It isn’t common to hear or even see a church opt for institutional loans. However, this doesn’t mean that no Church out there ever needs one. Some still do, and, in fact, there are a few resources to help churches through the process, and many of these church loans help church leaders access the money they need to grow their church. While church loans may have some similarities to home mortgage loans, many other differences make church loans quite different.
That being said, if you are a church leader looking for a church loan to access the finances you require, here are the considerations you must make before opting for church loans:
1. Be Wary of the Bank’s Interest Versus Yours
While you might be led to believe that lenders are looking out for your best interest, they’re also looking out for their interest. For that reason, you might be encouraged to take more debt than what you can afford, leading to financial issues.
To avoid this issue, you must reach out to multiple lenders to see for yourself what the actual figure for healthy debt is. If you can, opt for lenders specializing in church loans, as they will care about your ministry along with providing a good loan. When you do get a loan, let your architect know so that they can remain within the limits of the money.
2. Reach Out for Congregational Approval Before Deciding
Remember, it is through the contributions of your congregation that the loan is covered. Their tithes and offerings will give you the funds to pay off the money you borrowed. Because of this, you must always reach out to the congregation for approval before making the financial decision to pick a loan and go forth with the project.
3. Do Not Assume That a Bigger Building Will Generate Growth
A wrong reason to take out money to expand the church is believing that a more prominent building will generate growth. While a bigger building will certainly hold more people, this doesn’t mean more people will show up. The main basis of your decision for a bigger building should be the growth you’re experiencing on a year-to-year basis. This is a number you can rely on and can be used to plan the proper growth strategy to meet growth rates.
4. The Debt Payments Should Not Go Over a Third Of Tithes and Offerings
There are many other expenses you will still have to cover that aren’t just the church’s expansion. It includes operational costs, missions expenses, and the like. You must still have enough money to cover those expenses, and as such, we highly recommend that your proposed debt payments don’t go over around a third or even less of your undesignated tithes and offerings.
All churches, big or small, need to know how to manage their budget. Of course, playing it too safe also means that the church will fail to make the most out of various opportunities to grow, hurting its success. That being said, loans are an excellent way for churches to access the money they need to grow. Still, many considerations must be made to ensure that the money borrowed is effectively paid off and enhances their primary mission.
Century City Mortgage experts offer customized financial solutions to meet unique financial needs and achieve unique financial goals. If you are looking for church financing services in Los Angeles, apply with us today!