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How to deduct moving expenses?

Moving to a new home can be fun and costly. From the cost of hiring a professional moving company Texas or renting a van, before closing the cost of buying a home, moving accounts are raising. The good news is that if you move residences to start a new job, you can deduct moving expenses.
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Well, at least some of them
The IRS and some state governments allow taxpayers to take a deduction of expenses if their course meets certain criteria. States that allow deduct moving expenses have their own criteria for doing so. You can check the income tax form in your state to see if a government deduction is available to you.

Qualification to deduct moving expenses to your federal income

In order to offset the deduction of federal income tax expenses, the IRS states that your step must meet three requirements:
  1. It should closely relate to the beginning of work. You can only apply for deducting moving expenses for one year from the moment you start work. This means that if you do not get close to work during the first 12 months of work, you will lose the opportunity to deduct moving expenses.
  2. Your new job would add at least 50 miles to you if you stay in your old home. For example, if your old job required you to move only 5 miles from your old home to your previous job, your transition to a new job should be at least 55 miles from your previous place of residence.
  3. After you move, you must work full time in your new job for at least 39 weeks in the first 12 months of work. If you are self-employed, you must work at least 78 weeks full time during the first 24 months of your new job.

Notable exceptions

Woman pointing up
As with most tax rules, there are exceptions. Here are three big ones.

Military personnel

If you are a member of the US military, and your turn was caused by a military order and a constant change of station, you do not need to meet all the requirements. You can easily deduct your moving expenses.


If you are retiring to the United States after working abroad, you do not need to meet the time requirements. Your former place of work and your former home must have been outside the United States. If you already live in the United States, you retire, then move to another part of the US state and remain in retirement, you cannot claim a deduction for expenses.


If you are a spouse or dependent on someone who worked outside the United States, and that person dies, you can usually deduct the costs of moving if you live with that person, and then go to the United States within six months after death.

What could you deduct?

If you meet the requirements, you can deduct some expenses related to your movement, but not all. The IRS states that you can claim a deduction for reasonable expenses related to moving your household and personal items, as well as expenses related to traveling to your new home. Eligible costs may include:
  • Transportation for yourself and your family members during travel
  • Accommodation during your travel
  • Packaging and delivery of your household goods

Here is what you cannot deduct:

  • The cost of food while driving
  • Any purchase price of your new home
  • Cost of selling an old house or terminating a lease
  • Any moving expenses that your new employer will pay you for

What you will need to claim a deduction?

If you are claiming a deduction for expenses, you will need documentation to declare it. The IRS recommends saving receipts, bills, canceled checks, credit card applications and run journals. As a rule, it is a good idea to adhere to any documents that confirm your moving expenses if a question arises after filing a tax return.

What to do?

Of course, a claim for any type of tax deduction may require the filing of additional tax forms. In addition to filing your federal income tax refund form (for example, 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ), you will also need to fill out form 3903 "Moving Expenses". There are free online tax collection services. They support form 3903 and can walk you through the process of filling out federal and state income tax returns. The free online tax collection service uses a series of questions about your finances and situations that will help you step by step in this process, including defining deductions that you may qualify for, for example, transfer costs.

How much can you claim?

IRS Publication 521 does not set a limit in US dollars for deductible transportation costs. However, even if your moving expenses meet the criteria for subtraction, it is still advisable to adhere to all the documentation related to your movement.
Suitcase with money
Especially if you deduct moving expenses in a significant amount

Bottom line

If you moved to work in 2018, you can claim a deduction on your 2018 tax return. Payoffs can help reduce your taxable income and help reduce your tax liabilities, allowing you to deduct moving expenses on your relocation. That way you can save money on a move. But, before you file a claim, make sure that you meet all the requirements. Of course, it is not enough just to say that you meet everything. You need to have a written proof for all of them. But, you can easily settle that with your employer. They will give you all the papers you need, you just have to ask for them.


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