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Grants to Maine Nonprofits and Agencies for Projects to Preserve and Restore Historic Buildings

Belvedere Historic Preservation and Energy Efficiency Grant Program


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Maine Community Foundation Inc
Array ( )

Geographic Focus
USA: Maine

Important Dates
Deadline: 06/01/23 11:59 PM - Deadline for restoration and energy efficiency implementation proposals; requests for energy audits will be accepted at any time. Save

Grant Description
Grants of up to $5,000 and grants of up to $20,000 to Maine nonprofit organizations, municipalities, and quasi-municipal entities for projects to preserve and restore historic properties. Funding is intended to support projects in the areas of restoration, energy efficiency implementation, and energy audits. Eligible buildings must be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, be determined eligible for listing on the Register, or be a contributing building in a nationally designated historic district.

The Belvedere Historic Preservation and Energy Efficiency Grant Program invests in the preservation, restoration, and retrofitting of historic buildings in Maine. Grants from this fund focus on capital investments in historic buildings that serve as civic, cultural, or economic hubs for communities.


Priority will be given to proposals that most meet the following priorities:

  • Properties with historical significance at the local, state, or national level
  • Buildings that are utilized by and provide value to the community, or a compelling vision for the revitalization and reuse if the building has been vacant or underutilized
  • Proposals that include a clear project plan that preserves the historic integrity of the building
  • Organizations that demonstrate commitment to ongoing stewardship of the building and readiness to complete the project.

The grant committee will also adjust the final decisions to ensure a diversity of different types of projects and broad geographic range across the state.

Types of Funding

This program provides project grants for three types of projects. Proposals may combine restoration expenses with efficiency-related expenses as long as an energy audit was completed within the last three years. Requests for energy audits require a separate application that is reviewed on a rolling deadline. Proposals can include the cost of labor, technology, materials, and equipment related to the restoration or energy efficiency work on the building. Grants may also support design and engineering costs related to restoration as well as the cost of building assessments by qualified preservation professionals.

  • Energy audit: Energy audit grants are specifically for the cost of an energy audit of a historic building. Applications may be submitted at any time. Information on Energy Audit Grants can be found in the document listed in Supporting Documents below.
  • Restoration: Restoration projects include expenses related to the preservation, restoration, and reuse of historic buildings. This can include professional assessments, surveys, and plans by qualified assessors, engineers, or other building professionals. Restoration requests may also include energy efficiency measures recommended by an audit as long as the request does not exceed the maximum grant size.
  • Energy efficiency: Energy efficiency implementation projects include energy efficiency measures recommended by an energy audit. The proposal must be consistent with priorities identified by the audit. The audit executive summary must be included with the application (if the applicant does not have a summary, they may attach the full audit report). The audit must have been performed within three years to be current. Applicants must identify methods for measuring the impact of the efficiency measures. Energy efficiency grants may include other capital restoration expenses as long as the total request does not exceed the maximum grant size and if the requested restoration work ensures the integrity of the efficiency investment (i.e., moisture abatement, foundation or stabilization measures, or roof repairs). Energy implementation plans should reflect best practices for energy efficiency improvements to historic properties. Priority will be given to projects that also transition to cleaner energy sources and away from fossil fuels.


Additional Eligibility Criteria
To receive a grant, the building must:
- Be owned by a nonprofit organization or municipality or quasi-municipal entity.
- Be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, be determined eligible for listing on the Register, or be a contributing building in a nationally designated historic district. If you are not sure of the status of your building, please contact the Maine Historic Preservation Commission. If your building is eligible but not currently listed, we require a letter from MHPC confirming that eligibility.
- Follow the Secretary of the Interiors’ Standards for Historic Preservation for all renovations. (See

Funds may not be used for:
- Program, overhead, indirect costs: Funds may not be used for utilities, office equipment and supplies, insurance, and general salaries for maintenance or other staff. Allowable expenses under this program are capital expenditures only. Contingency costs must be paid with other funds
- Replacement vs. restoration (repair rather than replace): In general, unless it is unavoidable or recommended by a historic building professional to restore original historically accurate features, this program will not fund replacement of original building features. The most common requests for replacement tend to be windows. If you have questions about your approach, we recommend that you speak with staff at the Maine Historic Preservation Commission for advice before submitting your proposal
- Routine Maintenance: Please note: It is expected that applicants either have, or plan to establish, a regular maintenance budget for ongoing repairs and upkeep as part of their commitment to stewardship of their building. Routine exterior painting is an example of a maintenance project that would not be funded by this grant program. The grant committee will consider requests for capital repairs due to neglected upkeep or maintenance, but only if there is a clear explanation for the neglect and a detailed plan for future maintenance and care of the building to avoid such situations in the future
- Endowments or annual appeals

The Foundation will not fund the following, without exception:
- Expenses already incurred
- Regranting to a secondary grantee through a competitive process
- Political campaigns
- Lobbying in the form of calls to action on a specific vote
- Religious activities, including, but not limited to, religious services, promotion of religious beliefs, or activities that are restricted to church or religious group membership.

Pre-Proposal Conference
There will be a virtual information session from noon-1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 5, which will include a review of the programs and an opportunity to ask questions.

Register here:

A recording of the session will be available soon after.

Pre-Application Information
Key Dates:
- Application opens: March 1
- Deadline: June 1, 11:59 p.m.
- Notification: By August 15

Proposals must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m. on the program deadline. If the deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, the deadline will be 11:59 p.m. of the next business day.

Energy audits: Requests for energy audits require a separate application that is reviewed on a rolling deadline. Applications may be submitted at any time. Requests will be considered as they are received, and decisions will be made within four weeks of submission.

MaineCF will only accept one application per organization per grant program. Check with other personnel at your organization about collaborating on a single application. Applicants are responsible for ensuring that their organization does not make duplicate applications.

Eligibility and Grant Guidelines:

Watch the virtual information session here:

Estimated Size of Grant
- The maximum amount awarded for an energy audit is $5,000.
- The maximum total grant award for restoration projects is $20,000. (Restoration requests may also include energy efficiency measures recommended by an audit as long as the request does not exceed the maximum grant size.)
- Maximum grant size for energy efficiency implementation projects is $20,000.

Contact Information
For information and to apply online:

For questions about the application or review process or the eligibility of proposed projects, please contact Program Officer Katie Howard, or 207-412-0832.

For questions on technical aspects of historic preservation and to review specific approaches for your project, please contact Mike Johnson at the Maine Historic Preservation Commission, at 207-287-2949 or

For assistance with all energy audit and efficiency-related proposals, please contact Anne Ball at the Maine Development Foundation’s Maine Downtown Center at 207-512-4906 or

For technical support, please contact

For additional questions, you may contact or (207) 412-0835.

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