Affording Adoption: Where to Start
Written by Sheri Molnar on 19 Jul 2016
It doesn’t take too long for families considering growing their families through international adoption to realize that adoption is expensive, and that affording adoption may be a challenge. Although, it seems unreasonable to have high expenses associated with such a loving process, there is no getting around the fact that the expense of international adoption is one of the first hurdles which must be overcome in a family’s adoption journey. Begin with these five steps to stride over this hurdle in your adoption journey.
- Understand what payments are due and when they are due. Carefully read your international adoption agency’s fee sheet, paying special attention to the timing of each payment. How much is due upfront? Is the fee sheet inclusive of all the third party fees including travel expenses?
- Assess your current finances. Review your status to determine how much money you personally have to contribute to your adoption fund. What can you leverage quickly to raise additional funds? Do you have enough items to hold an adoption garage sale? Do you have a boat or car that you could sell?
- Develop a budget. Sit down and identify opportunities to save money in your daily living. Can you skip the Starbucks stop each morning? Eat out one less time a month? Walk to work instead of drive? Identifying monthly savings opportunities will allow you to add to your adoption savings account each month.
- Identify your shortfall. Now that you have read your fee sheet and reviewed your finances, how much more must you raise to fulfill your dream of an international adoption? How much time do you have to raise these additional funds?
- Inventory your strengths to identify your opportunities. Does your employer offer employee adoption program? Are you military and able to take advantage of military benefits? Do you have a penchant for crafts and can sell something? How about a friend who is an event planner, willing to plan a fundraising event? Do you have a compelling story which will look good on a grant application? Follow ourAffording Adoption board on Pinterest for additional ideas.
Each family’s adoption journey is unique and so is the financial strategy they use to complete their journey. The key is to understand your goal and know what options are available to you and your situation.