3OYS examines the cost of raising a child

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- Raising kids may be challenging, but it's also pretty expensive. According to the experts, it's getting pricier every year.

The world ogled over the baby who would someday be king, but for the rest of us a little bundle of joy means big changes in the way a couple spends, saves, and plans for the future.

A recent study shows the average cost of raising a child from infancy through young adulthood in the U-S adds up to about $235,000 dollars. And that does not include college.

Those added expenses begin immediately for parents, with the car seat to the crib where your baby will sleep.

It's wise to adjust a household budget before the baby's arrival, particularly if one parent will be taking time away from work for child care.

It’s also important to re-assess insurance needs. In addition to having health coverage for pregnancy and the delivery, make sure the little one is covered from birth for visits to the pediatrician and prescriptions.

New parents may also consider disability or life insurance policies, to keep a family financially secure in the event of something unexpected happens.

And estate planning is another must-do, a will or trust appointing a guardian in case of a tragedy.

And of course don't forget about saving for higher learning. Starting a tuition fund now puts money in the bank that can also earn interest.

When it comes to gift giving, you might want to consider telling your family and friends to not waste money on teddy bears and toys, instead tell them to contribute to a bank account.