The home should be clean, adequately furnished, in good repair, free from health and fire hazards and comply with local fire ordinances. A foster home must be equipped with a smoke detector on each level, a fire extinguisher, a working telephone and a first aid kit. All firearms, ammunition, medication, and hazardous chemicals (cleaning supplies) must be kept locked in storage. Children in foster care may share a bedroom with another child of the same sex and compatible age; however, a separate bed must be provided for each child. An individual’s room must have no less than 40 square feet (8′ x 5′). If children share a bedroom, they must each have 80 square feet (10′ x 8′). Crossroads Youth Services will send you a complete list of requirements after your BCI application has been submitted (Step 1).

Home Inspection

(1) All indoor and outdoor areas of the home shall be maintained to ensure a safe physical environment.

(2) The home shall be free from health and fire hazards.

(3) The home shall have a working smoke detector and a working carbon monoxide detector on each separated level.

(4) The home shall have at least one approved, fully charged fire extinguisher readily accessible to the main living area. An approved fire extinguisher shall be a minimum of 2A:10BC five point, rated multi-purpose, dry chemical fire extinguisher.

(5) Each bathroom shall have a lock sufficient to preserve the privacy of the occupant.

(6) The home shall have sufficient bedroom space to provide for the following:

(a) a bedroom shall not be shared by children who are over the age of two and of the opposite sex;

(b) a foster parent's bedroom may only be shared with foster children who are two years of age or younger;

(c) a foster parent's bedroom shall not be considered in calculating the allowable bedroom space for foster children;

(d) a foster child shall not share a bedroom with other adults in the home;

(e) each foster child has his or her own solidly constructed, non-portable bed adequate to the child's size;

(f) a minimum of 40 square feet per child, excluding adjoining bathrooms and storage space;

(g) no more than four children are housed in a single bedroom that houses at least one foster child;

(h) bedrooms used for foster children shall be comparable to other similarly utilized bedrooms in the home, including but not limited to access, location, space, finishings, and furnishings; and

(i) bedrooms used by foster children shall have a source of natural light and shall be equipped with a screened window that opens and provides egress to the outdoors.

(7) Closet or dresser space shall be provided within the bedroom for the foster child's personal possessions and for a reasonable degree of privacy.

(8) The home shall have space for recreational activities.

(9) Foster parents shall offer nutritious, balanced meals that meet each foster child's individual needs.

(10) The home shall be maintained at temperatures between 65-82 degrees Fahrenheit.

(11) The home shall have a working refrigerator, cooking appliances, and functional indoor plumbing.

(12) Hazards on the property shall be abated. These areas include but are not limited to fall hazards of 3 feet or greater (steep grades, cliffs, open pits, window wells, stairwells, elevated porches, retaining walls, etc), drowning hazards (swimming pools, hot tubs, water features, ponds or streams, etc), burn hazards (fireplaces, candles, radiators, water, etc), unstable heavy items (televisions, bookshelves, etc), high voltage boosters, or dangerous traffic conditions. These hazards shall be mitigated through the use of protective hardware, fences, banisters, railings, grates, natural barriers, or other licensor approved methods.

(13) The home and its contents shall be maintained in a clean and safe condition. Food, clothing, supplies, furniture, and equipment shall be of sufficient quantity, variety, and quality to meet the foster child(ren)'s needs.

(14) Exits: There shall be at least two exits on each accessible floor of the home. Each exit shall be accessible and adequately sized for emergency personnel. Multiple-level homes shall have a functional, automatic fire suppression system or an escape ladder, stairway, or other exterior egress to ground level accessible from each of the upper levels.

(15) Foster parents shall have and use child safety devices appropriate to the needs of the foster child, including but not limited to safety gates and electrical outlet covers.

(16) Home address is clearly visible and location is accessible.