Most Pastors are not real estate developers, planners, or builders, but their faith-based organizations face the same real estate development needs as corporations.
In the same way that companies must often expand their product lines, facilities, and warehouses in order to meet demand, churches have to expand their physical space and programs to meet the needs of their members and to fulfill their mission. Achieving this requires expertise in planning, design, land acquisition, development, and construction.
Faith-based organizations often grapple with numerous hurdles and challenges when they face real estate development needs, due to limitations that are typically less challenging for growing for-profit corporations. However, there are solutions that involve connecting churches with aligned real estate planning and development professionals.
Real Estate Development Obstacles for Churches
Following are examples of hurdles that Churches often face when seeking to acquire and develop properties to expand services for their members and community.
Lack of access to professional services for effective land development.
Limited expertise in sourcing key services for planning, design, land acquisition, development, and construction.
Challenges in securing financial services for church expansion.
Lack of expertise in managing various professionals and disciplines involved in a development project.
Limited oversight capabilities in the planning, design, development, financial, and construction phases.
Churches don’t regularly navigate the business world as for-profit companies do, for obvious reasons. Faith-based organizations primarily focus on spiritual growth, worship, fellowship, humanitarian causes, serving the community, and other related causes. They differ from for-profit businesses that continually engage in financial matters and business activities that naturally facilitate inroads for development and expansion as they grow.
While many faith-based organizations are strong in faith and vision, they often lack in resources and capabilities that are essential for real estate development, while for-profit companies seamlessly obtain these resources as they expand.
Releasing Dormant Potential
In many cases, churches have land available to them with substantial equity and the ability to expand. However, obstacles prevent them from realizing this potential despite the need, demand, and their capacity to meet them. This dormant potential is common with many faith-based organizations in numerous cities throughout the country.
By making the right connections, activating, and appropriately supporting the church’s vision, this dormant potential can be released, and significant positive spiritual impact can be unleashed for the benefit of the members and the community.
The Benefits of Churches Expanding Everywhere
From a spiritual perspective, God expects mankind to “be fruitful and multiply” upon the land that He created (Genesis 1:28). This mandate for human beings started at the beginning of creation. Expansion is a good thing, and the desire to grow is embedded in our very nature.
When a church grows within its community it opens a path for the Spirit within the area to increase because churches generally focus on spiritual growth, worship, fellowship, humanitarian causes, serving the community, and other noble causes. Therefore, the expansion of churches promotes positive spiritual transformation within their immediate areas and beyond, and positively impact the lives of many people. Of course, there are exceptions, but this statement is true of churches that have true noble causes, missions, and positive goals for society.
Most people are concerned with the economic, social, and physical enhancement of their communities, as they should be. However, the spiritual element is equally as important, and efforts to help growing faith-based organizations expand should be supported, as it contributes to the enhancement of communities.
How Professionals and Businesses Can Help
Faith-based organizations should have the same opportunities to expand as for-profit corporations have; however, they often face limitations that hinder or impede their ability to grow and to improve their facilities and services, despite the needs and demand within the areas they serve. Following are some ideas of how professionals and businesses can participate and help eliminate the real estate development limitations of a church that they wish to support, and that is seeking to expand:
1. Offer professional services on a pro bono basis, or for a substantially reduced fee that would only be due if the project is funded and/or as the project can afford. This has the potential to reduce significant hurdles and obstacles, if developers, architects, engineers, builders, and other participants in the development process facilitate services to their churches with no upfront financial burden to them.
2. Source professionals that are willing to provide services as described in #1 (above), and connect your church with these like-minded professionals. Real estate brokers and agents tend to be experts at making valuable connections, so they can be ideal for this role; However, any member of a congregation can also participate this way.
It takes a devoted heart and a strong will to seek, find and make a beneficial connection for your church’s expansion efforts in your community. This can be of great benefit for your area.
3. Private investors and financial institutions can source and/or create financial programs to help fund their church’s expansion in a way that best accommodates the church based on its income and assets.
The above are only three examples but there are numerous ways to help your faith-based organization with their real estate development needs. In doing so, you can be part of a significant spiritual transformation for your area.
In my company, Metrovitalization, we incorporated a “Faith-Driven” page within our website a few months ago to share our plan to support the real estate development and expansion goals of our church, Jubilee Ministries International, under the leadership of Dr. Mark Kauffman, Apostle. Our church has a goal to develop new educational facilities, expand the church’s food drive (The NOW Project), develop a new larger building for our growing congregation, and expanding numerous services for our community. Metrovitalization is devoted to providing professional real estate planning, development and construction services to support this vision so that we can be a part of the transformation that will happen in our community through Jubilee Ministries International.
I’m sharing this in hopes that others will do the same and find ways to support the visions of their churches to help transform their communities spiritually as well. If you would like to know more about how Metrovitalizationuses real estate development for spiritual transformation, see our Faith-Driven page to learn more.
How To Get Started
Be fruitful and multiply! Every real estate development project starts with a vision. Develop a vision for the spiritual growth of your community. Align yourself with the vision of the leaders in your faith-based organization. Get to know the vision, mission, and purpose for growth of your church, and get behind it if you find that it aligns with your own mission for the spiritual growth of your community.
Find ways to offer services you can provide that will help support the real estate development goals of your church. I provided three possibilities above. Use them as examples and find your own specific path. Discuss it with your Pastor to get ideas on how you can help, and what the needs are for the church’s real estate development objectives. Share this blog with your Pastor and other church leaders to start discussion these concepts.
Many churches have the need to create and deploy real estate development projects that can create significant benefits for their members and communities, and further their missions; However, they face many obstacles and hindrances.
Church members, professionals and residents can help break down the real estate development barriers for churches and take part in significant, impactful, and transformative spiritual growth for their areas. This transformation starts with the spiritual leaders in our communities, but they can’t achieve it alone.
The spiritual paradigm shift in an area necessitates a combination of vision, faith and effort from like-minded and like-hearted people that huddle around their spiritual leaders and support their vision for the spiritual development of their areas. I hope this short reading inspires you to do just that!
Ricky Trinidad is the President of Metrovitalization, a real estate planning, development and construction company in New Castle, PA.