Equipment represents a significant percentage of total expenses for a new church. Simply managing the list of required equipment can be a daunting task. Consider taking the following actions:
2. Gift Registry - Establish a "gift registry" for the new church at a local department store (e.g. Target, Walmart, etc.). Make it a goal to receive as much of your equipment as possible through contributions.
3. Publish Your Equipment List - Put your equipment list on your web site. Let people know what you need.
4. Prayer Emails - Include a link to your equipment list and highlight equipment needs in your ongoing prayer emails.
5. Corporate or Foundation Donations - Many corporations and foundations donate their old or excess equipment to charities. Send a letter to as many local corporations as you can find asking them for a donation of equipment. Include a list of what you need.
6. Corporate Promotions and Non-Profit Prices - Most corporations have special pricing for non-profit. Never assume you should pay full price. Ask anyone you get equipment from if they have special pricing for non-profits. Often, stores will sell floor models at significantly reduced prices to non-profits. Some organizations give non-profits equipment if they will use the corporations consumables. For example, Xerox will give non-profits a free color laser printer in exchange for agreeing to buy ink from Xerox.
7. Corporate Gift Cards - Many stores (especially franchise chains) are given an allotment of money that can be given to non-profits in the form of gift cards. You will not get what you do not ask for. Don't be afraid to ask.
8. Buy in Quantity/Volume - Find at least one (ideally many) other church planters who also needs to purchase equipment. Most vendors will give discounts for purchasing in volume. For example, the cost of a sound system will be lower if two or more systems are purchased at the same time. It is surprisingly easy to find other church planters to partner with in buying in volume.
10. Specialists - Check out Portable Church Industries (a Leading Edge Ministries partner specializing in complete equipment packages) and Group Imaging (specializing in aesthetics, banners, and signage).