A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Making Ends Meet: Group’s Family Budget Calculator breaks down monthly costs for NKy, other regions


A two-parent, two-child family in Kentucky must earn at least $4,184 a month, or an annual total of $57,763, to make ends meet, according to the Economic Policy Institute’s updated Family Budget Calculator released today.

Meanwhile, it costs at least $24,906 for a single person without children to meet his or her basic needs.

According to the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy, the calculator shows what’s required for families to attain a secure yet modest standard of living in 618 communities throughout the country, including seven across Kentucky.

A breakdown of the monthly costs for a two-parent, two-child family by location in Kentucky (annual needs in parenthesis):

• Northern Kentucky: $5,188 ($62,259)
• Elizabethtown: $4,184 ($57,763)
• Rural areas: $4,834 ($58,005)
• Owensboro: $4,898 ($58,780)
• Bowling Green: $4,935 ($59,218)
• Ashland: $4,996 ($59,949)
• Louisville: $5,064 ($60,764)
• Lexington: $5,074 ($60,883)

The Family Budget Calculator includes the cost of housing, food, transportation, child care, health care and other basic necessities such as clothing and household supplies. Costs vary widely by family type as well as geographic area. Notably, among two-parent, two-child families, child care costs exceed rent in the vast majority of family budget areas.

Three major changes were included in this family budget update. In addition to four new family types (single and married couples without children and families with four children), the new health cost calculation reflects premiums available in the health insurance exchanges established by the Affordable Care Act, and the “other necessities” category includes additional items previously excluded, such as housekeeping supplies and telephone services.

View the calculator here.

Recent Posts

Leave a Comment