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How are you budgeting for your adoption?
Posted: 13 January 2010 10:40 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  8

I was hoping to find some figures here, because we are at the very beginning stage of considering adopting.  We would be adopting an older child through the state, nothing international.  Our state website seems to make it sound like little more than laywers fees, but I am not sure. We haven’t stated the homestudy or selected an agency as we’re still a bit overwhelmed by the whole process so it’s not like we have a caseworker to ask…has anyone here adopted domestically through their state?  If so, do you have some round figures?  Neither of our employers offers anything for assistance.

Posted: 21 January 2010 09:06 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  4

We are adopting through Bethany and our understanding in MI is that if you are adopting foster children then cost is minimal and comes with federal aid in many cases. However, we are adoption domestic infant and our cost is based on our income which in the end puts us at about $24,000.

Posted: 05 April 2010 06:08 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  8

The cost of adoption (even when you consider the tax credit) is outrageous. What mainly angers me is that with most places there is a “flat” cost of adoption, and then another $10-30,000 added on top of it as a ‘sliding scale’ based on income. This is just taking people’s money because they have it? Well I have news for them, we don’t have it, despite what our pay-stubs say. In fact, we don’t have any of it. I am so discouraged right now about the financing of adoption that I can’t see straight.

One huge point to make is that you can only get the tax credit after the adoption is FINAL. It will not be there to help you FUND the adoption.

Everything you read will tell you there are so many sources of funding. This is not true. There are SOME sources, but if they are not available to YOU, they are no help.

For example: everything I’ve read mentions an employer adoption benefits program with reimbursement of up to $5000. Just like the books say, I asked my employer if they had adoption benefits. They do not. I asked if they’d be willing to consider adoption benfefits, and linked them to materials from the Dave Thomas Foundation about how to start adoption benefits - they were not interested in the least.

Another example: everything I’ve read mentions getting help from your faith community if you have one. I approached my church. Do you have an adoption ministry/missions? They checked and the answer was no, they don’t and never have. The minister to missions did not indicate any interest in starting one, even though I know her personally. So that’s another dead end.

Then you will read about grants/scholarships. These do exist, I’m not saying they don’t. But the problem you run into is two fold.
1) Almost every single one of these will not allow you to apply until after a home study has been completed. What that means is that you will have to sink $1500 minimum out of pocket into this process before you can even apply for financial assistance.
2) The majority of these organizations I’ve read about offer a gift of just a couple thousand dollars. When you’re facing $25,000 minimum, that does not put you in reach of affording adoption.

Garage sales are great but once again, the $500 you rake in won’t even cover a home study.

Foster adoption is a true low cost option, but here in Texas, all foster kids are average 8 yrs old and up, all have been removed from their homes for abuse or neglect, and if it matters to you, all are African American with the exception of large sibling groups of other ethnicities. In other words, not an option for a family wanting to adopt a baby or anything close to that.

What I would love to hear is how someone REALLY paid for their adoption. My husband and I do not have savings besides our 401Ks which add up to less than $10000. Not only would we be subject to heavy fines and taxes if we withdrew that money, we would also have no retirement. We are not independently wealthy and we make less than $100K put together. Neither of our jobs is going to give us adoption benefits. Our church is not going to give us any assistance. Our parents are not in a position to give us any money.

I am at a desperate loss for how to make this happen. I have read books, researched, we know this is what we want…but there is no money.

I would love some advice or stories of real-world experience. Thanks in advance…

Posted: 01 July 2010 09:47 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  3

I have to believe that the demographics you are quoting for the State of Texas are generalizations, because I hear the same stats about California all the time.  I adopted my beautiful 5 year old daughter out of foster care at 11 mos., when she was already legally freed.  Her adoption was finalized six months later.  The whole process, from me getting my foster license to finalization, was about a year and a half.  Was I lucky?  You bet.  But why wouldn’t you TRY?

The whole thing cost me ZERO dollars.  My daughter has a monthly stipend, similar to child support, which she receives until she is 18.  Her health insurance is 100% paid for by the state until she is 18.  I continue to be surprised and saddened by the number of people who dismiss foster adoption because “there aren’t any babies”  or “only sibling groups are available”, because it’s just NOT TRUE.

If money is an issue, or even if it’s NOT, please consider adopting a U.S. foster child who needs and wants you.  Go through the process - here in California, it was a wonderful process, full of dedicated, caring, terribly overworked professionals.  You will tell your social worker how you want to start your family: the age, the sex, the race, ethnicity, medical history…..and then you wait.  The more restrictions you check off, the longer you might wait.  But your child will come….good luck!

Posted: 03 July 2010 06:07 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  1

I second what Carlsbad Mama has to say.  I social worker friend works for the county up here in N.Cal and she says there are infants all of the time.  Typically, the infants are removed at the hospital because the mother had reason for the state to be involved, but she says there are definitely infants.  I’d say don’t dismiss foster care right away.  We didn’t.

Posted: 19 August 2010 04:18 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  5

Whitney -

I’m from Texas. We’re a normal couple with normal jobs and normal paychecks. Our families aren’t wealthy. We haven’t approached our church about financial support b/c it’s a small church strugglin to pay its monthly bills as is. Just in the last couple weeks, we met a birthmom…who’s due in December….and we’re a little panicked over the THOUSANDS of dollars we’re gonna have due b/w here and there. So this is what I know…

There are a few - albiet VERY few - agencies here in Texas that charge a flat fee, period. There are a few more that charge a relatively low flat fee ($16,000-$19,500….relative only to adoption, of course…not to our pockets!) w/the only variables being additional financial help for the birthmom. I’m not sure where yall live, but I’d be glad to give you the names of these smaller agencies I’ve found.

We’re currently in the process of filling out grant applications. I’m with ya - if you’re seekin a domestic newborn adoption, there don’t seem to be many grants out there available to us. But I’m gonna try to take whatever I can get. I think I researched about 25 different grant organizations and found 4 that we even qualify to apply for. Even though it might only be a couple thousand dollars, that’s better than nothin and definitely worth the effort of tryin.

My husband and I have not pursued the foster care/state route to any significant extent, so I’m not even sure if the CPS and foster care systems are separate in Texas. However, I personally know some folks who work for CPS who have told me themselves that there are always infants needing to be adopted. I do know that the cost is SUBSTANTIALLY less, and that the adoptive families are almost always given stipends….and help w/the kids’ college educations later on.

For several years now, we’ve had our jobs - way less than $100,000/yearly combined…my husband’s 401K…and about $15,000 in investments that we were using to earn some money toward a down payment on a house or an early start on college funds for our kids, etc…but this $15,000 has been ignored (which was our intent) so that we wouldn’t spend it. We’ve been intentionally saving toward our adoption for….a year-ish, maybe? We started with less than $10,000 in a general savings account. We cut back on our general spending - changed our cell phone plan, lowered our number of tv channels, ate out less and cooked more, used coupons, stopped buyin new clothes, even cut back on the amt of money we allotted ourselves to spend on christmas gifts, and we literally cash in our change jar to go on vacation… we almost have the $20,000 needed for the agency’s fees. If we can’t scrape up the last of the money in a couple months, we’ll sale our little fishin boat that we love. And that’s it - nothin fancy, no generous gifts or surprise lottery winnings…just livin on a lot less… and still worried smile

Maybe that helps?

Posted: 22 October 2013 11:58 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  7

We chose to take out a loan.  There are many banks out there that offer good loans at low interest rates for such purposes.

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