Daily Deduction: Job Moving Expenses


If you moved for work this year, shake up your tax return by deducting your unreimbursed moving expenses.

Not every employer covers the cost of a new or existing employee’s move.  If your company falls into this category, or if you’re self-employed, make the Internal Revenue Service feel your pain.  As long as your unreimbursed costs are reasonable, they are eligible for deduction.

The deduction covers more than just your U-Haul truck rental (Stock Quote: UHAL) or the money that you paid to the moving company.  Other costs, like boxes and bubble wrap, are deductible too.  If you moved your family by car, you can claim the price of gas and oil, not to mention the hotel where you stayed along the way.  Did you take an airplane?  Your airfare is more than just a one-way ticket to Phoenix; it’s also your ticket to lower taxes. (Just don’t try to deduct the cost of any side trips along the way. The IRS will never believe that you moved from Pittsburgh to Buffalo via sunny Southern California.)  Finally, don’t forget to deduct your storage expenses and the cost of insuring your goods.   

Not everyone can claim the moving expense deduction.  You must have relocated within the last year for work.  In most cases, your new job also must be at least 50 miles further away than your old job. So if your last employer was a mile from your old home, your moving expenses will only be deductible if your new employer is at least 51 miles from your old home. 

This means that people who moved from one side of Berlin Heights to the other are out of luck.  But if you moved from Cleveland to Columbus, deduct away. 

Landing a job in a new city last year was smooth on your part, but if the cost of your relocation was simply too much for your employer to bear, get moving on your Form 1040. A deduction is just around the corner.

Last, but not least, are you still making mortgage payments on your old home?  Check back with us for tax tips on how to make your mortgage interest work for you.

Be sure to check out the complete archive of Daily Deductions!

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