I felt I had to write an article because the myth that low overhead is good is so widespread and pernicious.  I originally wrote the article in 2008 and updated it in 2018.   When a charity does financial statements that is overhead? A website informing the public of information on the charity is overhead?  A filing with CRA is overhead?  Properly issuing receipts is overhead.  Making sure that the charity’s money is spent appropriately is overhead.  Be careful when dealing with charities who claim low or no overhead and certainly don’t automatically view it as a positive.  Appropriate overhead can vary from charity to charity.   A charity should not spend more than what is reasonable, necessary and proportionate on administrative costs.  CRA also has a whole guidance on what are appropriate fundraising costs.

Here is our article on How Much Should a Canadian Registered Charity Spend on Administration?