How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

How To Start A NonProfit – Step By Step

People who start a nonprofit organization are inspired by a vision to build a legacy for future generations and leave a mark. 

Behind anyone’s vision to start a nonprofit organization is a concrete intent and purpose. 

This purpose expresses the organization in terms of who it’s going to benefit, how, and its basic service. 

Your checklist for starting one includes critical thinking, patience, hard work, and tenacity. We wrote this step-by-step approach to help you build a successful nonprofit organization. 

Well, let’s get started. 

START A NONPROFIT

What is a Nonprofit Organization

An organization qualifies to be a nonprofit when its business /organization model’s primary goal is not making a profit. In the United States, nonprofits serve the public interest and therefore are exempted from tax by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). 

A nonprofit organization’s designation in the US falls under the legal section 501(c)(3).

This section explains there will be 27 different types of nonprofit organizations. An organization qualifies to be nonprofit and operate within the 501 (c) (3) legal section if it is: 

  1. Educational
  2. Scientific
  3. Religious
  4. Literary
  5. Charity
  6. If it promotes amateur sporting 
  7. Preventing animal and child abuse
  8. If it’s concerned with public safety

Each of these types of nonprofit organizations has its own set of principles for: 

  • Lobbying
  • Electioneering
  • Eligibility
  • Tax-deductible contributions. 

You will also come across different types of nonprofit organizations that do not fall under section 501 (c) (3). Such organizations include advocacy groups, employee benefit funds, recreational clubs etc. If you want to start a 501c3 nonprofit, check our article about how to start a 501c3 nonpofit.

However, the most common nonprofit organizations you will come across include public charities, social advocacy groups, children’s foundations, and trade organizations.

The estimated number of registered public charities in the United States is over 1 million. Therefore, it means public charities are the largest type of nonprofit organization.

Examples of public charities include art groups, amateur sports, low-income housing foundations, museums, animal welfare, and food banks. 

Now let’s dig deeper into the step-by-step process of starting a nonprofit organization. 

The Importance of a Nonprofit Organization

Asking yourself why you need to start a nonprofit organization will set you up for success mainly because you have intent. 

A goal helps in customizing milestones, which you endeavor to accomplish as you go up the ladder. There are plenty of nonprofit organizations in the world. In reality, you are going to find plenty of others that have a similar purpose as yours.

While this shouldn’t be an issue – since you are all working towards the common good – it’s essential you position your organization towards a unique and unsolved problem.

A unique proposition is important to businesses while seeking investors and significant to an organization that’s seeking funding. 

Simply it means if you’re copying an organizational model that isn’t different and unique – you will find it hard to get funding. 

The most successful nonprofit organizations are the ones started by innovators and entrepreneurs who’ve already left the corporate world.

For example, Bill Gates left Microsoft to form the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which focuses on improving the world’s health system.

Then there’s Mark Zuckerberg’s – Chan Zuckerberg Foundation – which focuses on implementing technology solutions to help solve the world’s toughest problems. 

In evaluating why you need a nonprofit organization, evaluate your passions and problems that ache the world.

According to surveys across growing nonprofit organizations in the United States, at least one-third of NFPs are in financial distress, while less than 50% of them survive the first years. 

Take into account the following steps while informing your need to build a nonprofit organization. 

  • Step 1: What is your intended demographic? What communities does your purpose serve? It’s not a must you go into the details of this at the moment. Only ensure you establish the needs of your intended population. Make sure your organization will add value to the community. 
  • Step 2: Today’s world is focused on creating data-driven solutions. Study and derive numerical data on your intended population and establish whether the need has already been met, and you will meet the needs if they are not met. 
  • Step 3: Identify which organizations (either for profit or not for profit) already appeal to the very needs you wish to pursue. 
  • Step 4: Think about your purpose and consider if it’s possible to pursue this purpose by joining an already existing organization. Most nonprofits are looking for consultants, fiscal sponsors, and donor-advised funds.
  • Step 5: With your team, reflect on the following questions to help you a better strategy. 

With whatever you have learned in steps 1 – 4, are you still willing to move forward and start the organization? 

Considering all the advantages, benefits, and limitations of serving your purpose, are you still insistent on starting the nonprofit? 

Are there any other methods of adding value to the better community? And finally, are you adding any value to the community? 

2. Start A Nonprofit: Build a Strong Foundation

All organizations need a strong solid foundation. Build a solid foundation by writing down a clear vision, values, and propositions.

You also need a passionate team. Individuals are driven by a need to pursue the common good. Act on the following while building the foundation of the organization.

  1. Choose a name
  2. Identify and state the problem you want to solve
  3. Describe your solution and elaborate on how you are going to execute the solutions
  4. Define the demographics/population
  5. Determine your vision and values
  6. Write down a straightforward mission statement

Choosing a name for the organization

Select a unique name for your organization. So how do you go about this? Take time to think through the name because you could change anything else about an organization apart from the name. 

Choose a name depending on the main proposition of your organization. A good name influences the message you intend to communicate with your brand for years to come. Here are good ways to brainstorm the name of your nonprofit.

  1. Engage your team, friends, or relatives. 
  2. List down the names that seem memorable and inspiring.
  3. Go through your organization’s mission, vision and establish what your main activities are. Also, remind yourself who your members are and where they are located. 
  4. The name should be easy to remember, write down and pronounce. You could use descriptive words as well, but don’t make them long. Also, avoid industry jargon. 
  5. Take advantage of abbreviations. 

It’s important to come with at least five names. This is because you are required to register your organization’s name with the US Secretary of State.

Therefore, double-check the availability of your names with the office. Also, take into consideration the availability of a web domain with your intended name.

You might be surprised all the names you thought about are registered by other people on the world wide web.

The next step is transcribing your nonprofit’s mission statement. Remember to make it clear and powerful. 

How to Come up with a Working Mission Statement?

A good mission statement helps the organization clarify its intention. It also clarifies the vision of the nonprofit to staff, volunteers, and sponsors.

Make it clear and powerful since, as much as it’s a breakdown of your purpose, it has to send a powerful message to the communities you are impacting. Follow the guidelines below to help you write the mission statement.

  • Clarity is key. Avoid being ambiguous. Make the statement easy to understand. 
  • The statement should be well-crafted and straightforward.
  • Ensure you communicate your purpose to the world and your staff through the mission statement.
  • A well-crafted mission statement will welcome input from everyone. It should be inspiring and actionized. 
  • Avoid technical jargon or expert language. Also, ensure you avoid marketing language while writing the statement. 

With the right mission statement, you will have described the foundation of the organization. Next is creating your plans and setting forth the actions you will take to execute the plan. 

Determine  Your Vision and Organization Goals?

Create a vision for the organization around the goals you intend to accomplish. A vision is a sum of all your organizational goals in one sentence. For example: 

An organization that intends to help cure people with Alzheimer’s diseases will have a vision that goes like this – End Alzheimer’s. 

The following examples will help you come up with your vision: 

  1. Habitat for Humanity: A world where everyone has a decent place to live.
  2. World Vision: Our vision for every child, life in all its fullness. Our prayer for every heart, the will to make it so.
  3. She’s the First: Invest in Girls

To get more inspiration for creating a powerful vision statement, check out this inspiration vision statements for nonprofit organizations.

An organization also needs to have values of its own. These values are the main attributes of the organization that guide it towards achieving its vision. 

Below is an example of organizational values that will help you come up with your own values. 

Example

Sustainability

Innovation

We implement technical solutions to all our problems.

Sustainability

We are committed to creating a holistic and resource friendly approach .

Ethics

We are dedicated to doing good

Goodwill

We believe the less fortunate deserve equal opportunities

START A NONPROFIT

2. Start A Nonprofit: Create a Detailed Business Plan

Communicate your objectives, goals, and execution plan through a detailed business plan. In reality, most nonprofits choose to build their teams before writing down a plan. However, we advise you to choose to create the plan first.

The plan will help you estimate the costs of resource/talent acquisition, income, and the things that matter to the organization. Take enough time building and crafting the business plan.

The plan will have the operational structure of the organization and a strategic approach for executing the plan. Conduct a market and demographic study to establish the needs you are addressing. 

What’s the size of the population you are serving. How likely are you to land on volunteers? Also, consider the financial and emotional position of your intended population. 

Do they have access to the internet, a computer, or a mobile phone? If no, how do you intend to reach them out? Establish all of these questions and build your organization upwards from the ground.

An effective business plan for the nonprofit will set up your organization’s roadmap for the next 5-10 years. 

Remember, through the business plan, you are also setting out the different roles of your team and who will execute what.

Simply, the business plan contains the blueprints of building a successful nonprofit organization. Below are the building blocks of an effective business plan. 

The following section breaks down the problems you are solving and the different ways you are going to solve them. Well, ensure you craft your mission, value, vision, and goals before describing your services.

The following are parts of the executive summary:

  • The Executive Summary – The executive summary is the first section of any business plan. However, this section is usually the last one to draft. The executive summary’s importance is to summarize your key themes, the mission, and the purpose of the organization. 
  • Products, Programs, and Services – write down an in-depth description of your products/services. State who are the beneficiaries. Explain how your organization will be a vehicle for positive change. 
  • Marketing Plan – From observations in your market study, point out trends in the market. Establish how your organization will communicate its purpose to the world? 
  • Operational Plan – Define the operational objectives of the organization. Define how a day in the life of your organization looks like. Establish role plays and the contribution of each team member. Also, state your location in this section. 
  • Impact Plan – What change do you hope to impart? What are your objectives, and how will you achieve each of them? Against what are you going to measure growth? Define your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in this section. 
  • Financial Plan – Define your financial status. In this section, include all your balance sheets, cash flow statements, and income statements. Write and analyze your budget for the organization. Also, remember to identify key revenue streams, as well as the short and long-term costs of running the nonprofit. 
How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

4. Start A Nonprofit: Build a Motivated Strong Team 

Identify and bring together a team of people who share in your passions to bring impact. Build a leadership structure you can rely on. The team members should be passionate, committed, and motivated to ensure your organization strives. 

Implement the following structure when creating your team. 

Board

Board members shape the daily activities of the organization. They support and make decisions that are important to daily operations, deal with compliance and regulations, designate new hires, and participate in strategic planning.

Put in mind the skills, knowledge, technical know-how, and personality of your ideal candidates. Put at interest the individual characteristics that matter to the organizations. Design the roles each board member will play.

Also, communicate the roles for each position with your ideal candidates. This will ensure they decide whether they are a good fit for the role or not. A board’s role is shaped by whether it’s a working or governing board.

A governing board supports operations by offering consultative advice, while a working board provides hands-on-support to the organization. 

Disclaimer: Board members are usually volunteers. They are therefore not paid to be part of the board. You must declare this in the organization’s by-laws. If a board member is paid, then they have no voting rights. However, a nonprofit founder could be paid if they are taking a staff role such as president or director.

Staff

Include the following roles in your list of hiring while starting the nonprofit organizations. These are the basic staff members: 

  1. Membership manager
  2. Fundraising manager
  3. Communications manager
  4. Events Manager

But you should remember the roles you list are hugely dependent on your operational plan as well as the type of problem you are solving. For example, an event manager might not be important in most organizations.

But what if the organization’s main activity is organizing fundraisers? Staff members are usually on the payroll. Therefore, you must estimate the costs of their salary. Also, take into consideration what benefits you will provide to your staff.

Executing a nonprofit organization plan is tough. You, therefore, need the best team for the job. Clearly describe and outline the key responsibilities of your candidates and their long term position in the organization.

You must hire team members aligned with your mission and are truly passionate to carry your zeal. 

Volunteers

In the longterm, a nonprofit will rely on volunteers to keep its operations running. Take the following guidelines before hiring your first volunteer. 

Amount of time you want your volunteers to input on a weekly/monthly basis?

The number of volunteers you require to sustain the organization’s daily operations.

Should the volunteers have specialized skills?

Will you need to train your volunteers? If yes, what systems are you willing to put up in terms of cost to train them. 

Will the volunteers be remote or in person.

Use the above guidelines to inform how you craft your descriptions. Also, remember to share the mission of your nonprofit organization with potential candidates. 

Disclaimer: get an Employer Identification Number (EIN) and open a bank account before hiring. Visit the Internal Revenues Service (IRS) website to apply and register your organization’s EIN. 

How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

5. Start A Nonprofit: Build Your Identity

Once you have established your propositions, values, mission, and vision, build a brand strategy that communicates your message to the world.

The identity of the brand should also reflect its message internally across all members of the organization. Ensure all members are aligned to the nonprofit’s goals and priorities.

This will ensure they consistently communicate the brand identity of the organization. 

An effective organization branding strategy ensures all factions of the organization are united.

This aligns your stakeholders with the message you are passing across. The brand strategy also increases trust and establishing rapport with your audience. 

Most importantly, an effective brand strategy increases audience engagement and sets the organization up for successful fundraising. 

Branding Is Key

The psychological appeal of an organization’s brand identity goes far beyond nice logo designs and appealing graphics. It’s important to have a clear visual identity, but it’s more important to get into the audience’s minds and bring awareness. 

Take into consideration your demographics and customize each piece of communication according to the needs of the brand. The branding should be simple, powerful, compelling, engaging, relatable, and memorable. 

Disclaimer: Customizing a simple branding guide for your nonprofit organization will help you focus with the main design elements such as logo, typography, colors e.t.c. Ensure the guide aligns with all principals of design and that those elements are present in both your online and offline branding. 

How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

6. Start A Nonprofit: Incorporate your NonProfit Organization According to Legal Regulations

There are several steps you will take when incorporating your organization. These are: 

  1. Name choice
  2. Board appointment
  3. Defining the legal structure
  4. Complete paperwork for legal incorporation
  5. Complete tax exemption applications
  6. Acquire associated licenses. 

To prevent unscrupulous cartels from incorporating profit-driven ventures as nonprofit organizations, section 501 (c) (3) has some limitations in how a nonprofit organization should lobby and engage its audience.

The formalities of incorporating the nonprofit organization will also consider the methodology used to appoint board members. For example, no portion of the organization’s earnings should go to a private shareholder. 

In general, the 501(c)(3) label is applied to charitable bodies, but organizations with this exemption are limited in how much lobbying they can engage in and are prohibited from functioning for the benefit of private interests.

No portion of earnings can be used to benefit a private shareholder.

Appointing a board, which we briefly touched upon in the step above, is one of the most important formalities of incorporation.

Different types of nonprofits

While incorporating nonprofits you will come across several types of nonprofits. These include trusts, corporations, associations e.t.c. Compliance laws will provide specific incorporation guidelines for each type of nonprofit organization.

Also, note different states have different structures of incorporating. Explore all compliance laws and get to know your legal structure. 

The nature of the organization’s structure will influence its tax status. The ax designations provided by the IRS should be strictly adhered to. This will ensure no friction between your organization and the Internal revenue authority. 

IRS requires nonprofit founders to file for tax exemption on the IRS Form 1023 ( the long-form). Besides, the IRS also has another form, the IRS 1023EZ (short form), which is much simpler and time-saving. Double-check which form you qualify for on this website. 

Disclaimer: Research on incorporation requirements and all resources you need before applying for a nonprofit organization permit. 

How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

7. Start A Nonprofit: Secure your Startup Funding 

Identify potential sources of funding for your organization and devise a financing model. This is an important step in your approach, and you need to pay keen attention to all details of the funding process.

Solid financing ensures the organization sustains its operations. Therefore establish a robust funding program to keep moving. 

Grants

The most popular means of getting funding for your nonprofit is applying for grants. Usually, grants are funds awarded to a nonprofit organization that’s working towards a particular purpose.

Granters are usually looking for a distinct purpose to sponsor – the qualifications for getting grants could be based on the following factors: 

  • Demographics 
  • Type of nonprofit
  • Nature of support (Startup capital, operational support)

Note the application for grants is demanding and time-consuming. Usually, entailing submission of barrels of paperwork and completion of forms.

Before starting your grant application, sharpen your grant writing skills and draft winning proposals. 

The following tips will benefit your grant application process: 

  1. Do you meet the minimum requirements of applying for a grant? Evaluate your staff and their skills. With these, determine whether to move on with the process. 
  2. Submit applications only to grants aligned to your mission and values. 
  3. Build from the ground up.
  4. Research available grant opportunities and only choose the most suitable ones. 
  5. Build your network and maintain relationships
  6. Invest time in your grant proposal writing skills. You could also hire a professional ghostwriter to craft a pure proposal on your behalf. 
How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

8. Start A Nonprofit: Begin your First Operations

The tedious part of building your nonprofit organization’s foundation is over. Now it’s time to get the real work done. The following are the most initial operations for your organization.

8.1 Build a solid and extensive network – You need a network of professionals around your organization. Build this from the ground up by attracting new donors, hiring new staff, bringing in volunteers, and increasing the visibility of your impact.

An extensive network will help your organization acquire most of the resources it needs to run its operation. Also, include other nonprofits in your network and join forces to achieve common goals and milestones. 

8.2 Create a website for your organization – Now it’s time to set up your online visibility. The best way to go about this is by building a website.

You will have to update the website consistently and frequently with new blog posts, photos, updates, and articles. You can hire a professional web developer to help build the website.

It’s also possible to build the website yourself through hundreds of codeless tools out there such as Squarespace, Weebly, Wix, and WordPress. The following are important and quite essential pages to have on your nonprofit organization website: 

  • Homepage
  • About page
  • Contact Us
  • Donation Page
  • Join Us
  • Email List
  • Members-only portal (Optional)
  • Blog section for updating your audience with news articles, blogs, and press releases
  • Events catalog
  • Resources page

Note: Build a content marketing plan for the website – After building your website, think about how you will communicate to your audience. How will your message reach them, and how will you spread awareness of your impact? Take into consideration different types of content marketing strategies such as sending email newsletters, social media posts, letters e.t.c

8.3 Customize an effective marketing plan – A marketing strategy will help pass across a clear message about your organization.

While it’s possible and better to build your funnel more organically, a marketing strategy ensures your word is out there and that people have a good perception of your brand. 

8.4 Build your social media – Set up your social presence. This could be on Facebook, Instagram, or Linkedin. Facebook is home to many successful advocacy groups. You might consider it while starting.

Additionally, Linkedin is a good platform for building professional networks and connecting with people who are willing to help your organization.

It’s also important to regularly update your social media followers with green content. Create effective Call to Action (CTA) buttons that will ensure your social media followers take action. 

8.5 Build your Organization Culture

Every organization requires a definite onboarding process for its recruiting teams. Customize onboarding descriptions of the roles you are hiring for.

Craft simple and clear job descriptions, build volunteer application forms, and create onboarding manuals and documents to bring in new staff.

Once you are through with the onboarding process, it’s time to think about your organizational culture.

An organizational culture will impact your team members, help them grow, ensure they remain focused, and above all, establish a long-lasting relationship between the organization and the staff. 

8.6 Create Work Systems and Workflows

Implement technological solutions and productivity tools to simplify the daily operations of the organization.

Such tools could be Content Management Softwares (CMSs) such as Hootsuite, Customer Relations Management (CRM) software such as Salesforce, task managers such as Asana.

The following are important tools you can implement in your organization: 

  1. Email Software – Aweber and Mailchimp
  2. CRM – Salesforce
  3. Communication and tasks – Slack and Asana
  4. Design – Canva
  5. Content Management – WordPress or Hootsuite
  6. Analytics -Google Analytics and Alexa
  7. Donation software – Donorbox

While not all of these tools are compulsory for your organization, it’s worth considering those that apply to your daily operations. 

8.7 Set up office

Non Profit organizations require a physical place to run their operations. Establish a form of physical appearance; it could be a coworking space or an area where your volunteers, team members, and staff can work from.

Register for a P.O Box address to receive mails. Also, make sure your office of choice fits within your budget and one that caters to your needs. 

How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

9. Start A Nonprofit: How Do You Get Donations? 

There are several ways to raise donations. The most common one is placing an online donation button on your website. Take advantage of online fundraising and crowdfunding platforms.

There are several platforms online where people fund projects pursuing an impactful goal. You can simplify your donation collection process using donation tools and software.

This will enable you to manage whatever donations you get and widen your reach for more donations.

The most popular donation software is Donorbox – this is an affordable donation platform that only charges a small operation fee.

Visit the official website of Donorbox and sign up for an account.

The platform doesn’t charge any setup fees. You can sign up using your Stripe account – since this where your donations will be collected. 

During the process of defining how to get donations, also define your funding model. Remember, you could blend several options when looking for sources of funding.

However, each option is dependent on the nature of the nonprofit you are running. Here are different types of nonprofit funding options: 

  1. Grants – Governments, private and public foundations commonly give grants. Research for government grants in the local, state, and federal offices. Grant money is given to organizations to support a given course and is therefore not refunded to the giving party. 
  2. Individual Donations – You can land on individual donors through planned events, peer-to-peer fundraising events, auctions, and more. Individual donors can make one-time or recurring contributions. 
  3. Membership Fees – Set up a membership program within your organization. The program should reward the members who enroll with certain benefits. After setting up the membership program, decide on a subscription payment model and enroll new individuals willing to pay. 
  4. Corporate Sponsorships – There are different corporate sponsorships, and all of them could either be long or short term. Donor -based sponsorship matching are donations given to corporates by individuals to support a given course. The corporate then matches the donations with a common cause and awards the funds to a suitable nonprofit organization. 
  5. Selling goods and services – You can collect funds and fees by selling branded merchandise such as T-shirts, mugs, pens, and selling services such as advocacy theatre tickets, museum admission fees e.t.c.
  6. In-kind donations – You can collect in-kind donations such as food and clothing from willing contributors. For example, your organization’s cause could be helping people struck by calamities by giving them shelter and food. Individuals willing to support the cause are going to donate food or clothes. Find ways to collect such in-kind donations and keep going. 
How To Start A NonProfit - Step By Step

10. Start A Nonprofit: A Nonprofit Organization’s Roadmap for Aiming the Skies

The most essential component for growth in a nonprofit organization is a solid foundation. Setting the foundation alone calls for a lot of work, resources, and time. Pay much attention to how you recruit your teams. Put in place effective systems for growing the organization, experiment and draw out marketing plans, grow your network and go out there and make an impact. You will notice the need to recruit new staff and create new positions – there will also come the need to recruit more volunteers and design more membership programs. A strategic plan since the early days of the organization will drive all these changes in the future. 

Aligning your organization with regulations is also important. Make sure you’ve strictly adhered to all compliance requirements. You can ensure compliance by double checking each of the following: 

  • Upholding bylaws
  • Visit the IRS website and file Form 990
  • Regulating board meetings
  • Acquire and keep all associated licenses. Remember to renew these licenses where applicable. 
  • Ensure data is secure and private. These data could be the organization’s financial records, employee, donor, and volunteer data. 

Also, identify and research global regulatory requirements for nonprofit organizations. Different compliance bodies are dealing with such organizations, and it’s important to uphold their values and requirements. For example, the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance is a compliance body that governs all organizations processing payments through debit/credit cards. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act(HIPAA) compliance ensures organizations maintain individuals’ personal health records. 

There are several best practices to consider when running a nonprofit organization. These practices ensure you will always be on the right side of the law and also run things smoothly. 

  1. Comply with safety standards. Where your organization deals with children, ensure the people handling the children are not of suspicious behavior—double check your staff’s criminal records. 
  2. You might be putting up a lot of content ( both written and media), and it’s important to comply with copyright laws. Ensure all music, videos and media are original. Consider acquiring copyrights from media owners if you consider using content that isn’t originally yours. 
  3. Careful plan for succession to avoid conflicts of interests. Put much thought into your leadership team and ensure everyone plays their part in the organization’s growth. 
  4. Put in place effective financial management systems. Ensure all funds are well utilized and do not tolerate all manners of funds embezzlement. 
  5. Uphold all legal responsibilities. Set a legal framework, all required documentation, and guide all members of the nonprofit organization. 

Above, thereof, is the methodological approach for creating an effective nonprofit organization. You have already laid the foundation and written down a strategic plan for the next five years. Remember, you might not be able to achieve all your goals overnight. Therefore, it’s important to set up milestones and create several Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). These will help maintain focus and remain motivated to pursue the bigger picture. 

FAQ – Starting a Nonprofit Organization 

1.What is the Cost of Starting a Nonprofit Organization? 

Budget anywhere between $750 – $2000. Below is a breakdown of those costs: 

  • Fees for incorporating a nonprofit organization which is, however, dependent on the state. 
  • Filing fees for forms 1023EZ – $275
  • Website development costs, which entails domain and hosting fees – $10 – $100 for registering a domain and $15 – $20 for hosting per month. 
  • Office space rent
  • Insurance is approximately $500 annually
  • Hiring costs

2.Will I get Paid after Starting a Nonprofit Organization? 

Always budget salaries as part of your organization’s operating costs. You will raise funding through grants, fundraisers, and donations. The organization can also earn revenue through businesses such as selling branded items, holding auctions, making investments and renting out real estate property. 

3.How Long will it take to Build a Nonprofit Organization?

It will take a few weeks before getting approval of your Article of Incorporation. However, you are ready to get started once you acquire the approval. However, approval is followed by applying for recognition by the IRS as an organization that upholds section 501 (c) (3). The average time it takes to process Form 1023 is anywhere between 3 – 6 months. Processing 1023EZ forms take anywhere between 2 – 3 weeks. 

4. Is it possible to be an LLC and NonProfit Organization?

Limited Liability Company (LCC) can be nonprofit if they meet the requirements set out by the Internal Revenues Service (IRS). However, the LLC should be owned by a single tax-exempt nonprofit entity.

5.Are there any Differences between Nonprofits and Foundations?

The difference between nonprofits and foundations lies in their financing model. Nonprofits are funded by grants, fundraisers, and revenue. While foundations are funded through family or corporate sponsored kits. When a nonprofit makes extra money, it reinvests this on the operation of the nonprofit. While a foundation, the founders can take back their money when the foundation makes profits. 

6.Is Starting a Nonprofit Difficult? 

The process of laying down the foundation of a nonprofit organization is pretty demanding. You will put in amounts of resources, finances, and time to get the foundation right. Nonetheless, the process is not as hard and only requires keen attention to detail. There are few restrictions to entry as compared to starting other ventures.

7. Does a Nonprofit Pay Taxes?

Usually, section 501 (C) (3) exempts Nonprofit organizations from paying federal taxes. But you will find instances where they need to pay taxes. The organization pays tax if it’s making money through activities that do not relate to its main objectives. However, the organization pays taxes for its employees and things such as Social Security, unemployment taxes, insurance cover, and Medicare.

The Bottomline

You have the entire blueprint for starting a nonprofit organization. What’s next? 

Execution, of course. As you embark on your journey to change the world, remember you might encounter roadblocks. It’s important to remain focused, passionate and endeavor to bring as much change and impact to the world. Stay ahead of the road with careful planning, financial management skills, and keeping your team motivated. There is nothing so emotionally rewarding as starting a nonprofit organization, sharing the pride that you have saved a life, bringing water to a community, and advocating for human rights. You will always feel uplifted. 

And remember, YES, YOU CAN.

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