What could you possibly love that costs on average $245,000 over 18 years? It must be something special.
The answer: a brand new baby.
That quarter of a million dollars needed to raise a baby born in 2013 is the national average, and does not include college expenses, which probably makes you dizzy just thinking what tuition and fees might be nearly two decades from now.
But that's not all. The cost of caring for an infant in Illinois, among other health and environmental factors, makes it the worst state in the Midwest to raise a child. You have to see where Illinois ranks overall among the 50 states including the District of Columbia, according to Wallethub.com.
And on top of Illinois' individual budget, health care and environmental rankings, we included estimated expenses, both annually and over 18 years, of raising a kid in the Midwest. Whether you live in an urban/suburban or rural area has a significant effect, as does household pre-tax annual income.
Let's just say that if you are a new parent or will be soon, you better have some sound financial plans in place. Remember, the numbers you'll see don't include college costs, but luckily, we have a list of states with the highest average public college tuition and fees. Can you guess which state made it?