Setting Your Freelancer Fee for Writing a Grant

Grant writing for freelancers is a terrific source of income. How much to charge for your freelancer services is a question many ask prior to deciding whether or not freelance grant writing is an arena for them.

You’ve built your portfolio and received a client. Your next issue is determining what to charge for your freelance grant writing services. This article outlines considerations when determining your fees for freelance grant writing services.

Professional fundraisers oppose your fee being a percentage of the grant amount. They oppose providing your fee in this form for several reasons;

•             Funders discourage this type of fee; they are funding the program not the grant writer
•             Its no more difficult to write a grant for $2000 than for $20,000

Your fee should be a fixed rate per hour for each grant proposal. Your portfolio should include previous grants written, whether for pay or free of charge. Previous portfolio projects should help you in determining how long or how much time is spent on writing grants for clients that may be similar to your current client’s grant.

Take into account the number of hours you will spend doing the entire project. Do not include any time you spend personally researching grant writing as a whole. Include researching the actual funder of the grant and the information the nonprofit has for documentation surrounding the proposal. Have previous proposals been made to this funder by the client? Will I need to do interviews with any of the program staff, such as the director? These are hourly fees that should be included.

After you determine how many hours writing the grant proposal will take, include fees for incidentals. Are there several deadlines to meet with the client? How soon is the proposal due? What if you have to do several rewrites at the client’s request? Do I have to rush to take care of everything? Add several more hours just in case you underestimated the total time it will take to complete your grant proposal. Multiply what you charge per hour by the hours estimated. This is the fee to charge the client for the grant writing.  The typical charge per hour for grant writing can range from $30 to $100, depending upon your experience.

This article is only scratching the surface of fees and income for grant writing. However, it can provide you with a rough estimate of the income generated from freelance grant writing.