House prices contribute to smaller families
Posted: 10 Apr 2006 09:54:44 GMT
The average British family now consists of only 1.3 children as parents find they are unable to cope with a range of spiralling costs.
This is the message from Skipton Building Society, whose research points to rising house prices as a key contributory factor.
While the traditional statistic in the UK was 2.4 children, the Office of National Statistics found in 2004 that the figure had slumped to 1.8.
The fact that this has apparently fallen again is a measure of the financial strain under which many are living, with 20 per cent now opting to have no children at all.
"There are a lot of factors contributing to this, including consumer debt, pension shortfalls and rising house prices - all of which has led many people to choose to enjoy the lifestyle they have instead of adding more pressure with the cost of bringing up a child," said Jennifer Holloway, head of media relations at Skipton Building Society.
"What's particularly unfortunate is the number of people who wish to have a family but are being forced to delay doing so for purely monetary reasons," she added.
Others are instead choosing to be more astute in searching for a property to ensure they get the best possible deal, with many looking online to find the most realistically priced house.