Our New Home FAQ's

FAQ’s from our Small Groups

What we heard:

It was great being able to visit every small group to chat and pray about our New Home campaign.

Overall the feedback was really positive, with the fundamental drivers of the New Home campaign finding resonance with the membership of Salt Church. We’re excited about the possibilities of what God might do with a New Home!

Across the groups there were also some common questions raised – some of which are briefly covered in Our New Home booklet and some not at all. Irrespective here are some responses to these common themes.

Shaun, Rob, Andrew & Michael
The Building Committee

1. Will there be a separate bank account for giving towards our New Home?

Yes. The Admin Committee has a new account set up (separate to Salt’s general account) for the express purpose of funds to our New Home. The account details here and will also be on Our New Home pledge cards distributed from Sunday 28th May.

2. How can we be confident about the security of the New Home campaign funds?

Funds given for New Home will be handled with the same transparency and security as our general funds administered by our Administration Committee of Salt Inc. and governed by our constitution (see here, including Clause 56 on page 27 ‘Winding-up or Dissolution’ stipulating no assets may be distributed to members). The funds given will only be used for the purposes of providing a new home for Salt and will not become part of the general revenue. The Admin Committee are also considering a Trust Fund to provide further security for the use of the funds towards a New Home for Salt.

3. What will happen if, after a year or more, we aren’t on track with the pledged amounts, or we don’t reach $1M after 3 years?

Whilst that would be very disappointing we would remain prayerfully committed to our new home for the same reasons we began. As a step in the journey to realise our vision we would look at options such as utilising funds we have raised to lease a larger and more suitable property that allows us to live out the vision that God has placed on Salt, however long term this could be a more expensive option

4. Is there a way we can better use the $1M throughout those 3 years rather than it just sitting in the bank?

The giving amount will be building gradually through the duration of the Pledge timeframe of 3 years (although we are praying for a good jump start through the current series). The Admin Committee will review the option of placing the funds into a secure term deposit so that we can achieve a secure return but still be able to access the funds when we need them.

5. What is our plan for affording the eventual loan repayments? (e.g $2M loan over 30yrs at 7% = $160k/yr)

As part of getting the loan the lender will require us to prove that we have the capacity to repay the loan.The leadership would not take on a commitment that we are not able to fulfil. We expect over the next 3 years to increase the number of regular givers as part of the overall health of our church as well as continue building a flood of life long disciples who are committed to the vision of Salt. As such our general revenue is expected to increase via the number of new givers. As the time approaches to take out a loan we will also offer givers the opportunity to minimise our interest by depositing in an offset account on agreed terms.

6. We’re already running out of space at 275 let alone for a further 3 years. What is the plan before we get our new home?

Praise God for growth! This is a good problem to have and one the ministry team are prayerfully considering to enable not hinder growth at 275 before we get a larger space.. Apart from giving to our New Home whatever interim solution we come up with will involve sacrificially stepping up to serve to make it happen. We’ll speak to church when the timing is appropriate.

7. Couldn’t the funds be better used for gospel ministry?

The reason we’re investing in a New Home is for gospel ministry. The making of lifelong disciples is our vision and prayer. A New Home will help do this better, for more people, more securely and for generations to come.

8. What if we raise more than our $1Million target?

This would be excellent! Some of the benefits would be: Acting more quickly in acquiring property, getting a better property and/or position, reducing our risk of inhibiting growth or getting caught out when Council decides to demolish 275, and reducing the loan we require.

9. What if I’m not feeling joyful about giving?

We will feel a range of emotions as we give sacrificially with our finances, not dissimilar to giving our energy and time. The Apostle Paul expresses this in the Bible in range of ways i.e. ‘God loves a cheerful giver’ (2 Corinthians 9:6-7) and the ‘joy’ of the Macedonian christians who gave out of their poverty (2 Corinthians 8:2). If we waited for our hearts to be in the right place before we gave ourselves we wouldn’t do anything. Ask God to work on your heart, this is a spiritual issue with bigger implications than our New Home and start to practise generosity even in small ways to help your heart catch up.

10. What are our next steps?

We’re in stage 2 of a 5 stage process (see pages 4 & 5 here) and preparing ourselves financially. In particular our goal is to raise $1 Million towards a deposit and prove to a lender we can service a loan of up to $3 Million. At Grow on Wed 7th June we’ll announce how we’re going towards our target and from there be in a better position to assess how quickly we’re able to move forward. Our building committee will continue to sharpen the requirements and criteria of our new home but serious investigation on property will be limited until we have funds ready to go and we’re in a position to prove to a lender we can service a loan. Generally, a lender will want to see a 3 year history of giving to support a loan application making our 3 year lease a timely period to prepare financially.

11. Will there be a wider group of people involved in the design process of our new home?

Yes absolutely. It’s anticipated as we move through the stages of acquiring our New Home different skills will be consulted or required on our building committee.

12. Will we get a good central location? Is there a commitment to buy within Wollongong CBD & how is that area defined?

What we’re able to purchase will depend on the funds we are able to raise and a loan we can afford. Like purchasing a home we will need to determine our key priorities and even seek creative solutions if we are to get a central location. The area we have defined thus far is bordered by Stuart Park to the north, the railway line to the west and Swan St to the south. Last year when the committee researched property there were options on the outskirts of this area but there is no question competition is fierce especially with developers building residential apartment towers in our city centre.

13. Should I share the amount I’m giving our New Home with others?

You don’t have to. All giving information at Salt, including pledges for Our New Home, is kept private. Only our Treasurer, Bookkeeper and as necessary our Lead Pastor have access to this information. But talk to a godly christian brother or sister about the wisdom of sharing in your small group or with others at church. This could be really encouraging if the desire is to spur one another but beware of the dangers of pride, of comparison and judgmentalism (to name a few!). If you can’t keep these in check, best to keep it to yourself and think of other ways to encourage others including your honest story of struggle, joy, sacrifice and privilege.

14. What happens to the money if we don’t make the 3 year amount?

The funds remain set aside for our New Home. Our 3 year goal has been set for a number of reasons – it’s more achievable to spread our giving over a longer period, we’ve been offered a 3 year lease at 275 and a lender would usually require proof of 3 years giving for a loan application.

15. Will the new building only be used on Sundays and for staff during the week or will it be hired out and used for outreach events during the week?

It is anticipated to be used during the week for Salt, community group hires and our mission events. We’re expecting our own facility in a good location will provide even more opportunities for making disciples in Wollongong than we currently have at 275.

16. How much do I pledge when so much could change for me over the next three years?

Lots of things change and we’re not in control, God is! Some of us are in seasons of life that are more uncertain and that’s ok. Give it your best shot and if over the course of the next 3 years, you discover you are unable to fulfil your pledge commitment, please let us know so we can adjust our donation expectations accordingly.

17. What if I’m not at Salt in 3 years time?

None of us know the future and this is so much bigger than you. One of the key ways we will impact Wollongong at Salt is not only joyfully and prayerfully giving to our New Home but also staying in Wollongong to see it happen! That won’t be possible for everyone and so if that’s you, know your gift will contribute to the making of disciples in Wollongong for generations to come.

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