Setting up a few accounts for managing our finances.
So one for all donations each month, one to hold all savings (for automatic payments), and another for the monthly “budget” (should we decide on such a system as proposed above).
This’d just make monthly financial analysis a little easier. Automatic payments from one account, donations into another, and choice spending from a third.
Contactless payment terminal for one-off donations
I believe Ben suggested the idea of a payment terminal at the front door for collecting donations, so that members could, if they so decide, tap their card on it to make a one-off $10 donation to the space.
Other charities and not-for-profits use such a system, and I have been looking around for providers in Australia who offer such services.
Ratify a $2k Reserve
Something else which I believe is a de-facto space policy by now, is that if our bank balance runs under $2,000, that we should perform a safe, managed shutdown of the space, allowing time to move all items of interest out of the space, and either donate them to other local interest group, sell them then donate the profits to such groups, pay for a skip and dispose of what’s left, and then leave gracefully.
It’d be good to have this as official space policy.
Another point is just bringing up that if anyone has any evidence that we, at any point, ever tried to contact the ISP internode to cancel or modify our line to Belconnen in any way whatsoever, then please let me know. All we need is an email or the record that you so much as made a phonecall to them after or during the move from Belco and we could get around $1k or so back from them.
I think that’s it for now, but again, feel free to add any suggestions
I’ll just edit this post so I don’t bump the thread above Free Pizza™, Next Tuesday™, Don’t miss it!
I’ll go into detail a little on member fee restructuring.
With the rent reduction and our death clock getting two years of borrowed time added to it, neither of these may be important anymore however I will list them regardless.
THESE ARE JUST SUGGESTIONS THAT HAVE FLOATED AROUND AND DO NOT NECESSARILY WORK TOGETHER
*Updated Baseline Membership Fee
One suggestion was to increase our baseline suggested membership fee to $50/month, as our costs have far more than doubled since we started at $30.
That said, with the rent decrease our costs have now dropped back to damn near nothing/month (well, 11 people donating $50/month or 18 people donating $30), so there’s no longer an upward force driven by an existential crisis.
Without this, I think it may be best to leave things as is, additionally the above suggested budget plan would itself encourage donations as every new or increased donation would go directly to space betterment.
That said, another suggestion was
Something suggested to me was to revert to something closer to the membership system we had in the past, with some modifications.
As proposed, this would involve a $50 mandatory yearly membership fee to cover insurance, and either a $20/month ongoing fee for unlimited space use or a $10 one-off fee for a single use of the space (the $50 still needing to be paid beforehand).
Grace would be given to prospective members on their first visit, however all concurrent visits would require both the yearly insurance fee to be paid, and either a $20/month membership… lets say, “Subscription”, or a $10/visit payment at the door.
This plan was conceived when we were a lot more financially desperate, while I don’t like backing off and getting soft simply because we no longer need to make changes as a matter of urgency, the question is now “In two years when we have to pay full rent, what will be the preferable system?”
Consider that the new suggestion actually reduces the overall yearly cost of membership from 12*$30=$360 to $50+(12*$20)=$290.
Throw in a card reader at the door (with receipt printer) and you don’t need to worry about which “casual members” have paid their one-off entry fee.
Yada yada it goes without saying that concessions would be made to those under financial pressure, however consider that for them the situation would be the same as usual, our policy of understanding wouldn’t change there, however for all other members they’d actually get a cheaper deal than they’re currently paying (average donations amount currently being 27/month, that’s averaging for months not donated in as well).
Additionally, for those who’ve been consistently donating $30+ a month for the last year, the initial insurance payment could be waved. This includes those that only make a yearly donation of a years worth of fees.
As those of you who’ve read my monthly financial reports would know, I’ve been keeping track of all member donations since January, so it would be pretty easy to work out who’s donated what and when.
In summary, on average, members of MHV would pay less for the space, monthly membership would be reduced, perhaps making it easier for some members to set up a recurring monthly payment, and looking two years into the future this is the system I think would be best to offer for new members, so we might as well start it now.