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How much does a grant writer cost?

Thumbtack Editors
Answered

Hiring a grant writer can give you a competitive edge when applying for financial grants for your business or nonprofit organization, or as an individual. The cost to hire a grant writer can vary depending on their academic background, areas of expertise, previous grant writing success and years of experience. According to the Grant Professionals Association, grant writers should be paid hourly or by flat fee. It is unethical for a grant writer to accept a commission or percentage compensation of grant monies received. They can, however, be awarded bonuses in line with the hiring company’s prevailing practices. Here are some examples of average grant writing fees:

  • Hourly rate for grant writers with less experience or fewer grants awarded: $25-$35 per hour.
  • Hourly rate for grant writers with some degree of success: $35-$75 per hour.
  • Hourly rate for grant writers with proven success winning large grants: $75-$150 or more per hour.
  • For a smaller grant, the writer may charge a flat fee of $200-$500 for preparation and submission.  

Pricing may also vary based on the complexity of the grant application. A federal grant that requires pages of research, budgets and a business plan may take more than 30 hours to prepare. For a high-level grant writer who charges $100 per hour, this means $3,000 or more in grant writing fees.

Most grant writers will provide you with a total cost estimate before agreeing to the work. You may be required to pay a deposit up front, or the grant writer may work from a retainer. Often, seasoned grant writers pay for themselves in the long run by writing successful grants.

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