If you’ve heard there’s no longer a tax deduction for moving expenses, that’s not entirely true. There are still tax breaks you can take advantage of.
Active Duty Military Members Tax Deduction for Moving Expenses
If you’re an active duty military member, you may qualify to deduct your moving expenses related to a permanent change of station. This includes:
- Moving between duty posts
- Moving from your home to your first duty post
- Moving from your final duty post back home (within 1 year of separating)
Eligible expenses include transporting your belongings, storage, and travel expenses such as lodging. You can hire movers or move yourself.
One thing that gets excluded is meal expenses since the government says you’d need to eat anyway.
Note that you can only deduct expenses that aren’t reimbursed or paid for by the government. Those reimbursements are usually already tax-free.
General Moving Expense Deduction Returns in 2026
If you thought moving expenses were always tax deductible, you’re remembering the tax law before 2018.
For 2018 through 2025, there is no general moving expense tax deduction. It’s through 2025 because the tax law that eliminated the moving expense tax deduction was only temporary.
If Congress doesn’t do anything, moving expenses will once again be deductible in 2026. In order to qualify, the move will need to be related to full-time employment and be at least 50 miles away from your current home.
Tax Breaks for Buying a Home
There are a number of tax breaks for buying a home. These include deducting mortgage interest and deducting your property taxes as an itemized deduction.
Many states also have things like homestead exemptions or property tax credits that lower your property tax bill for your primary residence. I’ve heard from people who moved and then missed out on these tax breaks the first year in their new home because they didn’t apply in time.
As soon as you buy a new home, visit your local property tax collector’s office and ask about any tax breaks you’re eligible for. They’re usually elected officials and happy to help you.
If you wait and miss a deadline even by a few days, you might need to pay higher taxes for a year until you can get your tax status changed for the following year.
Self-Employed Moving Expense Tax Deductions
If you’re self-employed, you still don’t get to deduct your personal moving expenses.
The IRS also generally won’t let your business reimburse you for your moving expenses and write off the reimbursement. Even though corporations often reimburse employees for moving expenses, those reimbursements are actually taxable.
What you can do is write off your business moving expenses as regular business expenses. Moving a business is generally an ordinary and necessary business expense since businesses move for various reasons all of the time.
The clearest way to claim business moving expenses would be to pack and ship your business property separately from your personal property.
It’s probably also OK to take a partial deduction for your moving truck or movers if you move everything together AND can document how much of the load was business property. For example, if your business property takes up 10% of the truck, you could deduct 10% of the cost. Take pictures of your things in the truck and save your receipts in case the IRS questions you.
It’s probably not a good idea to try to deduct a portion of your lodging and travel expenses. Since you’d still be paying 100% of the cost if you weren’t bringing your business with you, the IRS would likely consider those costs 100% personal and not partially deductible as business expenses.
If you’re looking for more information to save on taxes before or after a move, see Filing Taxes After Moving to a New State and Breaking California Residency. You may also want to check out Why You Shouldn’t Move to Florida.