Adopting a child is an exciting time for any family. There’s so much preparation that goes into the process leading up to adoption and in the beginning stages of parenthood. This includes making sure your home is prepared for adding a new member to your household, having all your finances in order, and much more in between.
There are a few things that you may not realize prior to the adoption process that could be beneficial for you to know. This could be a tool to help you better manage your money with the addition of a new family member, or simply helpful resources about the process and what to expect. These tips are beneficial to know before going through adoption, even though people may not mention them as often.
1. Consider Finding Your Forever Home Prior to Adoption
Once you adopt a child, they likely have already moved at least once at a young age, especially if they were in foster care. Avoiding the moving process again after the adoption can help your new child feel at home sooner.
Try to purchase a home where you feel comfortable living for a while prior to bringing in a new family member. If you’re financially worried about owning and affording your forever home, consider a 30-year fixed mortgage, which allows you to make lower monthly payments compared to shorter loan periods. The money you save from having a lower monthly payment on your home can be used through the adoption process or for more necessities you’ll need once your child comes home.
2. It Can Be Expensive, But There Are Strategies to Help Pay For It
There are a lot of fees that you may not think of when you’re planning to adopt. Things such as travel costs, attorney fees, home visits, and adoption professionals all cost money and can add up quickly. The average cost of adoption in the USA through an agency can cost anywhere from $20,000 to up to $70,000, but this is no reason to not pursue adoption. Having a financial plan will set you up for success.
There are multiple financial strategies and resources that can be used to help you cover the fees attached to adoption. Look into things such as grants or create a fundraiser to help you pay for adoption costs. Also, check with your employer to see if they have any benefits that could contribute to the cost. Every little bit can help, so any way that you can think of to help raise some money could be a very useful strategy.
3. There Are Different Adoption Laws In Each State
Depending on which state you reside in within the United States, there’s a specific set of adoption laws and criteria to follow. There are very few federal adoption laws within the U.S., so it’s up to the states to have many of their own laws on the matter.
Looking into state adoption laws should be one of the first steps you take after deciding to adopt. Make sure that you review the specific adoption laws within your state before you begin the adoption process. If you don’t, you could be faced with some potential roadblocks you may not have known about.
4. The Adoption Process Can Take Longer Than You Think
There are so many steps to the adoption process. When you add them all up, in some cases, the length from starting your journey to adopting a child can take up to, or even over, a year. It’s essential to remain patient during the process and not become frustrated with how long it may take. The end result will certainly be worth it.
With this being said, there are some things that could help potentially shorten the time to adopt. Strategies such as working with multiple adoption professionals and making sure your adoption profile is perfect are ways to help cut down the time of the process.
5. Get Your Paperwork Together Ahead of Time
There’s plenty of paperwork and forms that you’ll have to fill out throughout the process of adoption. Do some research and figure out what specific forms you’ll need to fill out and prepare them ahead of time.
This will help avoid delaying any processes and unnecessary stress. You don’t want to be scrambling to find all the different paperwork needed on hand right before certain appointments. Keeping this aspect of the adoption process organized will lead to much less stress down the line and keep the timeline running smoothly.
The adoption process, although very rewarding, can seem to be a daunting task. But that shouldn’t mean that you shy away from taking it on. There are plenty of things that will pop up throughout the adoption process that you may not have been informed about beforehand. But even the unexpected aspects of adoption have strategies that can combat them and make your adoption process as smooth as possible.