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Finance help should we stop?

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We are currently going through stage 1 and are worrying about our finances they are not the best and our sw has said that this could cause a concern so wondering should we continue and see what happends although we do think we will get turned down going with our gut and run the risk of going to another agency and having to go through all the process again telling them about our poor finances or we stop it ourselves get sorted with our finances get some savings behind us and then start a fresh with a clean slate or would we still have to tell them that we started but decided to stop we just think if we get turned down it looks worse than us stopping cause we know our finances are rubbish help and advice needed. Thank you.


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Has your worker said what may cause concern over them?


I think maybe stop and sort out your finances. Set up plans to repay or reduce debt and work out a savings plan. We saved like crazy and consolidated a couple of loans, changed providers for utilities and saved some money there. How will you support yourselves when a child is places? Will you have enough saved for a year off? What are your plans if one of you cannot return to work? Children are not cheap so, I would say deal with it now.


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Thank you for your reply we live month to month have no savings although our spare net income is good and we can support a child from nursery age although we haven't looked into 1 of us not returning to work since we stopped our fertility treatment a few years ago we have been enjoying life never missed a payment on any bills or credit cards but have not been responsible spenders so feel this will go against us.


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From what you have said, I would take a good look at your finances and work out how to start saving a little each month and clearing any debts. You sound as though you've started the process and know what you are spending. If your spare net income is good, then it should be fairly easy as its a case of choosing to go without some things and learning to live on less. Think about what stuff is nice to have and what is really necessary.


Realistically, adoption can be expensive and many adopters do have to stop work/work less because of the needs of their child/ren so do need a buffer to weather the storms. I suspect a year of new habits would be plenty to show a more positive financial position from which to proceed.


Good luck


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If you have a decent expendible surplus each month I'd focus on slashing your debts before you start saving. Look at the debt with the highest interest and get rid of that first, usually that would be any store or credit card. Savings rates are dire, there's no point saving if you are paying variable interest rates on debts.

Loans are more tricky cos there is rarely a reduction in interest for paying off early.

It is a reality for many adopters that they need to reduce work commitments post adoption to accomodate their children's needs so cutting your outgoings now is worth doing.

Try reviewing all your costs - utilities, insurances etc. Look for better deals. Review your shopping habits and begin to make some changes to down-level your food purchases and see what a difference that makes.

Look objectively at your lifestyle and think - OK we splurged post fertility treatment and that was good for us, now we need to start the next phase and begin to reign in that lifestyle and set ourselves a couple of treats each month and shift the focus to our new goal. Use spare cash each month to pay off a debt.

Re stepping off or getting turned down - step off voluntarily, show them you have identified an area for work and are set upon it. I suspect if you can really work at those financial issues you could be ready to restart within the year and be saving as you go through the process.

Good luck


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I think that from the number of threads on here with stage one prospects worried over their finances this is an area of anxiety affecting many but rarely turns out to be insurmountable

I don’t think you were in any different a position to ourselves before having children, both working with a good income, living a child free lifestyle and with little else to spend money on.

Things will change when you have children and that doesn’t vary by how you have them. I think a lot of the financial issues SWs talk about are based around having unmanageable levels of debt, using payday loans and having no visible source of income. However some social workers gold plate the guidelines and add their own opinions, which are often not valid at the point of approval.

The truth is you do not need to have significant savings or high income at the point of adoption. You don’t even have to be debt free, in our case we had a seven figure sum invested in a business with a five year break even plan.

The key is having a good financial plan which allows you to show the SW that even if you have only one income for a while, the world won’t fall apart for you. Let’s face it, many families cope with redundancy and gaps in employment and cut the cloth to fit.

Adopting is often seen as a middle class passtime because of the way it is presented and this sort of financial requirement does not help to dispel that. Money does not make children happy, especially children who come from deprived backgrounds.

My advice would be don’t drop out keep going and work on how you present yourself and your finances with a positive light.


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I think there's a difference between 'good planning' debt (investment in a start up business, an affordable mortgage, the sort of debt that can put you in a better financial position in the long run), and debt that is unplanned, or supporting a lifestyle that you're only just managing.


As Ford P says, it's whether you've got a sensible financial plan that covers the costs of a child, one of you taking a year off at placement, and being able to cope in the case of something unexpected. Whether you're adopting or not, having a few months living expenses reasonably available gives you time to adjust and make a plan if you have a crisis (in my case, losing my job unexpectedly - in the end we scraped through without any major changes, but it was very stressful and that did affect DD as well as me - if for example I had been unable to meet mortgage payments straight away it would have been far, far worse).


So I would say whether you take a break or not depends on how quickly you can pay off any debt that isn't an 'investment' of some sort, and begin to put a little aside regularly. If you can't realistically resolve the issues in the timescale of assessment and possible placement it would probably be best to wait. If it's a matter of reining in some discretionary spending for a few months perhaps not.


But once you've worked out your plan, show it to the SW and see what they think. The reality is the hurdles are the height the SW and agency set them, which will vary. Everyone's attitude to financial risk is different, so will see the situation slightly differently.


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Thank you everyone for your comments we have taken it all on and we are sticking with it we have talked to our sw and she has said that we are still in a strong postion and our debt is only small and will have it paid off in full over the next few months. Thank you for your support its so stressful.


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