While the church is more than a building, like it or not, the condition of your church facility sends a message to your community.
The longer you attend a church, the less you notice the problems. You get used to the stains and smells. But newcomers will see them immediately.
If your church is like most churches, you could use a few small changes to send a better message and help people feel more welcome.
So here are a few simple things your church could do to improve your facility immediately:
Church storage often looks like an episode of Hoarders.
Cluttered hallways and classrooms look bad and communicate that your church is dirty and unorganized.
With limited storage space, the Christmas decoration, random youth ministry stuff, and supplies from last year’s vacation bible school pile up fast. But what if you need them again next year?
Most churches keep more junk than they need and don’t reuse as much as they think they will.
Make a rule that if you can’t store it correctly, your church can’t keep it.
Decluttering is free, and you can even make money selling off old equipment.
You may be surprised how much bigger your facility feels without so much clutter.
It’s amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do.
I’ve seen 20-year-old churches with 20-year-old coats of paint. The color is faded, the walls are stained, and it looks neglected.
Also, many church facilities look strange because there is no color scheme. The building constructed in the 70’s is one color, and the one built in the 90’s is completely different.
- How long has it been since your facility was painted?
- What does the color of your church communicate?
- Is your kid area colorful and fun?
A few buckets of paint and some volunteers will go a long way!
3. Update Signs
A lack of signage pointing newcomers in the right direction tells me that you either don’t want or don’t expect guests.
Some churches are littered with tacky paper signs, or even worse, passive-aggressive signs like “NO FOOD IN THE WORSHIP CENTER!!!!”
Walk your facility and try to imagine you are a guest coming for the first time and look for problems.
- Can handicapped and guest parking be found easily?
- Are there clear signs telling them where to take their kids?
- Is the front door visible?
- Could you find the bathroom without asking for directions?
I worked in portable churches for years. We held services in high school band rooms, cafeterias, classrooms, and auditoriums. But every weekend, with a bunch of banners and signs, we transformed the building to look like our own.
Here’s one company with some excellent church sign solutions.
Simple, readable signs make a huge difference.
4. Fix Lighting
Isn’t it ironic that a lot of churches are dark and dingy on the inside when we worship the God who dwells in unapproachable light (1 Tim 6:16)?
- Do you have old bulbs that flicker?
- Are any burnt out?
- Do projectors look dim or are they losing pixels because you haven’t changed their lamps in years?
- Are you blocking natural light from windows?
Replacing old light bulbs is a simple way to brighten your facility. You could probably even save money by switching to energy saving bulbs.
Also, upgrading outdated light fixtures or adding new lights is another relatively inexpensive way to change the feeling of your facility completely.
5. Set a Maintenance Schedule
Most church buildings become rundown because they aren’t regularly maintained.
Pastors and church staff get so busy in the day-to-day work of ministry that they forget about the facility.
Who can blame them?
But the grass isn’t mowed, the trees aren’t trimmed, the bathrooms stink, the lightbulbs aren’t changed, the AC unit keeps breaking, and dust blankets everything.
If you don’t schedule it, it won’t get done.
So whether you have the luxury of a maintenance staff or you need to recruit volunteers, your church needs a maintenance schedule.
- How often will you scrub bathrooms?
- Restock towels and toilet paper?
- Clean carpets?
- Change lightbulbs?
- Seal the parking lot?
- Wash windows?
- Mow the grass?
- Trim bushes and trees?
- Touch up paint on handrails?
- Perform HVAC maintenance?
- Clean out storage closets?
If your building and grounds were maintained perfectly, what exactly would it need to stay that way? Make a list.
If you can’t hire contractors or a staff member to work the schedule, then organize volunteer work days.
Keeping your church facility beautiful is simple when you have a plan. Any church on any budget can do it.
What are your church facility problems?