Smart Growth Program & GrantA
Apply for a Smart Growth grant to host an event or online activity that helps position your association as a leader in your community while engaging members by hosting an online or virtual event addressing community development challenges and opportunities as a result of COVID-19.
Grant Extension Process
State and local associations receiving approval for Smart Growth grants must use the award within one year or be forfeited back to NAR. If your association is participating in an activity supported by a grant that has been rescheduled due to COVID-19 that impacts your ability to meet the one-year deadline, please contact Christine Windle at 202-383-1135 for an extension. Extended Community Outreach grants activity must be completed by October 31, 2020.
Smart Growth Action Grants support state and local REALTOR® Association’s activities in a wide range of land-use and transportation-related activities with the primary goal of affecting public policies that support development that meets one or more of the 10 Smart Growth Principles. The goal of the program is to position REALTORS® as leaders in planning and designing a community’s future while enhancing REALTOR® relationships with local elected officials.
Review the Frequently Asked Questions for information on criteria and funding disbursement before submitting the application.
Grant funds must be used within one year of the award or be forfeited back to NAR. Grant recipients must submit an evaluation form upon the completion of the activity for which funds were awarded. A Reimbursement Request Form is required for funding disbursement.
Expected Financial Participation by Applicant: Minimum 10% of requested grant amount.
Smart growth is an approach to development that encourages a mix of building types and uses, diverse housing and transportation options, development within existing neighborhoods, and community engagement. Based on the experience of communities around the nation that have used smart growth approaches to create and maintain great neighborhoods, the Smart Growth Network developed a set of ten basic principles:
- Mix land uses
- Take advantage of compact building design
- Create a range of housing opportunities and choices
- Create walkable neighborhoods
- Foster distinctive, attractive communities with a strong sense of place
- Preserve open space, farmland, natural beauty, and critical environmental areas
- Strengthen and direct development towards existing communities
- Provide a variety of transportation choices
- Make development decisions predictable, fair, and cost effective
- Encourage community and stakeholder collaboration in development decisions
Smart Growth Resources: How to Use a Smart Growth Grant
- Main Street® Downtown Assessment How-To Guide: conduct a strategy to revitalize or strengthen a downtown or commercial district using the Main Street Approach.
- Better Block Guide: organize a Better Block which is a one to two-day event to implement a community’s vision to revitalize a downtown.
- Walkable Community Resources: plan a community input session to learn about walkable communities.
Level 1 Smart Growth Action Grants can be used to host the Smart Growth for the 21st Century Class or other educational activity such as a speaker who can address specific growth issues impacting your community.
Level 1 applications are accepted anytime from January 1st through October 15 with decisions announced approximately one week later. Grant funds are eligible for up to $1,500. A maximum of one Level 1 grant is awarded per year per association.
Download examples of successful Level 1 Smart Growth Action Grant Applications
Level 2 Smart Growth Action Grants provide seed funding to enable a state or local association to make the initial efforts to engage local land-use/transportation policy issues with other stakeholders and elected officials. Using a Level 2 grant is appropriate for supporting events of other organizations that REALTORS® are substantially engaged in.
Level 2 applications are accepted on a rolling basis from January 1 through October 15 with decisions announced approximately in 30 days. Grant funds are eligible for up to $5,000. A maximum of one Level 2 grant is awarded per year per association.
Download examples of successful Level 2 Smart Growth Action Grant Applications
Level Three – Not available at this time
Based on a review of program goals and resources, Smart Growth Action Grants are now offered at two funding levels.