Property Management Policy & Procedure Manual
Section 200: Equipment Acquisition
Effective: 03/01/1979
Revised: 11/01/2021


Individual departments may purchase equipment using state, sponsored, affiliated foundation pass-through, or auxiliary funds. Regardless of the source of funds, all purchases must be made in accordance with applicable federal and state law and Oregon State University (OSU) policies.

Equipment acquisitions may be made by purchase, loan, gift, transfer, trade, or fabrication. The equipment may be new or used. The acquisition cost must be equal to or greater than (=>) $5,000 per unit/item to be established as capitalized equipment. All other movable equipment of a lesser amount will be accounted for as minor equipment.

Allowable acquisition costs include any costs related to the obtainment and installation of the equipment such as the purchase price, shipping cost, installation expenses and registration/license fees. Also, all costs related to the importation of equipment from foreign countries (such as entry fee, broker's fee, cartage fee, custom's bond, import service fee and custom duty fees) are allowable as part of the acquisition cost.

Unallowable costs include extended maintenance, warranties and training.

Software in the purchase of equipment which is separately itemized on a vendor invoice is not capitalized. This cost is expensed as 20202 "software."

When determining the best method to acquire equipment, the following considerations should be made:

  • The method chosen should be in the best interest of the University.
  • The method chosen should be the most cost effective.
  • The method chosen does not circumvent normal procurement procedures.

See PRO 210 Fabrication for guidance on what constitutes a fabricated or assembled piece of capitalized equipment and specific approval procedures.

OSU may acquire ownership of equipment in several ways including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Purchase or fabrication of equipment using state, affiliated foundation flow-through, service center, or auxiliary funds.
  • Purchase or fabrication of equipment using federal or non-federal sponsored funds for which the award document states that OSU retains title upon receipt of the equipment.
  • Purchase or fabrication of equipment using federal or non-federal sponsored funds for which equipment title is vested with the sponsor and subsequently transferred to OSU at the completion of the project.
  • Donation of equipment.
  • Lease/purchase of equipment after the lease/purchase option has been exercised. Normally, lease/purchase equipment is treated as university equipment when the first installment payment is made.

OSU may acquire the use of equipment, though not ownership, by receiving the following:

  • Government-furnished property (GFP), with title vesting with the government.
  • Loaned equipment, with title remaining with the lender.
  • Purchased or fabricated equipment using federal or non-federal sponsored funds for which equipment title remains vested with the sponsor.