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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    2

    Question Grant Writers Fees

    Need a little guidance from some experienced peer reviewers or funded departments utilizing the services of a professional grant writer, if possible.

    I am a grant writer who normally writes grants based on a percentage and contingent on the grant getting funded. I have always found that I work better for the client when I don't get paid if they don't get the money. With the fire grants, I must get paid a set fee, regardless of funding.

    Can some of you give me some guidance on what you believe to be a fair hourly rate, and the number of hours you think it will take to complete the 2004 application? Any things for me to consider in quoting a price to a department?

    For information purposes, I mainly work with very small departments in rural areas.

    Thank for any help.

    Rod Hinds


  2. #2
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Kirkwood, MO. 63122
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    Rod:

    I was a peer review panelist in 2003 and reviewed a lot of applications completed by grant writers, paid by the applying department. We saw only the bottom line fee they were charged and do not know what the hourly rate was or how the fee was established. For the most part, fees ran from as little as $250.00 to as high as $5,000.00! In several of my reviewer comments, I wrote that the grant writer did such a dis-service to the applicant that they should demand their money back. They were poorly worded, spoke with little knowledge and had no real desire to express the interest of the department.

    I have made my point quite clear here before, the cost for a grant writer is too expensive if they do not provide a service for the applicant. Too many times the grant writer had no idea of the fire service and the applying departments let the application go through. I saw applications that went into way too much detail on how a thermal-imaging camera works and said little on why the department needed one.

    Remember, you are going to be submitting the application to a wide group of experience and skill levels, all from the fire service. Make sure you can write in their vernacular and make it seem that someone in the know wrote it. You are not sending these to a group of untrained federal bureaucrats. Spend some time with the departments and interview their needs. You can also do a great service to your clients by trying to steer them in the right direct, if you see that their application is too fragmented, disjointed or lacking a specific focus.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2

    Default

    I certainly appreciate your comments. I agree, some grant writers should be ashamed of themselves for charging what they do for a grant application. This brings up a good point. Like I said in my previous narrative, usually I write grants on a contingency basis because it makes me work harder, get more involved in the project, and take nothing for granted.
    Why do these grants not operate on the same scenario, as do most of the Federal grants I write? It would seem to negate the overcharging to already strapped departments hoping pinning all of their hopes on a very competitive grant process.
    Again, thanks for your comments.

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Kirkwood, MO. 63122
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    Default

    Not real sure why they donít allow a contingency payment in this grant application. However, you could be talking about some real money and it might not represent the actual amount of work you put into the application. If you allowed a contingency I think there would have to be limits in either a percentage or dollar amount. If you limited it to say 10% on a $160,000.00 truck that would equal a $16,000.00 payment to the grant writer? I donít think they could put $16,000.00 into the application process.

    Grant writer applications are neither looked down upon or held to a higher standard. In a lot of cases the applicant was scored lower because of what they paid the grant writer for such a poor application. Therefore, the cost benefit of the application was lower. Not by a lot I admit, but I can say that I scored it different.

    Getting back to your original question. I think the local market is going to tell you how much they can pay per hour.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    1

    Post Percentage rate:

    Dear Rod,

    I am interested in your work on grants for a contingency fee. I will be doing some work for a non profit and the only way they can pay me is on a contingency. What do you think is a fair rate? Is there a standard contingency rate?

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