When I speak to people about adopting, the number one reason that people tell me they cannot do it is due to the high cost of fees. It is daunting to look at the list of fees due to an agency, plus the fees you will pay for things outside of what an agency does for you, plus travel if you are not adopting locally, and add it all up. If you’re a typical middle class family, it’s enough to make you fall over from shock and back away slowly in terror. We completed our first adoption sitting solidly in the lower middle class bracket, and I’m here to tell you that it’s possible to pay the fees, even if you don’t have a lot of wiggle room in your budget. In our experience, it hasn’t been easy, and we have had to get creative, but it’s been both possible and worth it. I look at these fees as our first sacrifices for our children; it’s only the beginning of what we are willing to do for them.
While some adoptive families can easily pay all the costs up front, most of us are not in that position. What follows is a list of options for filling the gap between what you can pay up front and what you need to come up with.