If you and your spouse are considering adoption, congratulations. So many children are in need of loving homes, and to bring one into yours is a wonderful thing. While adoption is exciting, the process itself can be exhausting and expensive. To make this time less stressful, keep these tips in mind.
Plan and Prepare
Parenthood alone is a huge monetary investment; raising a child can cost upward of $245,000 not including college, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reports. With adoption, there are also numerous additional upfront costs.
Adopting through foster care is almost always the least expensive route, usually requiring a cash outlay of $2,500 or less, according to U.S. News & World Report. Going through traditional adoption channels can be significantly pricier. Adopting in the U.S. averages between $8,000 and $40,000, and adopting internationally usually totals between $15,000 to $30,000.
In addition to understanding how much you may be facing in fees, it’s important to know how much of your financial history the adoption agency will look at. These organizations need to confirm that your family is able to support your child. At the time of a home study, you will be asked to produce pay stubs or tax returns as well as information pertaining to your investments, retirement funds, income, assets and monthly expenses. Be prepared to share as much as is asked, because this will influence how smoothly your adoption journey goes.
Ideas for Financing
If you have a loving heart and open home, don't let monetary worries stop you from bringing a little one into your family. There are options for nearly any financial situation, as long as you do some research and put some thought into it. Take into consideration:
- Many agencies don’t require all fees be paid upfront and will work with you on payment terms that meet your family’s needs. Ask about any payment plans the agency offers.
- Look into loans through the National Adoption Foundation, or if you’re in need of more help, see if you qualify for a grant from the foundation.
- See what assistance is available to you through your state government.
- If you receive periodic payments from a structured settlement or annuity, you may be able to sell your future payments for a lump sum of cash now. You could then use the money to help fund your adoption.
If your heart is set on adoption, there’s no need to let your bank account stop you from following through on this beautiful journey. Just make sure you educate yourself on the costs involved along with other requirements such as home studies and financial history reviews. If you decide to continue down this path, there are plentiful financing options available. Whichever financing route you choose, what matters most is that your hearts are ready to embrace your new little love. Be as prepared as possible on the financial and administrative end of things, so all you need to do once your newest family members arrives is fall head over heels in love.