This manual has been prepared to assist all departments of Boston University understand the policies, procedures, and government regulations regarding moveable capital equipment from the time of acquisition through disposal.

All purchases that are deemed to be moveable capital equipment owned by or located at Boston University should be identified. This includes items that are donated, leased, loaned, or transferred to BU, as well as all equipment purchased by BU with University or sponsored funds.

Moveable Capital Equipment is defined as any article of non-expendable tangible property (e.g., automobile, centrifuge, microscope, projector, network server) that meets the following capitalization criteria:

  • Purchased item has a useful life of one year or greater.
  • Cost of the item is $5,000 or greater, including delivery and installation costs, and including the cost of attachments required to operate the item when those attachments are acquired as part of the original equipment purchase.
  • Boston University has title to, is the custodian of, or is held responsible to account for the item.

Each Member of the Boston University community has a general obligation to safeguard and make appropriate use of property owned by or accountable to BU. Funds are appropriated to each department’s budget to maintain and service the department’s equipment. Equipment must be kept in good working order and free from defects.

New Construction & Renovations

For all capital projects in excess of $100,000, the capitalization threshold of $5,000 is waived for the purchase of movable capital equipment, provided the following requirements are met:

  • The equipment must be non-expendable, tangible personal property having an economic useful life of more than one year. During the normal course of business, these items would be expensed solely because they did not meet the University’s $5,000 capitalization threshold. This exception allows for the capitalization of an original complement of low cost equipment for the initial outfitting of a tangible capital asset or operational unit, or an expansion or renovation to either.
  • Equipment eligible for this treatment should be budgeted and charged on the capital budget project as G/L Account 510100 (Minor Equipment) for non-capital items that do not meet these requirements should be expensed.
  • This equipment will be accounted for as a composite asset and will be depreciated using the straight-line method over the applicable useful life with no salvage value.

Questions regarding Property Management policies and procedures should be addressed to:

Property Management
Post Award Financial Operations
25 Buick Street, Room 228
Boston, Massachusetts 02215

Property Manager:
Benjamin DeGennaro, Jr. (617) 353-8087

Property Administrator:
Maura Blanchard (617) 353-8083
FAX (617)353-6740

Property Management Team’s Role

Property Management (PM), located within the department of Post Award Financial Operations (PAFOSponsored Programs (SP)- Post Award SP- Post Award assist...), develops and implements policies, procedures, and a system that enables effect management of equipment for Boston University. Property Management provides support for all matters regarding moveable capital equipment related issues from pre-purchase considerations through retirement of assets. Property Management staff members can assist with purchase & sale, accounting for, and disposal of moveable capital equipment. Property Management should be consulted and can facilitate with equipment matters throughout the entire lifecycle from purchase planning to asset disposition.


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