What does a homestudy consist of?
What exactly does a domestic homestudy consist of? We will probably be ready to start the process in a month or so and I thought I could go ahead and start the paperchase! I'm assuming every agency has slightly different requirements and fees for the homestudy?

Our experience
Agency gave us stack of forms to complete. Our family history, personal questions to answer, copies of some certificates such as marriage, birth, financial questions, tax return, personal references. Ran a criminal background check, and check to see if we'd ever been involved in child abuse/neglect.

After all the was submitted a date was set for visit to our home by a SW. The actual tour of home was quick and painless. The meat of the visit was a joint interview with dh & I, and then an individual one. Most of the questions were the same as we had already completed in the packet we sent them. Our SW was kind and easy to talk to. My nerves quickly subsided. I found I worried a long time for nothing. We passed with no problem, as I believe most do.

Fees do vary, but I hear often of home studies costing @ $1500 - $3000. I'm sure some are less and some more. Ours was in that range.

homestudies are things that strike fear in the heart of paparents when they hear about them but for the most part they are harmless. it's just a chance for the sw to get to know you better and to present a few things for you to think about. They check out your home and tell to to do things, like cover vents and add a pool gate. they also talk to you and your partner, just to see the dynamic in the relationship. they talked to us individually then as a group.

we cleaned our house til you could dine on the floor-completely unnecessary. made dh install carbon monoxide detectors, fire alarms and fire extinguishers in every room, etc.-unnecessary, though I'm sure appreciated. we even bought an escape ladder for dd's room since it's upstairs. our social worker didn't really care(poor dh). The best thing about the sw visits was that dh had to leave work early-and he never does that for me :rolleyes: . I kept telling her she should come every month for the rest of our lives.

fees were $1750 i think.

we tried to offer our sw some beverages or food, but she wouldn't accept anything but water.

one thing, tell the sw the truth, even if it's ugly. honesty is always the best policy here.

take care and good luck,

For our home study, we needed to gather all our financial documents, including any loan and mortgage balances, recent bank statements, stock statements, 401K, credit card balances, paycheck stubs, tax returns for the previous year, etc. We also needed to provide info on our insurance coverage and have a copy of our marriage license and driver's licenses. Our agency also did background checks on both of us. Our agency's fee for the home study was $1,500.

Prior to the study, we both completed autobiographies on our lives and backgrounds. Our agency gave us a list of questions to adddress in our autobiographies. Some of the topics we covered were our thoughts on adoption and child rearing, our childhood memories, how we met, info on our families, etc.

I also cleaned the house like crazy and was nervous about the home study. It turned out not to be a big deal. Our social worker was very friendly and not intimidating at all. She really put our minds at ease! Just remember that this is not a test, they just want to know more about you to see what type of parents you'll be. Smile

Good luck to you in your adoption journey!
Read our Journal...
I am working on a journal on this website that talks about ours. Just go under "Journals" and look for ours! Happy
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