Your home is one of your most valuable assets. With a retained life estate, you can give your home to us now, but continue to live in it for as long as you wish.

Make a greater gift than you might have thought possible and receive immediate tax benefits without changing your living situation.

retained life estate may be right for you if:

  • You want to continue to live in your home.
  • You do not plan to pass on your home to family or other heirs.
  • You itemize your income tax deductions and want to save on income taxes now.
  • You want to make a significant gift to Sigma Chi Foundation.
 

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A retained life estate is an irrevocable arrangement between you and Sigma Chi Foundation. You deed your home to us in exchange for an agreement that gives you the right to live in your home for as long as you choose, even for the rest of your life. When your retained life estate arrangement ends, your home becomes our property to use or sell. Typically, we will sell your home and use the proceeds.

Irrevocable gift 
A retained life estate is an irrevocable arrangement. Once you deed your home to Sigma Chi Foundation, you cannot change your mind and get your ownership back. This requirement assures that the value of your home will go to support Sigma Chi Foundation.

Give your home, second home, or farm
Most donors create retained life estate arrangements using their home. It is also possible to create a retained life estate with a second home or any other structure that functions as your residence, such as a boat. You may also create a retained life estate with a farm, including raw farm land.

Your responsibilities
You will be responsible for all regular expenses on your property while you live in it. These expenses include routine maintenance, property taxes, utility bills, and insurance.

Tax benefits
You will receive an income tax charitable deduction in the year of your gift. The amount of the deduction will depend on the value of your home and how long your plan will last. If you itemize instead of taking the standard deduction you could save significant income taxes. If you cannot use your entire deduction in the year of your gift, you may carry forward all unused deduction for up to five additional years if you are eligible to itemize in each of those years.

By removing your home from your estate, you may also reduce estate taxes and probate costs when your estate is settled if your estate exceeds the then applicable estate tax credit.

How long can my plan last?
You most likely will want to retain the right to live in your home for the rest of your life, or for the lives of you and your spouse. Other possible terms include more than two lives, a specific number of years, or a combination of lives and years.

Ending your plan early
If you decide you no longer want to live in your home for any reason, you can end your retained life estate early either by giving your remaining interest to Sigma Chi Foundation or by selling your property in cooperation with us.

Special considerations
Giving your home to our organization requires some extra steps of which you should be aware. These steps include the following:

  • You will need to establish the value of your property by obtaining a qualified appraisal. 
  • We will need to examine your property and conduct our own analysis of its value. For example, we will want to know if there are any debts, taxes, or liens owed on your property.
  • Once we accept your gift of real estate, we could become responsible for cleaning up any environmental problems your property may have. This sort of cleanup could be very expensive. Therefore, before we accept any gift of real estate, we routinely conduct a review to make sure the property has no environmental issues.

Example

Henry and Joan Henderson, ages 78 and 77, still live in the house in which they raised their three children. Henry and Joan are in good health and have no plans to move. Their house has appreciated greatly over the years and is now worth about $600,000. Their children are grown with homes of their own and have no interest in keeping the house in the family.

Henry and Joan would like to make a large gift to Sigma Chi Foundation, but they don’t feel comfortable giving a significant portion of their investment assets away. They are excited to learn that they can give their house instead while continuing to live in it for as long as they wish. Their lifestyle won’t change at all as a result of their arrangement. They also are attracted by the income tax charitable deduction of about $406,535* that they can use immediately to reduce their income taxes if they itemize their income tax deductions.

Benefits

  • Henry and Joan can continue to live in their home for the rest of their lives.
  • They receive an immediate income tax charitable deduction of about $406,535*.
  • They may deduct up to 30% of their adjusted gross income in the year of the gift. If they cannot use their entire deduction in the year of their gift, they may carry forward the balance for up to five additional years.
  • They will provide major support to Sigma Chi Foundation, currently worth $600,000.
  • Their home is no longer in their estate, potentially saving estate taxes.

*Henry and Joan’s income tax charitable deduction may vary depending on the timing of their gift. Their ability to benefit from an income tax charitable deduction will depend on their ability to itemize their income tax charitable deductions.

Donors-Scholars Initiative

Each year, your generous donations make it possible for the Sigma Chi Foundation to grant numerous academic scholarships and awards to our deserving undergraduate and graduate brothers. Providing scholarships and academic awards furthers the Foundation’s goal to promote academic excellence. We proudly award brothers who show outstanding leadership, academic motivation and commitment to their chapters and campuses. The Sigma Chi Foundation will provide $505,000 in academic scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students over the 2018-19 academic year. This year, your gifts impacted individuals from 169 different Sigma Chi chapters. This includes an 12th-consecutive annual increase of $25,000 or more in awards.

The Sigma Chi Foundation’s Donor-Scholar Initiative provides a naming opportunity to interested alumni who wish to directly support the Foundation’s expanding scholarship program. Donors contributing to this effort at an endowment level (a one-time gift of $25,000) will have an annual academic scholarship named for themselves, or an honoree, for a minimum of 30 years. Donors are also encouraged to establish a mentor relationship with the recipient(s).

learning continuum

Our overarching goal is to positively impact every undergraduate brother every year with values-based leadership training and support.  Sigma Chi is focused on the relevant issues confronting our brothers on college campuses today, better educating these young men on alcohol misuse, drug abuse, hazing, sexual misconduct, suicide, depression and much more through an integrated presentation of our values.

By providing our members with world-class leadership initiatives, through the support of major gifts to the Foundation, Sigma Chi is helping young men develop into character-based leaders who are committed to the betterment of their chapters, campus and community.

The curriculum leads brothers to reflect upon leadership within themselves and the actions they take in everyday life, and think about how that impacts their communities and others. These modules allow our in-person programming to be more targeted and effective.

Click here to learn more about Sigma Chi’s leadership initiatives supported by the Sigma Chi Foundation.

planned giving

“I wanted to reflect that my career arc was fundamentally improved because of Sigma Chi. And I wanted to be able to leave a legacy beyond my own life that would provide that opportunity to others. ... What Sigma Chi and the Foundation do is help build good men. Our nation needs that, and I thought there was no better way to support that than through a planned gift to the Foundation so the next generation can have the benefit of Sigma Chi and learn and grow as young men.”

John Pasquantino UNLV 1984
White House Deputy Associate Director, Office of Management and Budget

Leave A Legacy

A planned gift to the Sigma Chi Foundation enables a brother to define their legacy and directly impact the lives of future Sigma Chis and our Fraternity.

Why are planned gifts so important? Our ‘One Voice’ strategic plan envisions a $100 million cash reserve that will expand world-class leadership programming and academic scholarships. While we are making great progress, planned gifts will be vital to our ultimate success.

By including Sigma Chi Foundation in your estate plan, you will help us achieve our goal and, at the same time, enjoy practical advantages for your estate and heirs.

Here are ways you can leave a legacy:

gifts by bequest

A bequest to Sigma Chi Foundation can be made for a specific amount, a percentage of your estate, or all or a portion of what is left after you have provided for your family. With a bequest, you retain control of and use of your assets during your lifetime and can potentially save on income taxes, capital gains and estate taxes.

life insurance gifts

Life insurance policies are powerful philanthropic tools often allowing a donor to make a much larger donation than they ever thought possible. Donors can name Sigma Chi Foundation as their beneficiary or transfer poilcy ownership to the Foundation and then make tax deductible gifts to pay the premiums. Sigma Chi Foundation receives the proceeds of the policy after your lifetime.

life income gifts

Your gift can be structured to provide you income for life. Sigma Chi Foundation will make a fixed payment to you for life with the remainder benefiting the Fraternity. Such arrangements are particularly appealing because donors can often reduce taxes and increase their spendable income. You benefit now and Sigma Chi benefits later.

gifts of retirement assets

Designating Sigma Chi Foundation as a beneficiary of all or a specified percentage of your 401(k) or other retirement plan assets can save your estate both income and estate taxes. Additionally, if you are age 70.5 or older, you can roll over up to $100,000 a year from your IRA as a charitable gift and count it towards your required minimum distribution.

bell chapter challenge

As an undergrad, your home chapter was your Sigma Chi world. It was where you forged your leadership skills, formed lifelong bonds of friendship and shaped what kind of man you would become. Please consider engaging with your Sigma Chi Foundation to continue that rich legacy at your chapter.

make your chapter a bell chapter

Sigma Chi has made a difference in the lives of over 300,000 brothers and these brothers want to give back. More importantly they want to give back to where they lived Sigma Chi, their own chapter. The Bell Chapter Challenge provides an excellent opportunity to make this happen and provides your chapter with enhanced benefits from the Foundation.

Your unrestricted, and tax-deductible, gift to the Sigma Chi Foundation will support the key leadership and scholarship programs provided by Sigma Chi for your chapter. These cutting-edge, valuesbased opportunities help change the lives of undergraduates at your chapter, bringing them to their full potential in college and life.

Our chapters need strong, values-based leaders to grow stronger. Engage with your Sigma Chi Foundation today and cultivate tomorrow’s leaders!

benefits provided to bell chapters

  • Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop
    Bell Chapters can send up to 5 additional attendees to Workshop for free.
    Gold level Bell Chapters will receive an additional $1,000 travel stipend for Workshop.
  • Horizons Leadership Training Program
    Bell Chapters will receive up to 2 designated slots for qualified undergraduates
  • Academic Scholarships
    Bell Chapters will receive up to 3 designated $1,000 academic scholarships for qualified undergraduates.
  • Education and Leadership Stipend
    Gold Level Bell Chapters will receive a $3,000 educational stipend to cover the costs of educational programming for the chapter.
  • Crossroads Program
    Bell Chapters will receive the Crossroads program at no cost.
LEVELS BLUE GOLD
Amount $10,000 per year
$250,000 Endow*
$20,000 per year
$500,000 Endow*
Chapter Benefits
  • 3 Additional free registration slots at KTLW (8 Total)
  • $250 KTLW Travel Stipend
  • 1 Designated Horizons Slot
  • 2 Designated $1,000 Academic Scholarships that will recognize lead donor
  • Crossroads retreat at no cost to Chapter
  • Donor plaque for chapter house
  • 1 Exclusive Bell Chapter Dinner invite at KTLW
  • 5 Additional free registration slots at KTLW (10 Total)
  • $1,000 KTLW Travel Stipend
  • 2 Designated Horizons Slots
  • 3 Designated $1,000 Academic Scholarships that will recognize lead donor
  • Crossroads retreat at no cost to Chapter
  • $3,000 Stipend for Journey Chapter Retreat
  • Donor plaque for chapter house
  • 1 Exclusive Bell Chapter Dinner invite at KTLW
  • Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop
    Bell Chapters can send up to 5 additional attendees to Workshop for free.
    Gold level Bell Chapters will receive an additional $1,000 travel stipend for Workshop.
  • Horizons Leadership Training Program
    Bell Chapters will receive up to 2 designated slots for qualified undergraduates
  • Academic Scholarships
    Bell Chapters will receive up to 3 designated $1,000 academic scholarships for qualified undergraduates.
  • Education and Leadership Stipend
    Gold Level Bell Chapters will receive a $3,000 educational stipend to cover the costs of educational programming for the chapter.
  • Crossroads Program
    Bell Chapters will receive the Crossroads program at no cost.
Blue  
Amount
  • $10,000 per year
  • $250,000 Endow*
Chapter
Benefits
  • 3 Additional free registration slots at KTLW (8 total)
  • $250 KTLW Travel Stipend
  • 1 Designated Horizons Slot
  • 2 Designated $1,000 Academic Scholarships that will recognize lead donor
  • Crossroads retreat at no cost to Chapter
  • Donor plaque for chapter house
  • 1 Exclusive Bell Chapter Dinner invite at KTLW
Gold  
Amount
  • $20,000 per year
  • $500,000 Endow*
Chapter
Benefits
  • 5 Additional free registration slots at KTLW (10 total)
  • $1000 KTLW Travel Stipend
  • 2 Designated Horizons Slot
  • 3 Designated $1,000 Academic Scholarships that will recognize lead donor
  • Crossroads retreat at no cost to Chapter
  • $3,000 Stipend for Journey Chapter Retreat
  • Donor plaque for chapter house
  • 1 Exclusive Bell Chapter Dinner invite at KTLW

*Based on accumulated cash in your chapter’s Bell Fund.

For more information contact Dakota Chavez, Associate Director of Development, at (847) 425-4408.

Did you know?

The Sigma Chi Foundation is eligible for all company matched gifts made to 501 (c) (3) foundations. Please check with your employer to see if you can double the size of your gift!

Bell Chapter List for 2019-2020

other ways to give

memorial gifts

You may wish to direct memorial gifts to the Sigma Chi Foundation to honor the memory of a deceased brother. Unrestricted gifts will be applied to the area of greatest need to support educational and leadership development opportunities for undergraduate members. Gifts may also be directed to a specific chapter or program fund. The Sigma Chi Foundation is a 501 (c) (3), charitable, educational organization and gifts are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowable by law. Following is suggested language that may be used in an obituary to direct gifts to the Sigma Chi Foundation on behalf of a brother who enters the Chapter Eternal.

Contributions may be made to the Sigma Chi Foundation, 1714 Hinman Ave., Evanston, IL 60201.

matching gifts

The Sigma Chi Foundation is eligible for all company matched gifts made to 501 (c) (3) foundations. Please check with your employer to see if you can double the size of your gift!

distinguished visitors program

The Sigma Chi Foundation’s Distinguished Visitors program has provided alumni with an opportunity to reconnect to their Sigma Chi roots and impact undergraduate brothers since its inception in the 1980s. This year, 24 brothers attended the Huntsman Horizons Leadership Summit in Snowbird, Utah or the Balfour Leadership Training Workshop in Bowling Green, Ohio. During their visits, these men, who are among Sigma Chi’s most accomplished brothers, shared their values, their wisdom and their perspective on leadership with undergraduate brothers.

regional alumni receptions

Over the course of the 2018 to 2019 fiscal year, the Sigma Chi Foundation Board of Governors and staff made a targeted effort to connect with alumni in United States metropolitan areas with special reception events. Hosted by Foundation board members and donors, these events provided an opportunity to deliver updates from the General Fraternity and to discuss Sigma Chi’s forward direction. The receptions will expand to new regional locations over the present 2019 to 2020 fiscal year. For more information on these events or to receive a reminder when the Sigma Chi Foundation visits your area, e-mail the Foundation at foundation@sigmachi.org.

volunteering

Have some time on your hands and would like to contribute in other ways? Then consider the Fraternity’s volunteer programs. Help out on the international level in fraternity governance, on leadership programs such as the Balfour Leadership Training Workshop, or on one of the committees that keeps the organization running.

amazon smile

Did you know that you can contribute to Sigma Chi while making an online purchase through Amazon? Visit smile.amazon.com and select the Sigma Chi Foundation as your philanthropy of choice. A small percentage of each purchase made through Amazon Smile will support the leadership mission of Sigma Chi.