Managing charity resources

All charities need resources - financial, human or other assets - to achieve their aims. The effectiveness of a charity depends on the way its resources are controlled and used.

This section sets out our advice and guidance which will help trustees understand good practice and the extent of their powers and duties when investing and managing charity resources.

Managing finances
Charities in an economic downturn
Land and property 
  • Acquiring land - our guidance for charity trustees who are thinking of acquiring land for their charity’s use or as an investment
  • Disposing of land - explains what trustees need to know about selling, leasing, transferring or mortgaging charity land
  • Custodians and nominees - explains how individuals can be appointed to hold title to property or assets of a charitable trust
  • Official Custodian for Charities land holding service - helps charities to avoid legal problems which can arise when a charity owns land, particularly if the charity does not have the status of a company.
Pensions
  • Charity Reserves and Defined Benefit Pension Schemes - looks at the risks attached to a charity’s involvement in a defined benefit pension scheme for its staff. It also looks at the accounting implication of membership of the scheme, the role of the various regulators and the potential liabilities for trustees.
  • Defined Benefit Pension Schemes Questions and Answers on Defined Benefit Pension Schemes following recent changes in pensions legislation and to help charities manage their pension schemes in the economic downturn
Investment of charitable funds and social investment 
  • Investment of charitable funds - explains the powers and duties of charity trustees when investing charitable funds
  • Common investment funds - focuses specifically on Common Investment Funds (CIFs) which are one form of investment
  • Common deposit funds - focuses specifically on Common Deposit Funds (CDFs) which are one form of investment.
  • Social investment - explains how charities may pursue their charitable purposes through the provision of loans or loan guarantees, the subscription or purchase of shares, or through the letting of land and buildings
Related resources
  • Ex gratia payments by charities - describes the procedures which charity trustees must follow when they wish to make an ex gratia payment out of the charity's funds
  • Guidance on electronic banking - aimed principally at small and medium-sized charities and answers the questions we are most often asked by charities about electronic banking
  • VAT registration - explains how charges for admission to museums, gallerys, art exhibitions, zoos, or to theatrical or choreographic performances of a cultural nature are exempt from VAT when supplied by an eligible body

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