Almost half of thirtysomething women would prefer to get on the property ladder than have a baby, according to a poll of 2,000 women.
The survey, commissioned by Grazia magazine, revealed why an increasing number of young women are opting out of motherhood.
A third of childless women questioned said they simply did not want to have children. Money was also a key factor. Over half said they could not afford a baby even if they wanted one while 47 per cent said they would rather spend their money on buying a home. Just over a quarter confessed they would prefer a £100,000 salary than a baby.
The survey was commissioned to tie in with the film release of I Don't Know How She Does It to find out what women want from life.
The report also revealed that an increasing number of women feel they have left it too late to have a baby. Finding The One was also an issue with 43 per cent saying they did not meet the right man in time. A third admitted they put their career first and 43 per cent said they did not meet the right man in time.
Of those who had become mothers, 13 per cent said they regretted their decision. Mothers who had returned to work were found to be the happiest and most fulfilled despite being poorer and more stressed. But they said that cheaper childcare, more flexible working hours and more tax breaks for mothers would make life easier.
Jane Bruton, Grazia's editor-in-chief said: "We were really surprised a third of childless women admitted they didn't want to start a family. It's clear from our survey that having a baby has just dropped off the to-do list for a whole generation of twentysomethings."
She added: "It's time we started looking at the support systems out there for women so the new generation don't feel pushed into making a choice between motherhood and a career."