The Most (and Least) Expensive Cities for Giving Birth

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While there is no inexpensive way of having a baby—parents will spend an estimated $245,000 on living expenses by the time their offspring reaches their 18th birthday—your delivery fees can vary depending on your location. And people in Northern California may have it worst of all.  

According to health care information company Castlight Health, it will cost San Francisco and Sacramento residents a rough average of $15,000 in medical fees to bring their cooing infant into the world. That’s a considerable bump from the third city on the list, Minneapolis, Minnesota, which has medical professionals handing over an average bill of around $11,000.

Castlight Health

The least expensive? Kansas City, Missouri, with an average baby bill of $6075.

Castlight believes the discrepancy in their Costliest Babies data research is due to provider consolidation in California markets, leading to fewer health care choices for employers and employees. And while the true cost to parents varies depending on your insurance plan and deductibles, an average out-of-pocket bill of $3400 isn't uncommon.

If you have a mini-me due soon, it pays to shop around: Castlight also found that prices for vaginal deliveries can fluctuate wildly, with Los Angeles practitioners charging between $4223 and $27,326. You can also try a birthing center instead of a hospital, which can lower costs by as much as 50 percent. Check with your insurance carrier to see if it's covered.

[h/t Money]