Adoption Home Study FAQ
What do you look for when you do the home visit?
Do we need to baby proof the home for the visit?
We want to see your home in its everyday condition, so please don’t spend hours cleaning ?. The purpose of our visit is to ensure the home is safe and livable and to answer any questions you have!
How long does a home study take?
How much does a home study cost?
The total fee including the application fee is typically $1400-$1800 depending on where you live. There are a few background checks completed by third parties that require additional fees. You will pay them directly and we have no control over their pricing. Additionally, once you achieve placement you will need to complete post placement visits.
What happens after the home study report is complete?
After you have an approved home study, you will want to work on matching with a mom. We highly recommend using an adoption consultant for this. Once you are signed on with us, we have a list of suggested consultants we provide to our families. You can also work with adoption agencies to obtain matching; however, we just caution you that many agencies charge a $10-20k fee to register with them. We highly advise against doing so. There are also many adoption facilitators who are not licensed with the state. They act a a third party to match you and then basically you are done. Again, we advise against using these providers!
Will your home study report work for DCF/the state?
In most cases, yes. Be sure to tell us you are wanting to adopt from the state prior to beginning your home study.
How long is a home study report valid for?
The home study report is valid for one year from the date it is signed.
What happens if we aren't matched within that 1-year timeframe?
You will need to update your home study and related background checks. The update fee is generally $850 plus any additional travel fees (depending on where you live).
What is the average length of time your families wait before they're matched?
What we see industry wide is that a family waits on average 18 months; however, that is an average. Some families match right away and others take much longer.
What is a "situation"?
That is the word for the write up and information provided to adoptive families when birth mom is looking to be matched with an adoptive family. The “situation” is often filled with information about mom, her pregnancy/prenatal care, family history, etc. The depth of information in these write ups vary from agency to agency as each agency decides how much information to put in the write up, aka situation.
What information will be given about the birth mom before we are selected?
In most instances, moms will receive your adoption profile book, which you will create and decide what to share in. The agency does not release your home study to a birth mom. If a mom has specific questions around your information (such as city you live in, job, etc.) that is not in your profile book, we obtain your permission before sharing.
What does a birth mom look for in a family?
Each birth mom looks for different things. Some are looking at whether a family is sporty or musical. Others care about what city/state an adoptive family lives in. Some moms look at education levels and career choices. This is why your adoption profile book is so important; you want to show mom who you are and what life for her baby will look like if she selects you.
Will our birth mom have access to our home study report? Will she have access to any of the documents we filled out (i.e. self-study, references, financials, background details, etc.)?
No. With our agency mom is not provided a copy of this information. It is highly suggested that you ask this to any other agencies you work with.
Can we be gender specific in what we want/prefer?
Yes, absolutely! We do caution that many adoption consultants are not willing to work with you if you are gender specific. Be sure to ask them about this prior to signing on with them.
Is age a factor for the prospective adoptive parents?
This is a bit of a complex answer. Many birth moms do take into consideration the age of adoptive parents. For purposes of a home study, each state has different laws. Across the board, a general rule of thumb used is if both adoptive parents ages combined are over 90, additional conversations will be warranted.
What are the average costs/fees of adoption?
Since Covid, many agencies have raised the fees for adoption. It is not uncommon for an adoption to be in the $45-60k range right now. There are ways to keep this on the lower end of the scale, such as matching with a birth mom whose expense needs are lower.
How do people 'afford' to adopt?
There are many options, and adoptive families get super creative to include: fundraisers, grants, and various types of loans (such as a home equity loan).
What happens if the birth mom changes her mind?
We call this a disrupted adoption. It is so very difficult for all involved, including birth mom. Birth moms have the right to decide to parent and you will want to take time to grieve and regroup before moving forward again.
What is/are a reason(s) you would deny a family?
The most common reasons include criminal history, prior child abuse history, unstable marital relationship, or financial strains where your debt to income ratio does not support adoption.
I have been denied a home study through DCF; will/can you work with me?
It is possible to obtain a private home study; however, we are no longer conducting home studies for families that have been denied a home study at any time.
I have had a home study done by another agency and they denied me; will you work with me?
At this time we are no longer completing home studies for families who have been previously denied.
I have past criminal history, can I still adopt?
Every case is different. Complete our application so we can talk about your specific arrests and criminal history.
We Want To See You Win
We aim to create a partnership between birth parents, adoptive parents, and the loved one they’ll come to share. Our promise is that every home study experience is supportive, educational, and interactive.