Cost of child care in every state — and where Colorado ranks

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DENVER — Deciding to have a child is arguably the biggest decision a person makes in her life. With parenthood comes a profound responsibility that ranges from protecting to educating. While countless joys accompany parenting, there are costs too — and they take effect even before birth.

Child care is an incredibly common expense for American families. According to a 2015 report published by ChildCare Aware of America, an advocacy group supporting access to high-quality child care, 11 million children younger than the age of 5 are in child care for an average of 36 hours per week in the United States.

Though the arrangement can vary from in-home care to the aid of grandparents and neighbors, 35 percent of children receive center-based care at child care centers, preschools and Head Start programs.

The team at Credio wanted to see how child care costs vary for families in every U.S. state. To do this, they analyzed data from ChildCare Aware of America’s “Parents and the High Cost of Child Care” report — which details the cost of full-time child care in centers — along with 2014 Median household income from the U.S. Census Bureau, which includes income generated by all members of a household.

Depending on the state, the percentage of Median household income spent on child care for two children annually ranged greatly, from below 20 percent to north of 45 percent.

We ranked the 50 U.S. states by this metric, and included the Percent of Median household income for one child, the average cost of care for two children, as well as the cost of one, as well as Median household income for each state.

50. South Dakota

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 19.73 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $10,465
Percent of Median household income for one child: 10.67 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $5,661
Median household income: $53,053

49. Wyoming

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 22.22 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $12,374
Percent of Median household income for one child: 11.75 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $6,541
Median household income: $55,690

48. Tennessee

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 23.73 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $10,372
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.40 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $5,857
Median household income: $43,716

47. Utah

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 24.06 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $15,253
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.63 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,641
Median household income: $63,383

46. Arkansas

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 24.46 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $10,990
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.35 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $5,995
Median household income: $44,922

45. Hawaii

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 24.70 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $17,592
Percent of Median household income for one child: 11.63 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,280
Median household income: $71,223

44. South Carolina

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 24.76 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $11,126
Percent of Median household income for one child: 14.41 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $6,475
Median household income: $44,929

43. Mississippi

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 24.83 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $8,819
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.58 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $4,822
Median household income: $35,521

42. Alabama

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 24.85 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $10,508
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.33 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $5,637
Median household income: $42,278

41. Louisiana

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 25.14 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $10,661
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.55 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $5,747
Median household income: $42,406

40. Oklahoma

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 25.24 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $11,911
Percent of Median household income for one child: 14.38 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $6,788
Median household income: $47,199

39. North Dakota

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 25.90 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $15,728
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.53 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,217
Median household income: $60,730

38. Nebraska

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 25.97 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $14,769
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.94 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $7,926
Median household income: $56,870

37. Idaho

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 26.43 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $14,124
Percent of Median household income for one child: 13.47 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $7,200
Median household income: $53,438

36. Alaska

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 27.52 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $18,609
Percent of Median household income for one child: 16.20 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $10,957
Median household income: $67,629

35. Kentucky

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 27.56 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $11,793
Percent of Median household income for one child: 14.71 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $6,294
Median household income: $42,786

34. Virginia

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 27.84 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $18,415
Percent of Median household income for one child: 15.81 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $10,458
Median household income: $66,155

33. Georgia

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 28.54 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $14,144
Percent of Median household income for one child: 15.43 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $7,644
Median household income: $49,555

32. Texas

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 28.75 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $15,489
Percent of Median household income for one child: 16.26 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,759
Median household income: $53,875

31. New Hampshire

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 28.98 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $21,267
Percent of Median household income for one child: 16.09 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,810
Median household income: $73,397

30. Maryland

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 30.24 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $23,032
Percent of Median household income for one child: 18.29 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $13,932
Median household income: $76,165

29. Iowa

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 30.62 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $17,701
Percent of Median household income for one child: 16.41 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,485
Median household income: $57,810

28. Maine

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 31.68 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,381
Percent of Median household income for one child: 18.39 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,512
Median household income: $51,710

27. Missouri

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 31.68 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $17,940
Percent of Median household income for one child: 15.24 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,632
Median household income: $56,630

26. Michigan

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 32.01 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,645
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.00 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,882
Median household income: $52,005

25. New Mexico

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 32.22 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $15,040
Percent of Median household income for one child: 17.01 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $7,942
Median household income: $46,686

24. New Jersey

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 32.31 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $21,080
Percent of Median household income for one child: 17.68 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,534
Median household income: $65,243

23. Indiana

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 32.62 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $15,678
Percent of Median household income for one child: 18.56 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,918
Median household income: $48,060

22. Ohio

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 32.87 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,318
Percent of Median household income for one child: 18.08 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,977
Median household income: $49,644

21. California

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 33.14 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $20,048
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.54 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,817
Median household income: $60,487

20. Montana

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 33.24 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,984
Percent of Median household income for one child: 17.73 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,062
Median household income: $51,102

19. Delaware

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 33.50 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $19,268
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.12 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,000
Median household income: $57,522

18. Pennsylvania

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 33.91 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $18,711
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.28 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $10,640
Median household income: $55,173

17. Oregon

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 34.16 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $20,109
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.23 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,322
Median household income: $58,875

16. Arizona

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 34.38 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,934
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.16 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,437
Median household income: $49,254

15. West Virginia

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 34.74 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $13,739
Percent of Median household income for one child: 20.04 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $7,926
Median household income: $39,552

14. Vermont

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 34.99 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $21,240
Percent of Median household income for one child: 18.56 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,270
Median household income: $60,708

13. Florida

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 35.46 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,362
Percent of Median household income for one child: 18.84 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $8,694
Median household income: $46,140

12. Kansas

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 35.84 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $19,152
Percent of Median household income for one child: 20.96 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,201
Median household income: $53,444

11. North Carolina

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 36.01 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $16,847
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.78 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,255
Median household income: $46,784

10. Nevada

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 36.03 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $17,970
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.75 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $9,852
Median household income: $49,875

9. Connecticut

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 36.18 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $25,382
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.78 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $13,880
Median household income: $70,161

8. Wisconsin

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 36.24 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $21,048
Percent of Median household income for one child: 19.94 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $11,579
Median household income: $58,080

7. Washington

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 37.79 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $22,321
Percent of Median household income for one child: 21.56 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $12,733
Median household income: $59,068

6. Colorado

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 37.80 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $23,036
Percent of Median household income for one child: 21.59 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $13,154
Median household income: $60,940

5. Minnesota

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 37.90 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $25,485
Percent of Median household income for one child: 21.36 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $14,366
Median household income: $67,244

4. Rhode Island

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 39.07 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $22,907
Percent of Median household income for one child: 21.94 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $12,867
Median household income: $58,633

3. Illinois

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 41.03 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $22,531
Percent of Median household income for one child: 23.61 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $12,964
Median household income: $54,916

2. Massachusetts

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 47.26 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $29,843
Percent of Median household income for one child: 27.02 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $17,062
Median household income: $63,151

1. New York

 

Percent of Median household income for two children: 47.59 percent
Cost of child care for one infant and one 4-year-old: $25,844
Percent of Median household income for one child: 26.04 percent
Cost of child care for one infant: $14,144
Median household income: $54,310

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