Is raising a kid really that expensive? Personal experience based on a toddler and an infant.
This is a rough break down of how much we are spending per month for both kids. We send both of them to sparkletots infant and child care. We dont have a helper and we are a dual income family.
The misc. cost covers things like visits to indoor playgrounds, buying of toys, clothing , visit to PD and etc. One disclaimer here is, if you have a sickly child, this cost is going to balloon, especially those less than 1 year old. That's why i roughly estimated around 200 per month for the 4 months old, whereas the 3 years old is around 150 per month.
For competitive society like Singapore nowadays, enrichment class is a must for most parents. However, to us we think that kids should spend their childhood having fun. Playing with parents, playing with grandparents, running around, playing at outdoor playground. That's why this component is missing for us.
I was just looking at the cost of enrichment classes in this link and also the cost of private child and infant care here. For infant and child care, i am just taking 2000 per month each kid, with 600 subsidies for infant and 300 subsidies for N1. You may think that spending 2400 per month on kids is really expensive. Wait till you hear about parents who send their kids to private infant care or child care and also enrichment classes. This can cost more than 2500 dollars per kid.
Assuming we decided to send our kids to the private schools and 4 enrichment classes.
Now you really can see the difference if the parents decide on the premium package of raising a kid! Thus, to us, it's not too expensive to raise a kid in Singapore. However, it is highly dependent on the mentality and earnings of the parents. If you are earning lots, then i guess just spend away. Having kids is a happy thing, so pls dont stress yourself out financially by wanting the most expensive things for your kids. Your kids will not be able to tell the difference. However, they will be very happy if you can spend more time with them than to keep on stressing over how to earn more money to send them to more enrichments so that they will not lose out to their peers in the future.
You may think that we are cheapo parents by saving on the money. We are not. To us, as long as the kid shows interest in something and really want to learn more about it, we will spend the money. We just dont see the need to compete with other parents especially for avant-garde educations like heguru. At 6 months old, my first born cant even tell his feet from his hands and he is supposed to be paying attention to a 85 dollars class? I dont know, but this is just us. Perhaps it is really useful to the kid. We just dont know.
I am glad that we are not the only couple who are like this. I have a very close friend who have similar thoughts as how kids should be raised as well. Basically, raised happy and healthy.