How much does it cost to ‘adult’ today?

Growing up, you probably dreamed about those key milestones to come in your life: launching your career, having a family, and settling into a home. But those dreams come with price tags, which can force you to adjust your goals to align with the size of your bank account. Whatever lies ahead, just remember that local community banks can be a great resource when it comes to those big financial decisions.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at just how much it takes to “adult” in today’s world.

Getting married

With pent-up demand after pandemic shutdowns, the average wedding cost surged to $30,000 in 2022, with a third of that going solely to rent ceremony and reception venues. If you’re among the nearly 40% of couples who plan to pay for their own wedding, that can create a significant hit to your finances on top of the general $6,000 already spent on an engagement ring and the $5,000 dedicated to the honeymoon. Ultimately, you need to decide what that’s worth within your overall financial picture.

“For decades to come, many couples will recall their wedding day as one of the happiest days of their lives, but they don’t want to be carrying significant debt from this single event into their marriage,” said Sarah Getzlaff, CEO of Security First Bank of North Dakota. “Our focus is on helping couples establish solid financial practices that will grow with them.”

Raising a family

From birth until your child blows out the candles on the 18th birthday cake, you’re going to fork over about $310,605 — for clothing, food, toys, and a whole lot more for that single offspring. An adoption could run up to $40,000 along with average annual spending of $17,000. The number of infertility treatments is rising, and a single IVF cycle can cost $30,000 or more. If you plan to cover your kid’s four-year college education, tack on another $142,204 in today’s dollars.

“These milestones are each wonderful in their own experiences,” said Getzlaff. “In many ways, the return on your investment with each key moment of ‘adulting’ is priceless, but you’ll sleep a little easier along that journey by being smart in your financial planning.”

Adulting isn’t easy, even for adults. If you need a little support, you can always check out the community banks in your area and get some one-on-one time to talk through your financial needs. Visit to find a community bank near you.