4 Tips for Church Budgeting
Help for avoiding budgetary headaches.
4 Tips for Church Budgeting

If your church is about to start the budgeting process, help it go more smoothly with these four tips. Remember—a budget serves to help you achieve your mission.

Don't Get Lost in the Numbers

It's easy to become overly involved with the mechanical aspects of budget construction and lose sight of the fact that budgets are for a church, a voluntary group of members sharing common religious beliefs, rather than for a corporation. Unless the budgeting effort considers human relationships, even the most precise efforts will be for naught if met with resistance, skepticism, or indifference.

Unanticipated Events May Occur and That's Okay

Many churches overemphasize the use of budgets to control expenditures. A budget is not carved in stone. A few changes in the annual operating budget or any other budget during the year might have to be made because of unanticipated events. These changes do not damage the planning and budgeting process. They simply reflect the difficulty of accurately forecasting the future.

Get Leadership Support

Church leaders must thoroughly support the planning and budgeting processes or the entire resource allocation exercise will be a lesson in futility.

Be Realistic

Though planning and budgeting are crucial to a church's financial well-being, they cannot replace effective week-to-week management. Plans and budgets cannot by themselves change the course of a faltering church. They are but tools to be used by skillful leaders.

For more information on budgeting, check out Church Finance: The Complete Guide to Managing Ministry Resources.

Related article: Finding the Best Approach to a Budget Calendar

This content is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is published with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought. "From a Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations."

Due to the nature of the U.S. legal system, laws and regulations constantly change. The editors encourage readers to carefully search the site for all content related to the topic of interest and consult qualified local counsel to verify the status of specific statutes, laws, regulations, and precedential court holdings.


If you found this article helpful, subscribe to ChurchLawAndTax.com for access to more articles like this one.

Become a Church Law & Tax Member



Experience a whole new way to set compensation. Eliminate the guesswork – get access to detailed compensation reports in just minutes.

Protecting Your Tax-Exempt Status

Protecting Your Tax-Exempt Status Member access only

Understand the requirements of your tax-exempt status.
Increase Giving at Church

Increase Giving at Church Member access only

Develop practical and digital strategies to cultivate a culture of giving.