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Moving Tips: Maximize Your Income Tax Refund by Deducting Moving Expenses

With tax day 2011 looming, everyone’s looking for ways to maximize their return. There are a dizzying number of potential credits and deductions on Form 1040, but very few that are as awesome as this one.

If you’ve moved in the past year and meet a few requirements, deducting your moving expenses is an easy process. You don’t even need to itemize your deductions!

uShip already saves thousands of people money on moving expenses every year. For customers who are relocating for work, many services on our site can be deducted. Surprisingly, this also includes auto and pet transport.

What you can deduct:

  • Transportation, moving, and storage costs associated with moving your household goods and personal effects
  • Any travel expenses associated with your move (including lodging)
  • Cost of connecting or disconnecting utilities 
  • Cost of shipping your car
  • Pet transport expenses
  • Cost of moving your household goods from a place other than your former home (though the amount can’t exceed what it would cost to move it from your former home)

Requirements for Deducting Moving Expenses:

  • Your move must be job-related (you can’t deduct if you’re already retired).
  • Your new job would have increased your commute by more than 50 miles.
  • You must remain full-time employment for a minimum of 39 weeks during the 12 months after your move. If you’re self-employed, the figures are 78 weeks and 24 months, respectively.
  • Your moving expenses can’t be reimbursed by your employer.

For specifics, be sure to read the IRS Article about deducting moving expenses. Diagrams and flowcharts galore. And we’re certainly not experts on this deduction, so if you’re the least bit unsure, consult a tax professional.

If you meet these requirements, simply fill out the short Form 3903 and enter the resulting deduction on line 26 on your 1040. It looks like this: