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Property & Capital Equipment

BPM-407 Inventory of Movable Property and Equipment

Revised August 13, 2007

Property - Definition

For purposes of this policy, the term "property" refers to all movable property and equipment purchased or constructed with University funds as well as that property or equipment owned by external sponsors but currently in the University's custody. In addition, it applies to all movable property and equipment received by donation, or acquired through governmental surplus property procedures.

It does not apply to other items such as land, buildings, infrastructure, or equipment which is not movable or which is permanently affixed to buildings or infrastructure. It also does not apply to consumable supplies.

Inventory Records

Each campus must maintain official inventory records for all University owned property which has a single item cost of $5,000 or more ($2,500 for UMHC), or is a gift with equal value, and:

  • Has an expected useful life of one (1) year or more; and
  • Is self-contained for its primary function (not a component part of any other piece of equipment); and
  • Has sufficient individuality and size to make control feasible by means of identification tags, numbers and/or manufacturer's serial numbers marked thereon.

Campuses may choose to maintain inventory records for additional items.

Requirements for record keeping for sensitive and portable equipment below this value are described in the "Responsibilities: Department Chairperson and Administrative Heads" section of this policy.

Property Associated with External Sponsors

All property purchased or constructed with external funding, or provided by an external sponsor, regardless of whether the title is retained by the sponsor or the University, must be inventoried, tracked and disposed of in accordance with the terms and conditions of the external sponsor's requirements. This is applicable to sponsored project assets as defined by the sponsor.

Property purchased by University Procurement Services with external University funds, where a designated entity other than the University will receive the property and title, will not be inventoried unless stipulated by the agreement with the entity providing the funding. It is the responsibility of the department initiating the purchase to notify the Procurement Service Center when these items are not required to be inventoried.

Reference: BPM 210, Sponsored Programs


Campus Procurement Service Center
  • Establish and maintain the records and procedures necessary for the accountability of the University property inventory.
  • Update the asset inventory records to agree with changes identified by departments regarding location, purchase sources, custodian and other critical data in the Asset Management system.
  • Maintain and update a listing of inventories completed by departments and notify the respective Campus Accounting offices of the status of completed inventories.
  • Determine the items to be inventoried and the numbers assigned. Property which has been acquired through external sponsors, or is on loan from another entity, shall have a unique designator as part of its inventory record to indicate its source.
  • Affixing the inventory decal or tag to the property. Non-owned property that must be tracked will be identified by a decal or tag of a different type and/or color than that affixed to University-owned property.
Department Chairperson and Administrative Heads
  • Are responsible for all property purchased or constructed and assigned to the department.
  • Must report any transfers or loss of inventoried property to the Campus Procurement Service Center.
  • Establish appropriate controls for all products purchased with University funds, maintain records and controls for sensitive or portable equipment such as laptop and desktop computers, monitors and printers, and guns, which are not otherwise inventoried under provisions of this policy, and produce evidence of such controls upon request from the appropriate authority. The information maintained must include:
    1. Item Description
    2. Make and Model Number
    3. Date Purchased and Price Paid
    4. Individual to whom the Equipment is Assigned
  • Notify the Campus Procurement Service Center of property that has been obtained from donations. Items received shall be entered on the records at fair market value.
    Reference: BPM 212, Gifts-Processing
  • Verify inventory records provided by the Campus Accounting Office semi-annually. Specifically each chairperson or administrative head must:
    1. Check the accuracy of the inventory list - including location.
    2. Certify that the property listed is on hand, usable, useful and needed.
    3. Certify that the location of the asset is accurate.
    4. Return the corrected inventory lists by the prescribed deadline.
Campus Procurement Service Center or Accounting Offices
  • Distribute an inventory report to each department chairperson, administrative head, or fiscal officer semi-annually.
  • Monitor the completed physical inventories and managing the list of inventories to timely completion.
Accounting Offices
  • Reconcile accounting amounts in the General Ledger with amounts recorded in Asset Management. See the Office of the Controller's Accounting Policy and Procedure Manual - 20.5 - Capitalization of Assets, for detailed accounting procedures.

Reporting Changes

A Property Inventory Change Report (UM Form 27) must be submitted immediately to the Campus Procurement Service Center to report any inventoried property that has been: lost, stolen, destroyed, relocated, found (having previously been reported lost or stolen), transferred to another department, or identified as surplus.

A Property Inventory Change Report must also be submitted to report the addition of any property meeting inventory requirements that has been constructed with University funds or received as a gift.

The terms of some sponsored project agreements specify that the sponsor retains title to property until some time (most commonly, end of the project or upon request after the end of the project) after the purchase of the property. A Property Inventory Change Report is required upon transfer of ownership.

A Property Inventory Change Report is not required to report the addition of any new property or equipment purchased on a Purchase Order.

A Property Inventory Change Report must be submitted to report any property meeting inventory requirements that has been provided by loan, either temporarily or indefinitely, by an external sponsor.


University owned property, or non-owned property for which the University has custodial responsibilities, shall not be sold, given away, destroyed or otherwise disposed of without the permission of the Campus Procurement Service Center or Chief Procurement Officer of the UM System.

Reference: BPM 308, Resale, Sale or Disposal