Gifts of personal property—works of art, manuscripts, and rare books—help support educating students and can greatly enhance the quality of life at the University. A gift of personal property made during your lifetime entitles you to the benefits of both an income tax deduction and a reduction in taxes on your estate. To receive these favorable tax benefits on lifetime gifts of personal property, the use of your gift must relate to the purposes of the University. For example, a painting given to the College for its permanent collection, or a volume given to the University's library are used for related purposes.

Reasons to contribute a gift of personal property include:

  1. You may receive a charitable deduction for the appraised value at the time of the gift.
  2. You can make a larger donation to Mercyhurst University, than if you sold the gift, paid capital gains tax on the sale, and contributed cash.
  3. The gift's value is removed from your estate, which lowers your estate taxes.

Gifts of personal property must be reviewed and accepted before a transfer of property can be made. Also, such gifts must be appraised by an outside expert.

For more information, contact Ryan J. Palm '07, associate VP for advancement, at 814-824-3320 or