Hopefully, you have already completed a budget for 2018 for your church. It is a great tool to help you make better spending decisions, avoid overspending, react quicker to a change in collections, and help in the prevention of misuse of funds. Using a budget allows you to be in control of your finances instead of just reacting to the inevitable financial swings that happen to every organization. Once you use one, you will wonder how you ever operated without it.

When budgeting for expenses this year, it is estimated that the cost of most items is projected to increase 2-3 percent. Of course, the biggest expense line for almost every church is payroll. Average pay raises this year are expected to be between 2.7 and 3.5 percent.

If you provide health insurance, as in years past, employers are experiencing substantial increases again this year. Unless tithes and offerings are trending higher, you will need to look at other areas to reduce costs to make up for these increases, or require employees to pay toward the premiums.

Remember to budget for replacement of assets (i.e.: HVAC, roof, equipment, etc.).

If your bank loan requires you to meet certain financial ratios as a condition of a loan, now is the time to budget to make sure these requirements are met at the end of the year.

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