Anyone NOT clean their house for home study?
I plan to have EVERYTHING in order/in its place for the safety inspection b/c they want to see where the meds are, etc. But for the home visit with the licensing worker.... I'm just having a mental block against scrambling around for this. The visit was supposed to be last week, and she had to postpone to this week. Then she had to postpone again, and then cancelled that meeting and now I'm waiting to hear from her sometime next week as to when we can reschedule.

If we hadn't been through a vaguely similar process with DS's adoption, I'd be freaking out. I did actually freak out during the adoption. And now, if I'd cleaned like a madwoman for this home visit, I'd have cleaned the entire house 3 times for nothing by now. Fortunately, I'm trying to be more laid back about it, but now I'm wondering.... Is it more important for the house to be clean when you're going through CPS/fostering v private adoption? They keep telling us in class that foster parents are held to much higher standards than bios, but that's more in terms of health care, discipline, etc. Does that apply to clean homes, too? Should I be scrubbing away at every corner?

FTR, I'm not the best housekeeper. My house is relatively clean, with the requisite amount of dirt and dust that come with a preschooler and a dog, and a little clutter here and there. So not Martha Stewart, even on a good day!
swd, I was wondering the same thing! I just called to get started on our homestudy for a private adoption. Havent even got paperwork filled out yet. I wondered how clean the house needed to be......I cant wait to see of the replys on thisSmile
For the intial homestudy and recertification visits, I usually clean like a madwoman. For the monthly visits with the caseworker, I clean up, but not quite to the same extent. I make sure the dishes are done, counters clean and floors vacuumed, etc. But I also tend to just throw whatever is lying around in a laundry basket and shove it in a closet if I'm short on time! Smile My CWs have been great - I have 2, well almost 3 toddlers, so they understand if the house isn't up to Martha Stewart standards!
I didn't go crazy, but I did do somethings that I think made me feel better having someone come over to check out our house. I made sure the bathroom was super clean with a hint of bleach in the air LOL. In the kitchen all the stuff that didn't have to be on the counter I took it off and stored it away. I kept a coffee mug or so in the clean sink (I didn't want to look like I was trying too hard). Wiped down the doors, door jams and light switches, those things get gross. When it came to the kid's rooms I made them clean them..when he toured the house I said "the kids clean their rooms for your visit", my daughter room was not at all looking good and he just laughed. I wanted to show him that my kids are just kids and that they have their own responsibilities when it comes to things around the house. We have a junk room that I was super worried about showing them! When he looked at it we said kids will not be in here and it gets locked. He said I have one of these to so don't worry about it....phew
OH they will check all mini blind cords!!!
Just make sure it looks "normally" clean, don't worry if you have a stack of clean towels sitting on the dryer, leave them there. You want the house to look lived in, that a kid in a stressful time can walk in a feel like he/she is in a warm caring environment.
From what our guy told me, he's been in some gross unsafe homes so that made ours look like something out of a a Better Homes & Gardens magazine (thanks i guess:confused: ). We passed with flying colors, YOU WILL TOO!!!:banana:
Waiting, we adopted DS through a private agency and they barely looked at anything. If we were going with them again I definitely wouldn't be cleaning, and probably wouldn't even declutter or straighten much (although I need to declutter to make room for the baby, so it'll have to happen eventually). So I wouldn't worry about the house being operating-room clean. Maybe talk to them and ask -- we were all nervous and reassured them that we were going right out to buy the crib, etc. and the supervisor said, "Don't worry about all that. All the baby's going to need is a car seat and love. He/she can sleep in a dresser drawer for a few days if necessary." So NOT how CPS does things!

Okay, I just spent the time she would have been here straightening up and sweeping the floor. I'm actually okay with the way it looks (except the mess in the office/baby's room) but I just wondered if I'm being too casual about it. If DS naps today, I'll keep on decluttering what I can, and hopefully will find time this week to dust and mop and really get the house clean and HOPEFULLY keep it that way for a day or two. ;-)
I keep my house exactly how we live in it, it's not by any means CLEAN but its comfy and safe..
I clean just like I would if we were having one of the children's birthday parties and the family and friends were on their way over. I sweep, mop and do dishes. Laundry is relatively caught up but I do not go around with a tooth brush and get corners. I can honestly state that with 8 children in the home the SW'ers would know that I am up to something if they came in and saw a spotless house. I myself have a very strong desire to scrub scrub scrub. Even for family. It is something that I have to learn to be imperfect about. We have just opened up our homestudy again so we will see if I can hold it together or if I am going to do what I always do when stressed...clean! I hope they get to your study soon!!! Good luck!
LOL I asked our licensing agent how clean she wanted the house. Au natural, good friend coming over, company coming or sterilized as if for surgery. She said good friend. As long as there is no animal feces and she can sit without us having to move piles she's fine with it. OH and no moldy food in the sink/counters. So I'm going to vacuum and do a general pick up. It might differ from agent to agent but she's the only one in this area Smile When in doubt ask them. I haven't had any trouble asking social workers or our licensing agent questions. The nicest part is they are so nice and treat me like all my questions matter and don't look at me like I'm being silly like my husband has started doing.
I have animals, so I cleaned like a mad woman. But whenever someone is coming over, I deep clean. I hate thinking that someone can smell a cat in my house and people always tell me they can't believe I have pets. That gives me more energy for the next time someone comes over. Plus I have the glade plug in oils in certain places just to cover all bases. Smile
For our adoption home study I cleaned like a fiend for all four visits, and I am normally very anal about cleanliness. Above and beyond. That SW never got off the couch until the fourth visit...lol. By the time we got around to doing the foster home study, I made sure kitchen was free of debris and dishes. I vacuumed the main floor. Basically I picked up each room and left it at that.

So I was a little shocked to hear how tidy and clean our house was. Made me REALLY think about what our SW sees on a daily basis to make that comment. :eek:
I did my normal weekly cleaning the day or two before. vacuum (which I do daily anyway due to the cat) clean bathrooms and dusted. The kitchen was relatively clean, but there was some mail on the counter and coffee cups in the sink.

I did have a plan that included coffee and tea and muffins and scones for my agency worker. Until DD decided 10 minutes before they came that she HAD to sit at the table and do stickers and markers. So the table cloth was flipped up in her spot and the table covered with her craft stuff. Oh well. I figured if they couldn't deal with kid clutter than I wasn't a good match for their agency.
My first visit was this past Tuesday. I had big plans to "polish" the house. Our son was hurt Monday at school He was in Surgery all that evening. I should have rescheduled the HS but I had to get it over with for my own sanity lol.
I had laundry folded and in baskets from Sunday. A few dirty dishes, mail on the table. Our worker said everything was fine. They like "normal" she said.. She also said she gets disappointed if its "to clean".
I wouldn't worry. Good Luck
navywife said...
LOL I asked our licensing agent how clean she wanted the house. Au natural, good friend coming over, company coming or sterilized as if for surgery. She said good friend. As long as there is no animal feces and she can sit without us having to move piles she's fine with it. OH and no moldy food in the sink/counters. So I'm going to vacuum and do a general pick up. It might differ from agent to agent but she's the only one in this area Smile


That's the perfect way to describe it! First time, I went all out. After that, I did the sweeping and general pick up and that's it.
swd said...
They keep telling us in class that foster parents are held to much higher standards than bios, but that's more in terms of health care, discipline, etc.


I'm friends with 2 sets of foster parents, and when I was getting visits with my kids, I was held to a higher standard. Like if I let junk mail pile up on the computer desk, or had been folding laundry while watching TV and hadn't gotten it all put away, that'd go in the report, but I've seen the same kinds of things at my FP friends' houses. So, day to day, they're pretty relaxed and reasonable- but if they're looking for something to use against you, housekeeping is the most visible thing for easy nitpicking. That shouldn't matter for a home study, but it might come up if/when you're being investigated for abuse.
ann143 said...
She also said she gets disappointed if its "to clean".


LOL...They must HATE coming to my house. I am a neat-nick and can't let my house get messy. I can handle letting toys litter the floor, but mail on the counters, laundry piled up, those are no-nos for me. I grew up with a hoarder and it makes me very uncomfortable to have a mess in my home.

The funny thing is there have been a couple times that things have been a little more messy when a worker has come over, like if I'm sick or when we've gotten a new placement, and they usually ask "is everything OK...do you need anything?" Like they can tell that something's wrong because the house is a little messy!
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