Friday, October 26, 2007

for sale: is their a kingdom in the housing market?

We’re in the process of buying and selling houses. We will make money on the properties we sell, because the property market has risen. We will need to put more money into a new house, because the market has risen. In other words, we’re making a good looking paper profit, which needs to be set alongside our mortgage commitments which will stay the same.

forsale.jpg I am interested in what blog readers have done, or heard done, in terms of applying the Kingdom to sale and purchase of real estate. (And I’d most like to hear from people who have been in a similar situation, as I am a bit tired of armchair theoreticians at the moment.)

Do we give some of the paper profit to God? And in doing so potentially increase our mortgage?

Posted by steve at 11:47 AM


  1. There is a good example of the Kingdom in action in the property market here:

    Also, I have heard of a few wealthy people in Churches allowing young marrieds to rent-to-own their homes.

    In my case, my in-laws used the money they had saved through not having a home loan (due to inheriting a house and making some good decisions) to help us into a house.

    The Salvation Army have produced a couple of reports on the housing market and homes which may produce some insights:

    Comment by Paul M — October 26, 2007 @ 1:18 pm

  2. all of these examples seem to presume someone has a nest egg or a 2nd house. that’s not the case in the example i’m asking for help with.


    Comment by steve — October 26, 2007 @ 2:00 pm

  3. Steve

    Our situation is quite different with just purchasing our first home is quite a different manner from most…. Long story can wait for another day. However an issue that I have wrestled with for a few years before God worked some miracles and we have our home may be applicable with your questions.

    The question that I ask is inflation driven increase, an increase? The context I have wrestled with is wrt Interest. I have come to believe that charging interest pegged into inflation is not interest at all…. That is an interest free loan in the past would have been under an non inflation environment.

    Eg That a loan in the past of $100 would say purchase 100 loaves of bread, and when it was paid back over 10 years, would still purchase 100 loaves of bread. Where as today, the $100 paid back over 10 years, at the end of the ten years it would only purchase say 50 loaves.

    Inflation being a rather modern invention.

    So if your increase in house value is from an inflation increase then it is not a true increase in the context of giving. That is $100 house, now is worth $200, but $200 purchases 100 loaves of bread. Which was the same as what the house was worth to start with.

    It is just holding its value in the context of a devaluing dollar value.

    Hope that makes sense. I know that example is a bit tenuous, but hope it shows what I am aiming at.

    Now the obvious question that I can hear you asking is how the heck do I know what section of the increase in caused by inflation… And what is caused by a true increase in profit. Sorry can’t help you here. But some indexing, or other comparisons may be of interest.

    Hope that this may be a pointer in the right direction. I will be interested to see what answer you come up with…

    Comment by david whyte — October 26, 2007 @ 9:46 pm

  4. Not sure if this is directly relevant or not, but we sold a house back in 2005. We haven’t bought since, so weren’t looking to offset into another house purchase, but we were looking at living on the savings instead of any income, for an open-ended period. The housing market seems comparable, in that we could make a good profit on what we paid for the house.

    Anyway, the kingdom principle. We sold our house, privately, to someone who needed one. We got three real estate agents to value the house, and we offered it for the middle amount. In fact, the buyer wanted to pay the highest value (a lot more), but we made it a condition of sale: buy it at the lower price we are asking, or not at all. She couldn’t understand why 🙂 But we’d been blessed by the increase in value, and were in a position to bless her by asking for less than we could have done. And for us it was also about trusting God to provide for us in the next season, rather than striving to make the most ‘financially secure’ position. I guess you could call the difference between what we asked for and what we could have asked for a sacrifice, or at least a thanks offering.

    Comment by Andrew Dowsett — October 26, 2007 @ 11:20 pm

  5. We recently sold our house in Christchurch and purchased one in Tauranga. We struggled over whether to tithe the increase we made on the house as in fact we were buying a more expensive house so our mort gage was increasing. In the end we gave a gift (but not 10%) and did so out of thanks to an awesome God who provides so much.

    Comment by Aaron — October 27, 2007 @ 2:59 pm

  6. Isn’t it about heart attitude rather than *how much*?
    That said, when we bought our first house, we took out the smallest mort gage we could, not wanting to be tied to the mort gage burden for most of our lives. We had it paid off in seven years, which sounds kinda Old Testament, doesn’t it!
    It seems cliche to say so, but surely you’re heading in the right direction by asking the “seek first his kingdom” question.

    Comment by Rachael — October 28, 2007 @ 6:40 pm

  7. no hard and fast rule … listen to God and act accordingly.

    not much help I know . sorry

    Comment by lorna (see-through faith) — October 29, 2007 @ 9:07 am

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