Ask the Grand Trustee - Fall 2010

Question: What are the highest purposes of the house corp?
Answer: The primary purpose of a house corporation is to own or lease housing on behalf of the chapter. Secondary function is to do fund raising for renovation, new construction and scholarships.
 
Question: Who owns the house corporation?
Answer: The house corporation board of directors are elected alums who manage the corporation. While the house corporation may own property, no one personally owns the corporation (no stock or dividends). It is set up as a not for profit corporation for the benefit of the chapter.
 
Question: What kinds of things can a house corporation own?
Answer: The house corp can own land, housing, furniture, appliances and funds raised for the benefit of chapter.
 
Question: Can the house corporation dictate to active chapter and otherwise control chapter activity?
Answer: The house corp has no authority over active chapter operations except as it affects the landlord-tenant relationship. Chapter operations are the responsibility of the Chapter Advisor and Grand Praetor. If the house corp sees red flags like hazing and illegal activity, it should make these issues known to the Grand Praetor and Chapter Advisor for further action.
 
Question: There are two sample rental agreements posted at the Grand Trustee website at www.TheSigHouse.org, one for individuals and one for the chapter (master). Is it recommended that both of these be used?
Answer: Yes, both forms should be used if the house corp owns the chapter house. The individual rental agreements are necessary so that the house corp can enforce payment and terms on individual brothers. If individuals don’t pay or follow the terms, the house corp can evict them. The master rental agreement is between house corp and the chapter. It puts responsibility on the officers to maintain the common areas, enforce reasonable rules of conduct and those rules required by Sigma Chi, the university and chapter bylaws.
 
Have a burning house corp question? Email rich.thompson@sigmachi.com