Those child-care bills are no joke. Do you ever let yourself fantasize about all of the cool stuff you could be spending your money on instead?
Of course, no two families’ needs are the same, but on average, a family spends $165 per week per kid for child care, according to Pew Research. Using that number, an average family with two kids is looking at a monthly bill of about $1,320. On day care. Yikes.
That’s a lot of coin. We couldn’t help but think: That would cover one seriously fancy car payment. Here are a few dream cars you could afford for less then you’re probably spending every month on child care.
1. Lexus NX 300h
Starting at $39,720, this Lexus hybrid SUV could be yours for less than the cost for two kids in day care. In fact, with an estimated car payment of only about $1,160.18 per month, you’d even have a little left over for gas. This car is a tech geek fantasy, with features including smartphone docking for wireless charging and a high-performance hybrid engine. The Lexus Enform platform connects your car to your smartphone apps and gives you ultimate connectivity no matter where you are.
2. BMW 4 Series Coupé
This cute coupé (remember this is a fantasy without kids and the need for maximum car seats) is a definite dream car for the sophisticated lady. You deserve it. With leather seats that smell like a gorgeous new handbag, this car is all about curve-hugging, driving performance with total luxury. And at $1,190 per month for an auto loan, you’re still spending less than you already do on child care every month.
3. Mercedes C250 Coupé
Image: Mercedes-Benz USA
That’s right. For just $1,177.86 per month, this gorgeous ride could be all yours. A two-door is just right for you and your boyfriend, Ryan Gosling, when you take your regular rides up the coast. If a girl’s gonna dream, go big. This baby has everything you’d expect from a Mercedes: leather, an optional keyless ignition, heated seats and gadgets including voice control and slick multimedia interface.
4. Range Rover Evoque
Image: Range Rover
Just a dash of Sporty Spice gives this Range Rover enough edge to give this mom-mobile serious sex appeal. With a sticker price of just over $41,000, the payment on a loan for the full amount would run about $1,200 a month. The waterproof features might make this SUV seem rugged, but optional features like an iPad holder and even a cooler for the backseat armrest would make even the most remote outpost seem downright civilized.
5. Porsche Boxster
So, this Porsche Boxster comes in slightly over budget, but if you had a decent trade-in you’d probably make it. To finance the full $53,095 sticker price, you’d pay about $1,550 a month. Well worth it to pull up to the restaurant for girls’ night in this little looker. For such a tiny car, this thing is mighty. Of course it’s fast (up to 265 miles per hour), but it’s also got all the creature comforts a girl needs on the road — a hands-free smartphone connection, heated side mirrors and an option for a Bose surround sound system to give you the ultimate driving soundtrack.
But, of course, you wouldn’t change your real life for anything. Back here in reality, moms don’t get a lot of luxury, but what we get from those smiling faces every day makes those outrageous monthly day-care bills worth it beyond measure.
Editor’s note: The figures for the above monthly payments were calculated by taking the full sticker price of the cars and plugging them into a payment calculator, which doesn’t take into account fluctuating interest rates, individual credit scores, trade-ins or anything else.
This post was brought to you by Autotrader.