The suburbs sometimes get a bad rap for not having enough cultural amenities or diversity. There’s one area, however, where they come out way ahead: cost.
On average, families will save $9,000 a year on housing and child care-related expenses by moving from the city to the suburbs, according to a new analysis by Zillow and Care.com.
Related: 3 Awesome Tiny Homes That Cost Less Than $45,000
The amount you’ll save varies greatly by metro area. New York City residents pay the highest premium over their suburban neighbors ($71,237 per year), followed by Chicago ($18,472) and Dallas ($14,128).
At the other end of the spectrum, there are some cities where you’ll end up paying more in the suburbs. Residents of Philadelphia save money by staying within the city limits to raise their families, with an annual average of $13,849 in fewer expenses than suburbanites in the same metro area. Other cities where it pays to stay in the city include Baltimore ($10,790) and Cleveland ($9,034).
While the report is a useful starting place, it does have some limitations. It’s likely most helpful to families with very young children. Once those kids hit school age, families often need to make more complicated decisions about whether to send their children to public school or pay for private school. Factoring private school tuition into this calculation would likely make for a significantly different list.