How Will a Big Move Across the Country Affect My Taxes?

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The article below is up to date based on the latest tax laws. It is accurate for your 2017 taxes, which you will file by the April 2018 deadline. Learn more about tax reform here.

I was still in college when I first got married, and only had more year left, so we got a small apartment near campus. While we loved living right across the street from the beach, we knew once I graduated a move was going to happen. We got a great deal on our tiny spot, but if we wanted to eventually get a house, we would have a hard time affording in the area. With the exception of a few industries (neither one we were in), wages weren’t exactly great, so we decided to look for opportunities in the region that would be a better fit for us.

You might be in the same boat as us if you’re thinking about a potential, move or just made one. However, did you know that a move can also be beneficial for you come tax time? Here’s how.

Ways Your Move Can Help Your Taxes

If you’re moving cross country, you already meet the first criteria for the IRS – which is moving at least 50 miles from your original location. The second one? You have to move because of a new job. To count this move’s deductible expenses, the IRS states you need to work at the job full-time for about 10 months.

If you meet those two qualifications, you may be able to take advantage of some tax benefits.

Deductions for Moving

  • Storage costs: You can deduct your storage expenses for up to 30 days.
  • Moving expenses: All that work with packing and moving your belongings to your new place can be deducted.
  • Connecting utilities: When you get to your new place, you have to get electricity and other utilities set up, which may be tax deductible. However, you can’t count your registration fee for your cars.
  • Insure your belongings: We all want to make sure our things get there safely, and this is another perk you may be able to take advantage of when filing.
  • Your hotel and travel expenses: If you take a road trip to your new home, you can deduct your hotel and gas to get over there, however, your meals don’t count.

What’s also great about deductions is how they can reduce your taxable income. The last thing to remember with getting these deductions is that your employer can’t previously have paid or reimbursed you for these expenses. As always, make sure you keep all those receipts for your records. (Pro tip: Take a picture or scan a copy, since the ink can sometimes fade.)

Thoughts on Big Moves?

I’d love to hear from you – how many of you moved this year? How many of you are planning on moving soon? What’s your main reason for it?

However, remember that no matter your situation, TurboTax will ask you simple questions about you and give you the tax deductions and credit you’re eligible for based on your answers. If you have questions while doing your taxes you can connect to the TurboTax Live expansive network of credentialed CPAs and EAs live via one-way video to get your tax questions answered. You can even have your tax return reviewed, signed, and filed!

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