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Small Project Loans Program
Finance for Congregations, Financing Buildings for Congregations

Purpose

The purpose of the program is to provide financing for relatively inexpensive projects in three broad categories: congregational mission, environmental stewardship, and critical/emergency.

Projects may include, but are not limited to:

  • Elevators, stair lifts and accessibility ramps
  • High quality sound systems
  • Kitchen upgrades
  • Exterior signage
  • Driveway/parking lot paving and lighting
  • Interior wall construction and/or demolition of walls
  • Electrical wiring, plumbing, and fire protection upgrades
  • Floor coverings/carpeting installations and mildew removal
  • Safe playground equipment
  • Energy efficient windows, doors, furnaces, and low flow toilets
  • Brick tuck-pointing
  • Emergency roof repairs
  • Solar Panel Installation

Application Fee

There is a $250 application fee.

Eligible Borrowers

  • Must be an Annual Program Fund Fair Share congregation at both the district and national levels
  • Must have total annual debt service that does not exceed 25 percent of annual income
  • Must have had a balanced budget for the previous year as well as for the current year
  • Must meet a minimum level of property and liability insurance (see APPENDIX B)
  • Must have a congregational vote to accept a loan (see APPENDIX C)

Term

The term of the loan will be from three to seven years.

Loan Amount

The minimum loan is $15,000 and the maximum loan is $100,000 but must not exceed three-times annual financial commitments from congregants.

Interest Rate

The interest rate is based upon the United States seven-year treasuries plus 3 percent. (Visit Selected Interest Rates (Weekly)—H.15 for current interest rate.)

Down Payment

A congregation must pay 15 percent of the project costs before a small project loan can be approved.

Example

Imagine a congregation with 100 members and an annual budget of $100,000. Part of the sanctuary roof begins leaking and the problem must be addressed immediately. The estimated cost is $47,060. The congregation pays the first 15 percent ($7,060 and borrows $40,000 from the UUA at an interest rate of 7 percent. Here are the details:

  • The loan term is 7 years
  • The loan amount is $40,000
  • Total loan payments are $52,370
  • Monthly loan payments to the UUA are $623

Annual payments to the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) are $7,481.

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For more information contact congstewardship@uua.org.