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Understanding Personally Procured Moves


A personally procured move, or PPM, may be right for you if you are interested in making a little extra money and don't mind the extra work. Previously known as a do-it-yourself, or DITY move, a PPM is voluntary and allows you to move yourself and, hopefully, pocket the extra cash. The program is open to active-duty and retiring service members, but you must have prior approval from your service's transportation office.

Why do a personally procured move?

There are several good reasons to consider a PPM. In general, if your shipment is a manageable size, you might want to think about packing and moving yourself. You can find more details and information on a PPM by visiting Move.mil. Following are the reasons service members consider a PPM:

  • Saving money. The government will pay you up to 95 percent of the cost it would have paid to a commercial moving company to ship your goods. This could result in a profit once your costs are deducted.
  • Having more control. You maintain more control over your household goods by being involved in the packing, loading and transportation. You decide which moving services you want to hire out and which ones you want to do yourself. But with that control comes the responsibility for the planning and execution of your move. A poorly planned move could lead to higher expenses or damage to your property.

A PPM is not for everyone. More work, planning and responsibility are involved. With that in mind, there are several things you'll want to consider as you decide whether or not to do a PPM, including the following:

  • The transportation office must provide counseling and approve a PPM. If you don't get approval your payment could be limited or denied.
  • Any actual moving costs that exceed the government cost will be at your expense. This can include overweight costs or expenses not covered. A PPM does not eliminate the possibility of excess costs.
  • An advance allowance may be permitted to help defray up-front costs. This depends on your service branch's regulations.
  • Some expenses are not authorized. These include tow dolly rental, insurance fees and sales tax.
  • Temporary storage may be available in conjunction with a PPM. Check with your transportation office for more information.
  • You must file any loss or damage claims directly with you commercial moving company before you file with the government. Claims are usually not paid unless the loss or damage was due to circumstances beyond your control, such as an accident.
  • Payments more than your actual moving costs may be taxable. Read IRS Publication 521 for more information.

How to execute a personally procured move

  • Make an appointment with the transportation office. A representative can tell you if you are authorized a PPM and provide you with information on how it may benefit you. Be prepared with an accurate estimate of the weight of your household goods. For help estimating your shipment use the weight estimator on the Move.mil Before Your Move web page.
  • Decide what kind of help you'll need. Will you need packing help? Will you have a company take care of the actual transport? Determine your level of involvement and check into rental vehicles or moving services. Be sure to ask for a military discount when you talk with the moving companies.
  • Procure the necessary equipment, including trucks, packing materials and hand trucks. Be sure to carefully review all rental agreements.
  • Plan your schedule so you have plenty of time to pack before moving day. Before you begin, read the safety information in Quick Tips for Safety When Moving.
  • Locate weight scales to get certified weight tickets. Get tickets for each shipment covered, both empty and full. Even if you hire a moving company, you will need to provide certified weight tickets.
  • Keep all your receipts. Detailed records and receipts will be used to verify the move and to determine the taxable portion of your payment. These include receipts for vehicle rental, gas, oil, boxes, packing supplies, hand truck rental, tolls and weight tickets. Meals and other travel expenses are not included as part of a PPM, but may be reimbursed separately under your travel claim.
  • Submit a settlement claim to the destination transportation office. You'll need a DD Form 2278, two copies of your empty and loaded weight tickets, PCS orders, vehicle rental contract and other receipts. 

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