Post # 1
My Fiance talked about this the other night, but we’d like to be foster parents for a few years before we start having children of our own. My concern is income. I’m a nurse and my shifts keep getting cut. FI is a contractor. Do they check our income? Just wondering.
Post # 2
Regardless of whether or not they check income, if your income is not steady – can you afford to care for a foster child?
Post # 3
Agreed with morningcoffee… I think it would be best if you talked with some foster agencies, be honest about your situation, and see what they recommend.
Post # 4
From what I’ve seen, yes.
Post # 5
+100 to PPs.
1) Foster parenting is NOT drivers ed for biological children.
2) Why on earth would you even try to take on a child if you’re not financially stable?!
You’re making this all about YOU, not the foster child who needs a family. Definitely not a good frame from which to start.
Post # 6
If you aren’t financially stable, don’t take on foster care. Those kids are not practice for “real” kids. They aren’t fillers until you’re ready for long-term commitment.
They’re often emotionally troubled and need extra care, which comes with extra expenses. The state doesn’t provide nearly enough funds to raise kids well unless you have steady income.
Get pets instead.
Post # 7
I also agree with PPs. Income counts but it’s a secondary issue.
fiona1992: You need to talk with the agencies involved. States vary on the basics. And then within that state framework, additional eligibility issues vary for the kid(s) involved. Thanks for being willing to step in where there is need. Enjoy doing your homework about it and best wishes to you!
eta: And for Bees thinking that OP wants to view fostering as a test drive, I didn’t think that. I know too many foster/adoptive parents who seek to build their blended family with the non-biological kids first and the biological kids second. They know that their applications would be denied based on income/kid ratios so they foster/adopt first. It’s a sound strategy. jmho
Post # 8
They check everything for foster parents. From my research, you will even be interviewed on intimacy between you and your spouse. So, if it’s something seriously important to you, be prepared for a lengthy process.
As for if your financial aspect is agreeable for fostering…you will have to apply or inquire and see what they reply with.
Post # 9
As a foster parent who ended up adopting, my experience was that your income is not as important to the Agency as your committment to parent successfully. I was required to attend an 8 week course on the ins & outs of being a foster parent.
As to “being a foster parent for a few years…”– try explaing that to a foster child who has bonded with you. Sorry kid, time’s up, we’re having our biological children now. That kind of time limit as a foster parent would probably not sit well with an Agency.
Post # 10
fiona1992: I would think they do, I imagine they check everything. You should sign up for those classes and have all your questions answered. My sister went through those.
Post # 11
If you’re holding off on biological kids for a while for whatever reason, wouldn’t those same reasons apply to foster kids? I mean, if you’re not ready for that commitment, want to travel, don’t have the finances, etc…. all those things are still true when you’re talking about foster kids. They’re not short-term rentals.
Post # 12
Yes income is checked to confirm “The family is required to show sufficient income to meet the needs of their family and any additional children placed in the home.” in my state and I would assume any other state. Placing children in a home that cannot afford to feed, cloth, and care for them would not be very smart on the state’s part.
Is there a specific reason you want to foster for “a few years” before having bio children? Fostering is not a hobby and its not an easy task. Its not quite like foster a dog or cat until someone adopts them – these are children who typically have needs far greater than you can imagine. I highly recommend anyone considering fostering spend some time with families that have done it and ask about thier highs and lows.
Post # 13
- Wedding: October 2016 - Waldorf Astoria, Orlando
BeachBee1988: I got the same message you did here.
If you’re hoping for a “test run” set of kids before having your own.. That is very selfish. A lot of foster children are coming from broken homes. Most have trust and emotional issues that need to be addressed. I sincerely hope you reconsider. If you’re not ready for your own kids, you’re not ready for foster kids. Especially if you are not financially stable or emotionally mature. At twenty four years old (based on the 1992 in your username) you are not equipt to deal with the issues most of those children have. Besides, the average age of a foster child is 8.7 years of age…. Which means you’d have been 16 years old when most of the children available were born. It’s just not an ideal situation.
To answer your question directly though… Yes, they check your income. They check your home and your background. They will discuss your home life and your relationship to your spouse.
http://www.childrensrights.org/newsroom/fact-sheets/foster-care/ <- Please don’t add to these statistics. Those children in foster care are looking for their forever home. Not someone who wants to see if they’re suitable parents.
Try for your own kids. If that doesn’t work, adopt.
Post # 14
- Wedding: May 2016 - San Clemente Church, Italy
I’ve heard of starter houses and upgrading rings…..but upgrading children? Just. Wow.
Post # 15
The specific details vary from state to state and within agencies, I think. My mother used to recruit foster families for kids and she did the first home visit to assess their suitability. She looked at background (any run ins with the law? What for? Any major family issues or dramas?), your relationship and it’s stability, your home (you have to have a room with a closing door for each child- no shared rooms and no setting them up in modified rooms), your financial stability, how you conduct yourself during the interviews and during later interactions (were you just performing for the interview?). And then there was a 10 week class potential parents had to take and there was a limit to the number of times people could miss or be late.
I would agree with people saying if you aren’t financially stable now isn’t the best time to look to get a child. Foster kids have already been through a lot and they need to be in an environment that is safe and secure. A home where people are stressing about diminishing work hours and income wouldn’t provide that sense of safety and security which would be incredibly unkind.
And- ultimately you need to speak with the agencies in your area. If this is something you know you want to do, now is a great time to start getting to know the agencies and deciding which one feels like a good fit for you and your Fiance