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How much will your child cost?

Saving for your child: now and later

Although “How much does a child cost?” seems like a strange question, it’s a good idea to take such costs into account when planning your finances. That’s why we’ve put together an overview of the main costs. If you have some money left over at any given time, you can start saving for your child. That way, you can get them off to a flying start when they leave home, go to university or want to get their driving licence. If you’d rather save for a specific goal, such as university, you can never start too soon. Be sure to start making a plan in good time, which is something we can help you with.


Average costs for a child

A calculation by Statistics Netherlands gives a good picture. According to them, one child costs an average of 17% of your family’s income. This is taking into account holiday pay, child benefit and other allowances. Two children cost 26% of your total income, three children 33% and four children 40%. If you’d like to know whether you can still make ends meet when you have another child, request free personal budget advice from the Dutch National Institute for Family Finance Information (Nibud).

Costs for a child aged 0 to 4 years

When you have a baby, you’re faced with quite a lot of new costs. You need to buy nappies and a pram, for instance, and furnish the baby’s room. These costs are roughly as follows:

  • For the layette (clothes, baby care items and the baby's room), Nibud estimates an amount of €688.10.
  • Parents spend an average of €516 on a new pram.
  • Nappies cost €36.50 a month on average.
  • Your energy and water bills will probably also go up by around €10 to €20 a month.
  • Food for a child up to age 3 costs just over €70 a month on average.

(Source: Nibud.nl)


If your child will be going to a childcare facility, make sure you do not to underestimate the costs. They’re relatively high and you’ll be paying them for quite a while. Sending two children to day care 3 days a week will set you back nearly €2000 a month. Luckily, you’ll get quite a significant amount back in the form of childcare benefit. The amount of this benefit will depend on factors such as your income, the number of hours of childcare and the hourly rate.

Costs for a child aged 4 to 12 years

By the time your child goes to school, your finances will probably have changed quite a bit. You’ll no longer be paying for nappies and your childcare costs (if applicable) will go down. Your costs will be roughly as follows:

  • Clothes: about €35 per month
  • Food: €128 a month*
  • Pocket money: from €0.50 (for a 5-year-old) to €2.30 (11-year-old) per week
  • School: voluntary parental contribution of €50 per year
  • Childcare: 1 afternoon a week including holidays, but excluding childcare benefit will set you back €180 per month

(*Source: Nibud.nl)

Costs for a child aged 12 to 18 years

When your child turns 12 or starts secondary school, your costs will change again. Your child will no longer need childcare, will probably have a mobile phone and might get a clothing allowance. On average, children get:

• Pocket money: from €15 (for a 12-year-old) to €30 (18-year-old) per week

• Clothing allowance: from €30 (for a 12-year-old) to €50 (18-year-old) per month

School costs vary from one school to another and consist of a voluntary parental contribution and costs for extra equipment, such as pens, dictionaries and possibly a laptop.

Saving for university or a driving licence

If you want to help your child out with tuition fees or the costs of getting a driving licence, it’s a good idea to start saving now. Alternatively, you can start investing to get the biggest return. Be sure to also read our blog on saving for university or a driving licence and gear your savings towards your child’s future.

If you’d rather get straight to work, put together a financial plan for your child’s studies now. 

Open a KidsFuture Savings Account

The sooner you start saving, the bigger your child's nest egg will be. Open a KidsFuture Savings Account (KinderToekomst Spaarrekening) and start today. It will make it that little bit easier for your child or grandchild to go to university, get a driving licence or find a place of their own.

A baby on the way

Having a baby is an exciting event! But there’s a lot you’ll need to take care of before the baby arrives, because the baby’s room, the midwife and maternity care won’t appear by magic. You’ll also need to take care of important financial matters, including after the birth.

Children and damage: are you covered?

Oops! Your child accidentally knocked over an expensive vase at your aunt’s house, or had a mishap at the babysitter’s place and broke something. Who is liable for the damage? You as the parent, or your child?