Can You Write Off Moving Expenses on Your Taxes?

By Staff

Moving isn't cheap, but there's a pretty easy way to save on your moving costs if you're relocating because of work: deduct your expenses off your taxes.
It's pretty straight-forward (at least compared to most IRS rules). 

To be able to do so, you must pass certain tests in the eyes of the government.
First, the move must be related to your job, and the move needs to be a certain distance from your previous resident, and you must stay in the job for a certain amount of time.

The Distance Test:
This is the most crucial test – it's often referred to as the 50-mile test: Your new job must be at least 50 miles further from your old home, than your old job location was from your old home. For example, if you previously lived 30 miles from your old job, your new job should be at least 80 miles from your old home to qualify.

The Test of Time:
To ensure that your move is job-related, you must begin your job at least 12 months after you move. The second test is that you need to maintain full time employment with your new employer for at least 39 weeks within the first 12 months after moving. (However, note that you do not need to work at the same employer for all 39 weeks, and this period does not have to be consecutive.)

How to Deduct Moving Expenses

To deduct these expenses, keep detailed receipts that show the amount you paid to move your household possessions (whether with a professional mover or a self-service move), storage fees, insurance costs, utility setups, auto transport expenses and certain travel and hotel expenses when you move. For more information about the rule, check out IRS Publication 521, Moving Expenses.

Be sure you talk with your tax professional so you're absolutely clear on the rules, and your eligibility to take the deduction.

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