Domestic infant adoption can be really expensive. I wrote about the variability in the adoption costs awhile back in detail, but generally adoption costs vary by state and by the type of professionals that are involved in your adoption (agency, attorneys, etc.). Adoptive Families conducts a survey of average adoption costs every two years, and found that in 2016-17, the average total adoption cost for an Agency Adoption was $43,239, and the average total cost for an attorney adoption was $37,829. This includes home study, advisor/consultant and post placement costs, but obviously greatly exceeds the Adoption Tax Credit numbers for 2020 of $14,300 (and it phases out for families with modified adjusted gross income of $214,520).

There are many ways to fund your adoption. A great book to help you with adoption funding is You Can Adopt Without Debt by Julie Gumm. You can also hire professionals to help you fund your adoption through creative budgeting, loans, or adoption grants. The one we typically recommend and have available for our Purl families is The Adoption Finance Coach, which is typically only available through adoption professionals. However, there are other advisors that can also help with that even if the professionals you choose are not affiliated with The Adoption Finance Coach, including Family Money Coaching. You can also go to and get a list of adoption grants and loans that you might be eligible for. Grant writing and applications can be time consuming, but many people are able to fund most of their adoption costs through grants, loans and other creative fundraising. There are a variety of secular and religious loans with low interest rates available for your adoption.

I’m admittedly biased, but my favorite adoption grant is Gift of Adoption Fund. I am the President of the AZ chapter of Gift of Adoption, but the National office is based in Illinois and they offer grants to families all across the country. Families are more likely to receive a grant from GOA for a domestic adoption if there is drug or alcohol exposure in utero or other circumstances that would have caused the child to end up in the state foster care system absent the adoption. There is no application deadline, grant applications are reviewed monthly, and you can apply once you are home study approved. However, you will need to update your application once you match, and then, if awarded a grant, it will be paid directly to the adoption professional for the final costs of the adoption (typically for finalization or post placement visits).

I’ve also had Purl families have success with creative adoption fundraising, including the following, which can also be used for Adoption Outreach to friends, family and acquaintances:

  • Community Garage Sales

  • T-Shirt Fundraisers through Bonfie, Custom Ink or even a local tshirt printer

  • Online Auction services like 32Auctions or even on Instagram

  • AdoptTogether or GoFundMe

  • Puzzle Piece Fundraisers

  • Spaghetti Dinners

  • MLM Parties (where the host donates a portion to the adoption)

For more ideas, check out! Purl families get even more information about adoption funding, so sign up for one of our Advisement Packages for more assistance on funding your adoption, access to less expensive adoption professionals, and ideas on ways to adopt privately without the help of a placing agency or attorney. Contact Us to learn more!

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