The National Housing Strategy Research and Planning Fund provides support to not-for-profit organizations and registered charities undertaking housing research. The research goals must be consistent with the priority theme areas and populations of the National Housing Strategy.

New investments will enhance research collaborations among CMHC and key housing stakeholders.

Overall program funding is $6.6 million with $600,000 available in 2018.

The next open-call competitive application process will launch on April 30th, 2019


The National Housing Strategy Research and Planning Fund provides support to not-for-profit organizations and registered charities undertaking housing research.  The research goals must be align to the National Housing Strategy’s vision.

The objectives of the Fund are to:

  • build collaboration, engagement and alignment with stakeholders working to achieve common goals
  • support the housing community’s research capacity development

This stakeholder-focused funding opportunity helps promote interest and involvement in housing research outside of government :

  • it supports data development
  • it cultivates and supports highly focused expertise to rapidly overcome challenges
  • it develops solutions to improving affordable housing for communities across Canada

This fund provides financial support in three different streams:

  1. funding support for individual research projects
  2. funding support for a “program of research
  3. funding support for planning activities with a focus on research


There is $600,000 available in 201819 to cover all streams of activity.

We anticipate that up to six applicants will receive funding as part of this call for applications in the following streams:

  • Program of Research Support : You can request up to $250,000 for a program of research grant from CMHC. You must provide a minimum of 25% (cash and/or in-kind contributions) of the total amount requested. Grants can be distributed over two years.
  • Research Project Support: You can request up to $100,000 for an individual research project grant from CMHC. You must provide a minimum of 25% (cash and/or in-kind contributions
  • Planning Activity Support: You can request up to $50,000 from CMHC. You must provide a minimum of 25% (cash and/or in-kind contributions) of the total amount requested.

CMHC’s contribution to the amount available for this initiative is subject to availability of funds. These funds are determined by an annual vote by parliamentary appropriations and the conditions that may be attached to them.

Duration: Funds must be used within 2 years of release.

In-Kind Contributions

The types of in-kind contributions that are recognized and considered eligible are:

  • equipment
  • access to unique databases/software
  • professional, analytical, or other services
  • employee salaries (i.e. the salary o an employee not listed on the application form)
  • use of facilities
  • materials and technology
  • licenses

Non-Eligible In-Kind Contributions: Funding should not be used to fund ongoing salary support.

Uses for Funding: 

A) Research Project and Program of Research

Support may include, but is not limited to the following: · Funding to carry out research projects. This can include literature reviews, environment scans, international scans, surveys, interviews, data analysis, profiles and case studies. It can also be used to support hiring of consultant to conduct this work. · Bring research findings into action (dissemination activities).

B) Planning activities

Funding may include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Activities that assist potential teams. This can include knowledge-users and other stakeholders working together to identify research questions. Alternatively, emerging issues and priorities that could form the basis of a grant application.
  • Stakeholder consultations that include citizen engagement activities. This can be in regard to needs, gaps and opportunities in the housing research landscape. It can relate to priority policy issues and/or priority research questions where common understanding is lacking or requires further development.
  • Initial planning and discussion of a research project among potential team members. This can assess the viability of the project and the partnership.
  • Conducting an environmental scan or preliminary synthesis of relevant literature, activities or programs.
  • Early-stage planning to determine possible commercial viability of a discovery.
  • Hiring a consultant to prepare research applications for groups that don’t have the capacity to do so on their own.
  • Opportunities for knowledge exchange involving stakeholder linkages. This can inform practice, and/or policy that could potentially lead to an application to a funding opportunity.
  • Gatherings of stakeholders where the main objective is to facilitate regional/national and/or international collaboration from a variety of backgrounds. This can be building new and existing multi-sectored partnerships that include a significant number of participants from outside the conventional community. It can also be consensus meetings, networking and partnership development events interested in applying to a funding opportunity.

Note: All travel-related costs must comply with Treasury Board Travel Directive and applicants must select the most economical means of travel when booking transportation, accommodations and meeting facilities.


Applicants must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • Your request involves the promotion of the value of housing needs and research and is aligned with the overall interests of CMHC
  • Your request is consistent with the strategic directions as outlined in the strategy
  • You are an active not-for-profit housing stakeholder in Canada and is in good standing with CMHC
  • Your request has potential for broad impact and if focusing at the regional level. Meaning that it can scale up to the provincial, territorial, national level, or apply to other regions.
  • Your confirmed partner contribution must be met at the time of application
  • A letter of support will be used to confirm your partnership contributions (partnerships that are not confirmed at the time of application will not count towards the 25% partnership contribution requirement)
  • The same applicant (or organization) can only apply to the Fund once per competition and support cannot be given in two sequential years for the same project, event, or identical activity
  • Funding will only be provided for research projects or activities that have not yet occurred at time of merit review (September)

CMHC requires that all grant recipients follow a structured reporting process:

For Research Projects and Programs of Research Projects: You must submit a mid-term report within 6 months of funding disbursement. This must be followed by a final report within two months of the end of the grant.

For Planning Activities: You must submit a final report to CMHC within two month of the date of the activity in question.

The results of these reports provide CMHC with an opportunity to:

  • obtain information on the impact of programs · evaluate the impact of CMHC funding
  • advance knowledge translation by providing selected information on the results of funded research its partners, the research community and the general public
  • standardize the capture, collection and analysis of information relating to the results funded research

You will report on:

Financial statements: This should encompass all costs associated with the project, including staff and contractor salaries; equipment purchases and travel expenses.

Results and impact of the project/activity: This should include initial goals and an honest assessment and address whether the program yielded the desired results.

Lessons learned: This should include information on the project's major takeaways, including unexpected challenges faced.

Sustainability plans: An initial plan for sustaining the program can help convince funders to renew your grant, if relevant.


The Research and Planning Fund Review Committee will evaluate all eligible applications. Government-based representatives form a review committee to assess these applications according to the criteria and weighting outlined below.

In all cases, only applications scoring 80% or higher will be eligible for funding.

Research Projects/Program of Research:

  • Concept and Relevance of the Project: 25%
  • Project Management: 25%
  • Knowledge exchange and/or Dissemination: 25%
  • Feasibility: 25%

Planning activities:

  • Relevance: 35%
  • Activity objectives: 35%
  • Knowledge exchange and/or Dissemination: 15%
  • Feasibility: 15%


Applicants are encouraged to review and follow the Initiative Application Guide designed to provide specific instructions for completing the application form.

  • Application form (PDF) **Important: To use this interactive PDF, right click (Ctrl + click on Mac) the link to save the file, and then open it in Adobe Acrobat.
  • Application guide (PDF)
  • Historical housing research held in CMHC’s Housing Knowledge Centre
  • Glossary
  • Relevant information from the 2016 Let’s Talk Housing National Consultations was used to identify the most important housing challenges where research could provide answers. More detailed analysis on these consultations can be found in What We Heard: Shaping Canada’s National Housing Strategy.


The next open-call competitive application process will launch on April 30th, 2019


General inquiries about the strategy or technical support:

Date Published: May 2, 2018