Establishing a Charitable Foundation

Making the decision to establish or participate in a charitable foundation can be tough, especially in light of the many financial variables affecting associations in today's economic times. The resources presented below can help facilitate this decision-making process. You will find information pertaining to tax and legal issues, fundraising, as well as general tips on how to start a non-profit. You'll also discover a wide assortment of useful web sites as well as many valuable resources available from NAR.

What Is a Donor Bill of Rights?

A Donor Bill of Rights is a set of standards created by a group of professional fundraising societies for nonprofits to generate confidence between donors and donees. Board members of nonprofits should embrace these fundraising standards and also make certain that the development staff of their organization is familiar with a Donor Bill of Rights.

Legal Pros and Cons of Establishing a Charitable Organization

Now that every association is required to conduct community outreach under the Core Standards program, many are establishing separate charitable organizations to better manage their efforts.

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A Donor Bill of Rights helps leaders understand the donor expectations while bolstering donor confidence. It also outlines the donor's right to receive proper recognition, gain access to the organization's financial statements, obtain information on how funds are being distributed, and stay anonymous if desired.

A full text is available at Donor Bill of Rights.

Source: Association of Fundraising Professionals

Starting Out

Starting a Nonprofit Organization: One-stop Answer Page (The Balance, 2018)

How Do I Start a Non-Profit? (Grantspace, 2018)

How to Start a Non-Profit (National Council of Non-Profits, 2018)

6 Steps to Start a Non-Profit the Right Way and Get Your First Paying Members (Wild Apricot Blog, May 24, 2017)

Legal Pros & Cons of Establishing a Charitable Foundation (National Association of REALTORS®, Oct. 24, 2016)

4 Tips to Successfully Partner with a Non-Profit (REALTOR® Magazine, August 2015)

Association Charity Events, Fundraisers and Community Involvement (National Association of REALTORS®, Feb. 19, 2015)

Tax & Legal Issues

IRS: Tax Information for Charities and Other Non-profits (Internal Revenue Service, 2018)

Common Issues in Fundraising Events (Houston Business Journal, May 11, 2018)

Nonprofits may Encounter Tax Consequences (Buffalo Law Journal, Dec. 21, 2018)


4 Simple Steps to Raising All the Money Your Non-Profit Needs (Foundation Group Blog, Apr. 11, 2017)

15 Techniques Used by Top Nonprofits to Boost Donor Acquisition and Online Fundraising Results (NPEngage, Feb. 23, 2017)

Need More Non-Dues Revenue? (REALTOR® AE Magazine, Winter 2017)

Selling Sponsorships (REALTOR® AE Magazine, Winter 2017)

Useful Websites

Association of Fundraising Professionals

Council on Foundations

The Foundation Center

The Internal Revenue Service

National Philanthropic Trust

The inclusion of links on this page does not imply endorsement by the National Association of REALTORS®. NAR makes no representations about whether the content of any external sites which may be linked in this page complies with state or federal laws or regulations or with applicable NAR policies. These links are provided for your convenience only and you rely on them at your own risk.