Children a rare luxury as couples count cost of loving (Aust)

Sydney Morning Herald December 10, 2008

GROWING financial uncertainty and an ageing population mean families are now just as likely to be made up of a couple with no dependent children as a couple with children living at home. By 2026 the couples without children at home will have overtaken those with children as the most common type of family in Australia, a new report on family composition shows. But this is likely to accelerate should the economic turmoil worsen. The report, by the Federal Government and to be published today, suggests financial concerns such as big mortgages and job uncertainty are among the main reasons couples delay having children or have fewer than they would like.

“There are more younger couples delaying having children or not having children at all,” says the report, Australian Families 2008. …”Although the number of women having only one child or no children is increasing, more Australians would prefer to have four or more children than to have no children or only one child,” the report says.