Child Care Costs By State 2020

Child care in the United States can be a shocking financial burden. The high cost of child care and the low teacher wages and concerns of care quality are often confusing to parents. Infant and toddler care are significantly more expensive than care for children of preschool age.

The average cost of providing center-based care for an infant in the U.S. is $1,230 per month. The federal definition of affordable child care costs 7% or less of annual household income. The cost of center-based infant or toddler child care does not meet this definition in any state. Child care subsidies only cover the average cost of care for an infant in Hawaii, Indiana, and South Dakota. In half of all states, the gap between the subsidy rate and the cost of care exceeds $400 per month.

Many families who make the median income in their states cannot afford to send their infant or toddler to child care. In some states, child care costs can take up to 18% of their family’s income.

In 28 U.S. states, the annual cost of child care exceeds the cost of college tuition. In Florida, for example, center-based infant care costs about $9,238 per year and public college tuition and fees cost about $4,455 per year. In Washington, D.C., infant care is $24,243 annual, more than four times the annual cost of college tuition.

One large reason that child care is so expensive is that it is a very involved, labor-driven industry.

Child Care Costs by State

Below are the average annual costs for infant child care in each state.

  • Alabama - $6,001 ($500 per month)
  • Alaska - $12,120 ($1,010 per month)
  • Arizona - $10,948 ($912 per month)
  • Arkansas - $6,890 ($574 per month)
  • California - $16,945 ($1,412 per month)
  • Colorado - $15,325 ($1,277 per month)
  • Connecticut - $15,591 ($1,292 per month)
  • Delaware - $11,021 ($918 per month)
  • District of Columbia - $24,243 ($2,020 per month)
  • Florida - $9,238 ($770 per month)
  • Georgia - $8,520 ($711 per month)
  • Hawaii - $13,731 ($1,144 per month)
  • Idaho - $7,474 ($623 per month)
  • Illinois - $13,802 ($1,150 per month)
  • Indiana - $12,612 ($1,051 per month)
  • Iowa - $10,379 ($865 per month)
  • Kansas - $11,222 ($935 per month)
  • Kentucky - $6,411 ($534 per month)
  • Louisiana - $7,724 ($644 per month)
  • Maine - $9,449 ($787 per month)
  • Maryland - $15,335 ($1,278 per month)
  • Massachusetts - $20,913 ($1,743 per month)
  • Michigan - $10,861 ($905 per month)
  • Minnesota - $16,087 ($1,341 per month)
  • Mississippi - $5,436 ($453 per month)
  • Missouri - $10,041 ($837 per month)
  • Montana - $9,518 ($793 per month)
  • Nebraska - $12,571 ($1,048 per month)
  • Nevada - $11,408 ($951 per month)
  • New Hampshire - $12,791 ($1,066 per month)
  • New Jersey - $12,988 ($1,082 per month)
  • New Mexico - $8,617 ($718 per month)
  • New York - $15,394 ($1,283 per month)
  • North Carolina - $9,480 ($790 per month)
  • North Dakota - $9,091 ($758 per month)
  • Ohio - $9,697 ($808 per month)
  • Oklahoma - $8576 ($715 per month)
  • Oregon - $13,616 ($1,135 per month)
  • Pennsylvania - $11,842 ($987 per month)
  • Rhode Island - $13,696 ($1,141 per month)
  • South Carolina – $7,007 ($584 per month)
  • South Dakota - $6,511 ($543 per month)
  • Tennessee - $8,732 ($728 per month)
  • Texas - $9,324 ($777 per month)
  • Utah - $9,945 ($829 per month)
  • Vermont - $12,813 ($1,068 per month)
  • Virginia - $14,063 ($1,172 per month)
  • Washington - $14,554 ($1,213 per month)
  • West Virginia - $8,736 ($728 per month)
  • Wisconsin - $12,567 ($1,047 per month)
  • Wyoming - $10,647 ($887 per month)

Washington D.C. has the most expensive child care of any state at $24,243 per year or $2,020 per month. The cost of infant child care every month in the District is about as much as rent for a one-bedroom apartment. Massachusetts has the second-most expensive childcare in the U.S., costing $20,913 annually.

Child Care Costs By State 2020

Source:
State 2020 Pop.
Alabama4,908,620
Alaska734,002
Arizona7,378,490
Arkansas3,039,000
California39,937,500
Colorado5,845,530
Connecticut3,563,080
Delaware982,895
District of Columbia720,687
Florida21,993,000
Georgia10,736,100
Hawaii1,412,690
Idaho1,826,160
Illinois12,659,700
Indiana6,745,350
Iowa3,179,850
Kansas2,910,360
Kentucky4,499,690
Louisiana4,645,180
Maine1,345,790
Maryland6,083,120
Massachusetts6,976,600
Michigan10,045,000
Minnesota5,700,670
Mississippi2,989,260
Missouri6,169,270
Montana1,086,760
Nebraska1,952,570
Nevada3,139,660
New Hampshire1,371,250
New Jersey8,936,570
New Mexico2,096,640
New York19,440,500
North Carolina10,611,900
North Dakota761,723
Ohio11,747,700
Oklahoma3,954,820
Oregon4,301,090
Pennsylvania12,820,900
Rhode Island1,056,160
South Carolina5,210,100
South Dakota903,027
Tennessee6,897,580
Texas29,472,300
Utah3,282,120
Vermont628,061
Virginia8,626,210
Washington7,797,100
West Virginia1,778,070
Wisconsin5,851,750
Wyoming567,025