WELS CEF Frequently Asked Questions
Does WELS CEF offer IRA Certificates?
Yes, you may purchase a Retirement Certificate to hold an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). To do so you will need to open an IRA account with TMI Trust Company, which acts as our third-party custodian.
Who do I contact with questions about my Retirement Certificate?
Your rights and responsibilities with respect to your IRA will be determined by your direct agreement with TMI Trust, which can be reached at 1-800-262-2429.
Are there additional fees involved with owning a Retirement Certificate?
TMI Trust Company charges a $45 annual account fee to maintain your IRA, which is standard custodial practice. That fee is paid by WELS Church Extension Fund, Inc. on your behalf directly to TMI Trust Company, who will maintain all IRS required records and notify you with information as legally required.
What is the difference between the Matching Grant Program and Loan Program?
Matching Grant Program: provides matching capital grants to mission congregations that meet established requirements. The matching grants are funded by earnings from CEF operations, gifts, memorials and bequests made by WELS members directly to WELS CEF.
Loan Program: Operates as a revolving fund for all loans made by WELS CEF to WELS congregations. As the loans are repaid, the funds are reinvested into new loans to help start other mission congregations.
How much money has been distributed from the Matching Grant Program to WELS mission congregations since its inception?
$37.5 million of matching grants to mission congregations and $7.7 million of special grants to Home Missions have been provided by WELS CEF since 1993.
How does WELS CEF "prioritize" loan requests?
Loan requests are prioritized in order as follows:
- Home Missions
- World Missions
- Other WELS Capital Funding Projects
What is the difference between an investment certificate and a savings certificate?
A: Investment Certificates: earn interest quarterly. They have a set term e.g. 6-months, 12-months, 18-months, 24-months, 36-months, 48-months and 60-months. There is a penalty for early withdrawal on all loan certificate investments.
Savings Certificates: have no penalty for full or partial redemptions. Because of this liquidity, the interest rates offered on Savings Certificates are generally lower than those offered on Investment Certificates. Statement Savings Certificates accrue interest daily – interest is paid monthly. Our 1-Year Savings Certificates accrue interest daily – interest is paid quarterly. The 1-Year Savings Certificate typically pays a higher interest rate than the Statement Savings Certificate. All Stamp Program participants are invested in a 1-Year Savings Certificate and additional investments can be made at any time.
Where can I find current interest rates for investments in WELS CEF?
Each month, Current Interest Rates are posted on our website home page. Monthly interest rate information can also be found by calling toll-free: 1-866-511-7793. Or, you can sign up to receive the monthly rate updates automatically via email. Subscribe.
HOW TO INVEST
Learn about investing with the WELS Church Extension Fund.
Mission congregations can seek mortgage loans and grants through WELS CEF.