How To Write Off Moving Expenses

By Dawn Allcot | November 10, 2011 AAA

Did you know that many moving expenses are tax deductible? If you meet specific criteria outlined in "5 Situations Where You Can Write Off Moving Expenses," you can deduct nearly every expense related to moving.

TUTORIAL: Personal Income Tax Guide

In order to claim deductions accurately, keep careful records. You should include receipts for packing and moving costs, gas and toll receipts, and mileage records for your car. This checklist will help you make sure you don't forget any deductible moving expenses.

Travel-Related Expenses

  • Gas and tolls for your car if you drive to your new home location
  • Oil and other fluids, along with general maintenance for the car, incurred prior to or as a result of the move
  • You can deduct the standard mileage deduction of 16.5 cents per mile
  • Costs of a rental truck or van in a do-it-yourself move
  • Hotels or lodging on your travel route
  • Lodging expenses near your former home within one day of your move
  • Cost of plane tickets if you're flying to your own home, including any baggage expenses incurred
  • Costs to transport your car to your new home
  • Costs to transport pets to your new home (whether by air or car)

Household Goods

  • The costs of packing materials for your household goods, including protective wrap, boxes and tape
  • The cost of movers if you've hired a moving company
  • Moving insurance
  • Costs to move items from a third location to your new home, up to the amount it would have cost to move them from your home.
  • Storage and insurance costs for household goods and personal effects for any period of 30 consecutive days after they are moved from your old home and before they are delivered to your new home
  • Any costs associated with connecting or disconnecting utilities as a result of the move

Non-Deductible Moving Expenses
According to the Internal Revenue Service, you cannot deduct the following moving expenses:

  • Gas and tolls or mileage for excursions you make that take you off the most direct route to your new location
  • Hotel expenses incurred as a result of detours or stop-overs
  • Meals related to the travel or the move
  • The cost of moving furniture purchased specifically for your new home (i.e., delivery costs for furniture delivered straight to your new home)
  • Expenses reimbursed by your employer as part of a relocation package
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