According to USDA’s annual report, “Expenditures on Children by Families,” a middle-income family with a child born in 2011 will spend approximately $234,900 for food, shelter, and other necessities to raise the child over the next 17 years.  This is an increase of 3.5% over 2010.  Housing costs are the largest expenditure averaging 30% of the total over 17 years.  Child care and education and food were the next largest expenses, accounting for 18% and 16% of the total cost over 17 years.