1. Do we have consensus for our vision?
Does the congregation have a clear understanding of where church leadership is headed and do they support the vision? If your ministry is just beginning to cast the vision for the future and determine the best direction forward, a Ministry Assessment can help “objectify the subjective” by providing key data to aid in decision-making, including market demographics, congregational surveys and a comprehensive financial review. For more information click here
2. Are we a healthy, growing ministry with a strong infrastructure?
Church leaders must consistently challenge and strengthen the “norms” of their ministry in the areas of mission, finances, vision and sustainability. Collaboration and feedback from other experienced pastors can offer invaluable perspective and reliable sounding boards for new ideas and direction. BGW’s “Re:Calibr8” program offers pastor-to-pastor coaching focused around 8 fundamental steps to aligning ministry vision and developing missional vitality. For more information, click here.
3. Have we counted the cost?
How much can we afford? Being responsible stewards requires an understanding of your church’s total funding capacity. This will help ministry leaders set realistic goals at the beginning of the project and avoid the pitfalls associated with designing a building the ministry cannot afford. BGW offers a free Funding Solutions Analysis from a certified public accountant that provides a comprehensive financial snapshot, reviewing 3 years of financials, cash flow, savings, fundraising history and potential, as well as borrowing possibilities. To start your free Funding Solutions Analysis, contact Scott Griffin at 801-409-1047 or email@example.com.
How much can we raise? The results of capital fundraising campaigns can range anywhere from 1 to 3 times your annual income over a 2-3 year period when utilizing a professional consultant. Do your homework and prayerfully consider all available options. Many firms and consultants charge a percentage fee based on the amount of funds raised. BGW’s Hearing from God program offers a flat-fee structure based on the size of the congregation. Also, while most capital campaigns rely solely on short-term donations, BGW’s comprehensive approach also engages the entrepreneurs within the church and leverages the power of planned giving.
How much can we borrow? If your ministry plans to borrow funds for the project, start preparing for the loan process as soon as possible. Scrub your budget and look for any areas of excess where you can scale back. Consider a new unlimited cell phone plan for staff, reducing travel or keeping those old chairs one more year. Don’t jeopardize your core ministry, but exercise discipline and start making mock mortgage payments to a dedicated account. This helps avoid payment shock and builds confidence to take your ministry to the next level.
4. Is our church reaching the next generation?
There is a 43% drop off in church engagement between the teen and early adult years. Consider what impact your future church building will have on the next generation and involve younger members in the planning process. Will your ministries and facilities be relevant and engaging to people of all ages in your community? Attend a BGW Seminar in your area to learn how BGW is designing church facilities for a new generation – facilities that are authentic, flexible, community-focused and financially sustainable.
5. What should we consider when looking for land to build?
Consider the big picture when you begin your search for the right piece of land, including the demographics and future growth potential of the community. Also, make sure the land is zoned properly and uncover any other potential restrictions on the land. Consider floodplains, wildlife mitigation, setback requirements, historic preservation issues, soil types, etc. Other crucial factors to research are the accessibility to the site from major roads, adequate land for parking and access to utilities. A local BGW contractor can walk you through these and other important considerations and help evaluate potential building sites. To find the BGW builder in your area, click here.
6. Should we build a new building or repurpose an existing building?
When it comes to planning for future growth, churches traditionally have thought in terms of buying land and building a new facility. But in today’s changing world, there are a number of reasons your church should seriously explore the potential of purchasing and renovating an existing commercial or retail building to meet your expansion needs. These “big boxes” can offer numerous advantages to a ministry. Ideal buildings are in a highly visible and accessible location, have ceilings of 18’ or higher for sanctuary space, have ample parking available, and offer a sales price that is up to 75% less than the cost to build a new facility. For more information and examples of repurposed church buildings, contact Scott Griffin at 801-409-1047 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
7. Should we integrate for-profit enterprise for financial sustainability?
Churches and Christian non-profits are facing ever-increasing challenges to sustaining their ministries, including cultural shifts in views toward church and changes in charitable giving and tax legislation. Church facilities are also among the least utilized buildings in America, sitting empty throughout most of the week. When planning for the future, consider how the building can be used to reach the community during the week, including methods of generating revenue that can sustain and expand ministry opportunities. BGW Sustainable Solutions offers ministries a turn-key, investor-led business model that can help them successfully integrate for-profit businesses such as event centers, hotels, daycares, senior housing, athletics and more.
8. How can we honor God throughout the building process?
The world’s way of construction is a broken process. The BuildingSmart Alliance estimates that as much as 70% of commercial projects are over budget or late and up to 50% of construction costs are waste. Consider integrating Biblical stewardship, God-honoring relationships and ministry outreach into the construction process. The revolutionary Building God’s Way approach has changed the way ministry-based facilities are constructed and reduced costs by an average of 20-30%. To learn more about this unique approach, click here.