Nonprofit Centers & Why They Exist

Serve Denton operates two nonprofit centers in Denton, TX, which provide low-cost space and collaborative opportunities to nonprofit agencies in the health and human services industry. We are not alone in our efforts, there are almost 400 known nonprofit centers in the U.S. and Canada! Together our sector occupies 13.75 million square feet, houses 28,000 employees and serves 99,000 people per week. The majority of the information and the studies below are from Nonprofit Centers Network. To find out more about them, click HERE.

What is a Nonprofit Center?

Social Purpose Real Estate
Social Purpose Real Estate

A physical place (usually a building or campus) where mission-driven organizations intentionally share space for mutual benefit, ranging from cost savings to shared programming.

Not all nonprofit centers are the same! There are three main types that you will find. 

Theme Centers: Focused on a common mission (for example, arts, literacy or international poverty).

Service Centers: One-stop-shop model. Service Centers are some of the oldest in the network. Providing services in one spot reduces the burden of travel and scheduling for many organizations.

Multi-sector Centers: Tenants are loosely linked by their 501(c)(3) status. Multi-sector centers are very common in dense urban areas, where nonprofits can be priced out of the market, and in rural areas where there isn’t enough critical mass for a theme center. One of the hallmarks for a multi-sector center is providing affordable, high-quality office space for their community.

Why Do Nonprofit Centers Exist?

Nonprofit Centers exist to cultivate collaboration between local nonprofit agencies, help nonprofits save on overhead costs and/or provide a convenient location for those in need to receive services.

Nonprofit Centers Network (NCN) surveyed nonprofit agencies to find out about their need for sustainable and reliable real estate. They found that 82% of respondents are concerned about the negative impact of real estate prices on their financial sustainability, 68% anticipate a decision about moving in the next 5 years, 38% have already moved in the last 5 years, largely due to the cost of space.

How Nonprofit Centers Benefit Their Tenant Agencies

Nonprofit tenants say that being in shared space has allowed improvements in theirmission (overall ability to achieve goals and organizational credibility), finances (stability of costs and net revenues), and programming (quality of services, program scope, and program size). Many respondents from the NCN survey also noted the space they occupy at their nonprofit center is better than the space they were previously in.

We see this all of the time with our tenant agencies at Serve Denton. Having a physical office space provideslegitimacy to agencies, which matters to clients and potential donors. We save our agencies major overhead costs, which allows them to serve more people. And all of our partner agencies have significantly expanded their programs since partnering with us.

We welcome you to be a part of what we’re doing so together, we can serve more of our neighbors! To learn more about the need for nonprofit centers in Denton County, feel free to contact us at info@servedenton.org.