Children might be brilliant value for money in terms of love and entertainment, but they don't come cheap – and they're getting even more expensive.
In fact, new research reveals that the cost of raising a child has soared by an incredible 11 per cent.
Family shopping club KidStart found that parents on an average single income of £21,473 a year now fork out 49 per cent of what comes in on their kids, compared to 38 per cent 10 years ago.
That's an increase of 55.29 per cent, compared to the average rise in UK income of 25.07 per cent, making Britain one of the most expensive countries to raise children.
And if that news wasn't gloomy enough, KidStart warned the cost is going to soar because of recent cuts in child benefits and rising university fees.
Julian Robson, CEO of KidStart said: "Families are well aware that children are expensive but when this escalating cost is compared against the average rise in income we can clearly see why parents are burdened by financial pressures.
"With the recent cuts in child benefits, parents will need all the support and advice they can get to help make their money go further and combat the rise in living costs."
Other findings from the research showed that:
• 44 per cent of working parents say financial pressures are their greatest worry.
• The average UK house price in September 2012 was £233,000 just slightly less than it would cost for you to raise a child in London from cradle to college - £234,263
• The most expensive period of a child's life is the university years with an increase of 75 per cent from 2003 to 2011, caused by increased tuition fees over the last 10 years.
• Sweden is the cheapest country to raise a child as parents only spend 4.7 per cent of their income. Thirteen per cent is the average proportion of income that parents spend on their children across the globe.
Julian Robson added: "KidStart's aim is to try and ease those money worries and help parents save for their children's future. For families, knowing that they are saving money whenever they do a regular shop at one of our partner retailers is a huge relief as their money can stretch even further."