There are so many different things that kids do that are expensive, and as the years pass, it just seems like they get more and more expensive. Before, kids would just play soccer with their friends at the park, and it was all free. Now, they have to be in the clubs, they need the uniform, the right ball, and you need to bring snacks for the whole team.
All of this stuff adds up when you’re paying for it year after year, and if one of your kids is in it they all have to be in it. So these costs are now multiplied and kids aren’t just playing one sport, they’re playing three; and they’re in girl scouts and in music lessons.
Kids are costly and take a huge chunk out of your paycheck every month and you’re left scratching your head wondering what happened. Though you’ll never be able to get that money back, you will be able to claim these expenses on your taxes.
Every kid is in school, and though public school is supposed to be “free,” it’s not. Instead you’re left paying $50 for field trips and $2 a day for lunch, and those are just the basics. If your kid is in after-school clubs, music classes, or sports, you’re paying a whole lot more to support their educational experience.
For their music classes you have to pay to rent or buy an instrument, then you have to pay to send them to music festivals and private lessons. These things can add up to over $1,000 a year, which could be difficult for some parents to swing.
If your child is in sports you have to pay for uniforms, food, transportation, and doctor’s bills. And if your child is athletic, they’re playing multiple sports, which means you’re buying more things to support them.
Even though it is expensive, you want your kids to have these experiences, make friends, and do what they love. So when tax season comes around, be sure to claim all of these things to get a better return.
There are a couple times a year that parents shell out a lot of cash at once for their kids, and one of those times is right before school starts. Back-to-school shopping is when kids get most of their clothes for the year, and every year the clothes get more expensive and kids want more to to fill their closet.
You have to take them shopping though, because they’re out-growing their old clothes and as a parent you want them to look nice and have clothes that fit. Clothes are a necessity that should also be claimed when filling out your tax forms.
One of the most noticeable out-of-pocket expenses is food. Growing kids eat a lot, and teenagers will eat everything in sight. It takes a lot of money to put food on the table, and when you’re going through a box of cereal every-other day, you start to realize just how much money you spend at the grocery store.
Most kids are energetic, and they are doing things that shouldn’t be done, and they get hurt. This means an expensive trip to the emergency room–probably several times a year. These trips just come with the territory of having kids, accidents happen and you pay for them.
And when the kids turn into teenagers, they need braces for their teeth, and a dermatologist to take care of their acne. All of these medical bills add up fast, and you definitely have to pay them, but you can also claim them on your taxes to make sure that you get some money back, or get a break and don’t have to pay as many taxes.
Even though you can’t avoid paying the small fortune that it takes to raise your kids, you can make sure that you know about all of deductibles that apply to parents who are raising their kids. Do the research, claim everything, and take advantage of the deductibles.
Jack R. Landry has worked since 1988 as a tax attorney. He has written hundreds of articles about finding a Los Angeles Tax Lawyer.
Jack R. Landry