Home Depot is one of the most well-known home improvement companies in the world. Core to its mission is giving back to communities through the Home Depot Foundation and its partnerships with other community entities. In addition to home improvement expertise, volunteerism, sponsorships and goodwill donations, Home Depot grants are made to support community goals. The two current programs are the Community Impact Grants Program and the Veteran Housing Grants Program.
Community Impact Grants Program
Through its community impact grants, Home Depot provides up to $5,000 to registered nonprofits that use volunteers to improve the community. Nonprofits are required to submit an IRS determination letter or Form 990 as proof that the organization has been recognized as a nonprofit by the IRS for at least one year.
Eligible Activities for Community Impact Grants
Successful applicants to the Home Depot grants program receive monies to purchase materials and tools to carry out their proposals. Eligible activities can include but are not limited to developing affordable housing units, improving energy efficiency or sustainability, landscaping, planting native trees and designing green spaces.
Applicants must submit an itemized list of materials and the associated cost required to complete the project. If selected, grantees will receive their awards in the form of Home Depot gift cards, which can be used at any Home Depot location to purchase materials.
Veteran Housing Grants Program
The Home Depot Foundation's Veteran Housing Grants Program awards grants ranging from $100,000 to $500,000 to nonprofit organizations for new construction or the rehabilitation of permanent supportive housing for veterans. Because veteran housing grants are made for significantly more money than community impact grants, additional eligibility requirements apply. Grant applicants must satisfy the following conditions:
- Be a 501(c)(3) in good standing with the IRS for at least five years
- Have a current operating budget of at least $300,000
- Be able to provide audited financial statements for the most recent three years
- Demonstrate previous and current experience developing and managing veteran housing
- Have an ownership stake in the development of at least 15 years
- Be actively involved in the continuum of care or other local collaboration to end homelessness in the community
Applying for a Veteran Housing Grant
Priority is given to cities with populations in excess of 300,000. Currently, the Home Depot Foundation is particularly focused on the following cities: Los Angeles, Seattle, New York, Houston, Detroit, San Diego, Denver, Chicago, Atlanta and Tampa.
Begin the process by completing the eligibility quiz on Home Depot's corporate website. If eligible, you will go on to complete a project proposal. If your proposal is approved, Home Depot will send you a link to complete the full application.
Home Depot Grants Writing Tips
To increase your chances of getting an award, it is important to follow the grantor's instructions exactly. Pay attention to due dates because most grantors offer ample time for submissions and do not allow extensions.
As is the case with many grant makers, Home Depot grants are submitted electronically. Familiarize yourself with the grant's requirements. It's not enough to merely have a good cause. You must be able to clearly explain the project and its benefits. Give your project a name that reflects its purpose, such as "Growing Food with Community Kids" or "Pine Grove Apartments: Rehabbing for Heroes."
It's a good idea to prepare your answers offline in a word processing program and then copy and paste into the actual online application. Be sure to proofread carefully. Double check budget figures to ensure accuracy.
Denise Dayton, M.S., M.Ed. is a freelance writer specializing in careers, education and technology. In addition to writing for corporate clients, she has published articles in Library Journal and The Searcher.