Sources of Annual Housing Income
Room and Board—Room and board is exactly what the name says—it is what the resident pays for the privilege of living and eating meals in the Kappa Delta house.
The amount charged for room and board should be set at full occupancy such that it is comparable to other housing on campus—residence halls (dorms) and other sorority houses. Kappa Delta does not want to be overpriced if we can help it, or charge less than the market will bear. Some houses may provide only room and not board, depending on the kitchen arrangements.
Parlor Fees—“Parlor fee” is a historical term that is derived from the era when houses had formal “parlors” for receiving guests, what we now refer to more commonly as the “living room.” The parlor was the common area shared by all members and not the private rooms of the residents. Hence, the parlor fee is paid by everyone in the chapter for the privilege of using the common areas of the chapter facility for meetings, gatherings, study groups, etc. regardless of whether the member lives in the chapter facility or not. Often, parlor fee is bundled into the room and board charge for the residents and billed as a separate “line item” for members who do not live in the facility. If the residents pay the university directly for room and board, then everyone in the chapter should be charged parlor fee.
Meal plan—Houses with commercial kitchens can offer a “meal plan” to out of house members so they may enjoy the fellowship and convenience of eating meals at the chapter house with their fellow Kappa Delta sisters. This is a great source of revenue for houses with kitchens that can handle the extra meal demand and as an extra benefit, a great opportunity to build sisterhood and fellowship around the shared meals.
Chapter Rent—A number o f house corporations charge the chapter rent for its use of the house for meetings, events, etc.
Yearly budget—The yearly budget should be based on the income derived from the four sources listed above. The fees for the four items of income should be set to cover the yearly budgetary demands of operating the chapter facility, and provide a reasonable reserve fund for unexpected occurrences.
House Note/Facility Fees
The house note/facility fee should be collected from each new member and deposited into a separate, hopefully interest-bearing, account that will accumulate with each year of deposits. Think of the house note/facility fee as the “long-term” capital fund as opposed to the day-to-day operating funds of the house corporation. Every chapter should collect a house note/facility fee as mandated by the National Bylaws, regardless of whether the chapter has housing or not. Many chapters that feel they will never have housing are surprised when campus conditions change. Chapters who have been regular and faithful about collecting and depositing their house notes will be pleased to have this fund for the new housing demands. Chapters without house corporations must deposit their house note collections into the chapter house fund at Kappa Delta National Headquarters per policy contained in the Chapter Officers’ Handbook (COHB). These deposits will be available on demand from the chapter house fund and will earn 3 percent iinterest.
House note/facility fees should be used for renovation, redecorating or major maintenance (like a new roof or windows) that is out of the normal day-to-day operations. Regular maintenance should be in the operating budget.
Chapters and house corporations must receive permission from the chapter housing committee to spend $1000 or more of house note/facility fee funds.
Many house corporations collect room deposits to ensure the member moves into the house or vacates the house at the end of the contract and leaves the room in good shape. Deposits are not the property of the house corporation, but held “in trust” and must be returned if the property is not damaged and the resident fulfills her contract in its entirety.
to return to the March 2010 HUB.