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Chapter House Winter Break Checklist

Updates from Lexington

As stressful as this time of the year may be with final exams and project deadlines, it is vital that we do not neglect important maintenance items to ensure our chapter houses stay in good shape over the winter break.  The four leading risks to a chapter facility during holiday breaks are water freeze, fire, vandalism and theft. Failure to take the necessary precautionary steps can cost a chapter and/or local house corporation thousands of dollars in avoidable repairs.

Utilize the following checklist produced by Holmes Murphy, leading insurance broker for fraternal organizations, to prepare your chapter house for the upcoming winter break:

  • Open the indoor faucets slightly to allow water to trickle as moving water does not freeze as easily.
  • Ensure that someone is checking the interior and exterior of the facility regularly during the break.  You can usually accomplish this by notifying your campus or local police department.
  • As a chapter, clean the house before departing for break – nobody wants to come home to a dirty house.
  • Respond to any leaks promptly to mitigate damage and prevent further harm.
  • Keep the furnace on and thermostat set at or above 60 degrees.
  • Leave the doors open to cabinets that contain water lines; this will allow heat to enter the area.
  • Unplug all non-essential appliances and electronic devices – televisions, computers, etc.
  • Place additional insulation on exterior walls and windows.
  • Insulate exterior doors appropriately, and assure they close and latch completely.
  • Clear all snow and ice from sidewalks, fire escapes, and walkways and ensure someone is assigned this responsibility over the break.


There is no need for the chapter to return from the winter break to a damaged chapter house.  Work with your local house corporation and college/university to ensure your chapter house is properly prepared for the winter break.  For additional ideas on how to prepare the chapter facility for winter break check out this resource from Holmes Murphy.

© 2015-2017 Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
9 North Lewis Street, P.O. Box 1869, Lexington, Virginia 24450
Phone: 540.463.1869 | Fax: 540.463.1669 | Email: headquarters@sigmanu.org

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