Fees and Salaries


Grant writers may be salaried employees, paid an hourly rate, or paid a flat or project fee. Experienced, highly successful grant writers – those experiencing a 50-75% success rate – will come at a higher rate than those just entering the profession.

Research Associates at www.grantexperts.com conducted a national survey about the salaries of grant professionals. They reported that annual gross salaries were between $35,000 and $44,999. Grant professionals with more than twenty years of experience received higher salaries, between $45,000 and $59,999, while those with one to three years received a lower salary in the $25,000 to $34,999 range.  It should be noted that half the respondents reported duties other than grant writing, such as administration and evaluation.

PayScale.com, at www.payscale.com, estimates the range of salary for a grant writer slightly higher: $33,178 to $52,224, with senior writers making up to $64,900. Organizations can also refer to www.salary.com to determine pay scales.

The hourly rate for grant writing consultants ranges from $15 to $100+ and varies according to an individual’s experience and the complexity of the grant proposal. Consulting fees may range from a low of $25,000 to a high of $150,000+.
Flat rate fees begin at a few thousand dollars up to $12,000-$15,000 and even higher for a federal grant.

Should a grant writer be paid a percentage of the approved grant? Several professional fundraising associations have a policy against charging for fund raising based upon a percentage of the funds received. The Association of Fundraising Professionals (www.afpnet.org) has a policy against accepting any part of funds raised. Likewise, some grant writers feel it is unethical to charge a percentage fee for grant writing, and some foundation grant makers declare it an unacceptable practice.

Whatever the type of payment, it is wise to have a written agreement or contract so that both the grant writer and organization agree to the payment, payment schedule, and scope of work.

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