Eligibility & Criteria

As a funder, REFBC is interested in projects that support the sustainable use of land and that build knowledge and professionalism in the real estate industry.

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Note: Be sure to read this page and the FAQ page before starting a grant application. There are certain kinds of projects and activities we do not fund (e.g. capital costs).

REFBC accepts applications through two application streams: General Grants and Real Estate Industry Grants.

The following eligibility criteria apply to both streams.

The Real Estate Industry Grant application stream is targeted to support real estate related organizations and, therefore, additional eligibility criteria apply.

Grantee Eligibility

REFBC grants can support registered non-profit organizations and Community Contribution Companies (C3s). Examples of non-profit organizations include: charities, NGOs, post-secondary institutions, professional associations, societies, local and regional governments and First Nations. 

Project Criteria

When evaluating grant applications, REFBC is most likely to fund projects that:

  • Target real estate and/or land use professionals and planners, policy makers, decision makers and/or key public audiences.
  • Encourage best practices.
  • Address a current or emerging need.
  • Increase the capacity of an organization, sector or community to improve real estate and/or land use practices.
  • Have clear, achievable objectives and identified deliverables, including well-developed implementation and communication plans.

Elements of a Good Project

REFBC’s grant program is competitive and, unfortunately, the Foundation does not have the financial resources or staff capacity to fund every application that meets our criteria. Over time, we have found that projects that demonstrate the following qualities have a greater chance of success:

  • Leadership and innovation – We give preference to projects that demonstrate leadership in a field, either by presenting an innovative solution and/or by meeting an identified need. Innovation is the application of new or novel approaches to meet land use challenges through more effective processes, techniques, technologies or ideas.
  • Partnership and collaboration – We encourage partnerships and collaboration with other groups and individuals that will be directly involved in planning, communicating or implementing the initiative. We encourage a diverse range of logical partners including non-profit, public and private sector.
  • Sustainability and longevity – We look for initiatives that can be sustained after initial funding is obtained, and which have an ongoing legacy.
  • Scalability and potential to replicate – We assess potential projects by examining how they may be replicated in other communities in BC. We ask how the initiative plans to transfer concepts, approaches and policies to other geographic regions, audiences and user groups.

Budget Guidelines

When allocating grant dollars, REFBC staff and Board members ask that applications for funding meet the following guidelines:

  • Projects must have a reasonable budget.
    • As a rule, REFBC grants can fund up to 50% of the cash portion of a project budget.
    • We expect that other logical partners will be approached for cash and/or in-kind support. The Foundation typically will not act as the sole funder of a project.
  • Budgets are prepared for time-bound projects or initiatives with specific objectives, activities and deliverables identified.
    • Our funding is intended for non-capital costs associated with a project or initiative. These costs might include, but are not limited to: project coordination and management, communications, production of educational content, workshop delivery, consultant fees, community consultation and travel.
    • However, we also recognize that any project or initiative is supported by an organization’s overall operations budget and we will fund a portion of those costs as a percentage of a project’s total costs. For this reason, applicants may choose to include “indirect/admin costs” as an expense item on their budget form, and may allocate up to 15% of the budget in this way.
  • There are a few activities which the Foundation does not generally fund, including capital costs. These activities and costs are detailed in the FAQ section.

Exclusions

The Real Estate Foundation has determined the following types of applications do not fall within its funding mandate and are not eligible for grants. Please check this list to ensure your project does not fall into one of these categories. If in doubt, please contact one of our staff members for clarification.

The Foundation will not entertain applications for:

  • Activities that primarily provide financial benefits for individuals
  • Retirement of debt and/or retroactive funding
  • Directed political lobbying