in California.

Here’s how Redfin narrowed it down. The company calculated how much it costs to move up from a two-bedroom single-family home to a comparable three-bedroom single-family home, or from a one-bedroom to a comparable two-bedroom condo in the 79 US metro areas that meet its criteria. To be included, the area had to have had at least 1,500 homes. From there, it broke out the data by metro area and took a close eye on many features of the homes, including location, size of the home, number of bathrooms, transit time to its local business district, housing density and other factors. They then added the difference in annual mortgage payments to average yearly childcare costs for the state in which the metro is located, plus uniform healthcare and baby item expenses, to come up with the total cost.

Don’t freak out if the places you live or are planning to move to are at the bottom half of the list. The best thing you can do is master the art of budgeting. Learning how to secure your family’s financial future is key. Here are some tips on how to raise kids and still manage to save for the future.

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