On average, in-home child care in the U.S. costs families about $28,354 per year, while in-center care costs $11,456, according to a recent survey from Care.com.
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However, cost, quality and affordability vary significantly from state-to-state, affecting where parents can expect to receive the best services.
Care.com found that Connecticut had the best child care, where in-home care cost about $31,162 and in-center care cost $11,456 annually. Those costs amounted to about 28 percent of the median income in the state, while quality and availability of nannies, daycare and childcare centers received top ratings.
Following Connecticut was New Hampshire, where the cost of in-home child care was slightly above the national average at $28,645 per year. Meanwhile, the cost of in-center child care was slightly below the national average, at $10,182 per year. Quality received three out of four stars, according to Care.com’s index, while availability received top marks. Costs for child care in the state, on average, were equivalent to 20 percent of the median income.
Massachusetts ranked third, where quality and availability received four stars, but costs were higher than average. Per year, in-home care was about $31,827, while in-center care cost $13,208. Costs were equal to 33 percent of the statewide median income.
The Northeast dominated the top 10 spots, with Rhode Island (4), Vermont (6), Maine (8) and New Jersey (9) all ranking high when it came to quality, affordability and availability. The exceptions were Minnesota, which took the fifth spot, and had overall health care costs equal to 22 percent of the state’s median income; Maryland (7), where in-home care cost about $29,100 per year; and Hawaii (10), where both in-home and in-center care priced close to the national averages.
On the other end of the spectrum, West Virginia ranked worst in terms of child care, where average costs were equal to nearly half of the state’s median income. Mississippi, New Mexico, Nevada and Oklahoma rounded out the bottom five.
Care.com developed its rankings based on the costs, quality and availability of nannies, childcare centers and family daycares.