When seeking for grant writing services, you must take caution; thus, know how to detect scams. It is not that you do not trust people; you just avoid scams. You are going to shell out your hard-earned money. Thus, you just want to make sure that this will go with the right purpose and that will benefit you.
But, how would you know if the service is not real? Here are ways to find out if it is a scam.
Your Guide to Detect a Rip-Off
1. So much “dollar-talk.”
The grant writer on the other line begins to discuss money alone. She will use a sweet talk, telling you that with only a small amount of money you will pay, you will get a huge sum. But, did she ever ask you about your project? Did she open-up the stiff competition in grant applications? If she did not, then hang up the phone.
2. Ignore the obligation.
The grant writer talks about free money in grants. She adds that once you get the fund, you have no other obligation. She even tells you to use the fund the way you want it. In truth, grant is not all about free money. It is about doing and accomplishing your project that benefit your community.
3. No more ifs, no more buts.
There are grants for various businesses, so she says. This is a lie. There are funding restrictions for businesses. More often than not, businesses that propose innovation and technology research and development are the ones being considered for funding. Do not allow yourself to become a victim of this false statement.
4. Call you.
No need to call for the service, the scammer will be the one to find and call you. This is not a usual business practice in legal grant writing companies. Typically, it is the clients who call to inquire about grants.
If someone calls to inform you that you win a grant, do not let your joy ‘eat’ you. Be focused. Ask yourself: “Did I ever apply for a grant?” In order to win a grant award, you must first apply for one. If not, why will an organization give you funding when you did not even request for it? This is a grant scam. But, what if you did apply? Well, does the person on the phone represent the funding organization? If you are not sure, then call the foundation and ask about the person. You may also inquire if the information you receive is valid.
5. After giving the money, no communication has ever transpired.
She said, you pay him this amount and she will be in charge of everything. Did she ask you about your plans? Did she ask you information about your project? Or did she talks to you after getting your money? If your answer is “no”, then you have been scammed, for sure.
Beware of scammers. There are corrupt people in search for more victims. So, the next time you hire a grant writer, be patient if she asks a lot of details. Importantly, understand when she tells you that you are not eligible to apply for a grant as it is a prerequisite in all grant applications. He is just being honest. Honesty will not hurt you, right?