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Monthly child care costs nearly outpacing rent in the Phoenix area

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PHOENIX — Those who are renting in the Phoenix area and have young children will spend almost as much on child care as they spend on rent, a recent analysis found.

The HotPads report found that, at $1,315 per month, the monthly average cost of child care is just $155 less than the median monthly rent, which was at $1,470 per month.

The trend in the Phoenix area reflects one found nationwide: Nationally the median rent payment is $1,500 per month, just $115 more than the average monthly cost of childcare at $1,385.

However, more than a quarter of the 48 metro areas analyzed were found to have higher monthly child care costs than monthly rent payments. The city where this was the most brutal was Pittsburgh, where renters on average pay $255 more each month on child care than on rent.

In the past year, rents rose 2.3 percent, while child care costs rose 1.3 percent.

Even in markets where monthly rent outpaced monthly child care costs, such as San Jose, San Francisco and Las Angeles, renters with children could still expect to spend at least half a month’s rent on child care.

The analysis also found that monthly rent costs for two- and three-bedroom rentals are rising faster than one-bedroom rentals nationwide.

The median rent for two- and three-bedroom rentals rose almost 3 percent over the past year, while median rent for one-bedroom rentals rose about 2 percent.

“As rents and child care costs march steadily higher, keeping up with these rising costs may be one of many factors keeping parents up at night,” Joshua Clark, economist at HotPads, said in a statement.

“Rent appreciation has slowed from recent highs, but as the economic recovery matures, child care costs will likely continue to rise,” he added.

“For renters with young children in child care, that means any potential savings from softer rent appreciation could quickly be eroded by higher childcare expenses.”

The analysis was conducted using Care.com’s Care Index and data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

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