Homestudy questions...

Hi all!

So DH and I are going to start the process of our foster/adoption journey this October, and while we know that it is an already stressful time we are trying to prepare to make everything a little easier.

One of the things we are really working on is getting our home in order to welcome children and to pass the home study. For instance, we know we need to put up a pool gate, but we aren't sure if there are requirements for how tall it needs to be etc. Also, how many smoke alarms are required? Currently, we only have two since it is an older home and that was all that was required when the house was built. I know it probably varies by state, but any helpful hints would be appreciated.

By the way, I do live in AZ, so if anyone is from here I was curious if there was a checklist or something to go off of?


Re: Homestudy questions...

  • Lacyj67Lacyj67 member
    Hi and good luck moving forward. So I'm in ca and we have a pool. Which we had a company come out and do one of those mesh sides pool fences. It has to be 5 ft tall... No shorter. And no gaps over 4 inches wide. It cost us about $2000 for our pool fence but we have a huge pool. It also has to have a locking gate that opens outward and self closes with like a spring in the gate.i hope that helps.
    And as for smoke alarms I think they want smoke alarms for sure in the room that would be the baby's and kitchen. We also needed a carbon monoxide detector which we got at Costco and a fire extinguisher. They also make you so a mock up map of your home with the emergency exits and where all the alarms and extinguishers are and know where everyone will go in case of emergency. All this sounds overwhelming but just check one thing at a time off your list and it will all get done. We started strapping all the big heavy furniture and getting plug socket covers early on. Good luck!!!
    Me 34 and DH 39 married in aug. 2002
    Did 5 round of clomid 2010 =BFN
     High levels of NK CELLS DX sept.2012 DOR:# 0.02 
    IVF #1 May 2012  ER 4, EF 2, ET 2 =BFN
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    FET #2 Jan 31st  2014 
    Miscarried for a second time again at 5 weeks 5 days
    Currently fostering to adopt an amazing little 1 year old boy..P.J!
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  • Each HS and agency has its own set of requirements. I'd wait until you start the process to see what's required. Even if you have to make fixes after the HS, you should be fine as long as it's documented
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  • spotco2spotco2 member
    edited May 2014
    I agree, every home study is different and so is every social worker and consultant.

    We did not need anything like what
    Lacyj67 was talking about.

    Best thing to do is ask what they are going to be looking for.

    I can assure you that you will need a gate and fence around the pool but honestly surprised that your insurance company doesn't require that anyways. Life safety code says that the fence has to be 4' high minimum with a self latching gate.

    Proud 40 year old, first time daddy!
  • mysticlmysticl member
    I used to do foster home studies and you had to have everything done by my last visit not my first.  If I had to do extra visits to check on something that was no bid deal.  Your agency should give you a list of exactly what is needed.  Each state has it's own rules and some agencies will interpret them differently or go above and beyond.  

    For example the state I worked in required smoke detectors in "sleeping areas".  Some agencies interpreted that as you could have one in the hall outside the bedrooms.  My agency interpreted that as one in any room a foster child may sleep in.  We also required an emergency evacuation plan to be posted and a fire extinguisher.  We only required the carbon monoxide detector if the home had gas.  We also had rules for what counted as a bed.  For example a futon did not count as a bed unless it was one of the bunk bed set ups with the full size futon on the bottom and the twin bed up top.  
  • We live in Wisconsin and were able to google basic homestudy requirements for the state.  That could be a good starting place for you. 


  • fernanefernane member
    Have you done your training classes yet? In our training was where we got all the requirements like that in writing so we could get everything prepared before the home study. From beginning to end, it took us less than 3 months to get licensed and I still found that was plenty of time to get everything in order for the house. If you want to know sooner, I'm sure if you call your agency or CPS, they will send you the list of requirements.
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