How to Save Money on Your Move

Everyone wants to save money. Here is some advice on how to go about that.

You can save money by selling items you no longer need. Be sure to take advantage of any tax deductions you may be eligible for. Trimming your costs by doing some of the work yourself is another option as far as packing and preparing appliances is concerned. However, for safety purposes, only the driver and crew are permitted to load and unload your belongings. While they appreciate the thought, please do not offer to help.

Hold a Moving Sale

You won’t want to pay extra to move items you don’t need whether it’s two blocks away or long distance. So why not make some money from those items by holding a moving sale? Here are a few suggestions to get you started.


1. Complete an inventory of items to be moved. Make sure items are clean and neat looking. This will help you get more money for them.2. Determine items to be sold and make a list.

3. Combine your sale with neighbors or friends, if possible. Multi-family sales attract more buyers. Avoid holidays or conflicts with other community activities.

4. Advertise your sale days, hours and location in the classifieds, neighborhood newsletter or newspaper, etc.. Give a substitute rain date, in case it rains. List popular items to attract more customers.

5. Ask permission to post signs at work, church, grocery stores and other local businesses. Tell friends.

6. Notfy your neighbors. Send e-mails.

SETTING UP – The Day Before Your Sale

1. Make sure you have:

• Inventory Sheet • Markers • Tags/Labels • Cash box

• Change • Sacks/Newspapers • Table/Chair • Calculator

• Prices • Signs

2. List sale items on an Inventory Sheet. Keep track of items sold.

3. Price and label all items using stickers available from your American Red Ball agent. If yours is a multi-family sale, code each item to the owner so credits can be easily tracked.

4. Group similar items together, i.e. clothing, toys, appliances, etc. Encourage children to donate older toys. Let them keep that money for new toys.

5. Separate inexpensive items from more costly ones. Establish areas such as “Under $1.00,” “Under $5.00,” “Free with purchase of $5.00 or more,” etc.

6. Post signs at major intersections, with directions. Don’t forget to go back and remove them after the sale. Post signs at laundromats, groceries, etc., where permitted.

7. Hang clothing and have other items neatly arranged on tables. Avoid placing items on the ground. They will become soiled and people prefer to shop from tables rather than bending down to see items.


1. Provide adequate parking. (Put your car in the garage or ask a neighbor if you may park your car in their drive.)

2. Have a cashbox and plenty of change. Give a receipt.

3. Be available to assist customers, take money, and answer questions.

4. If checks are accepted, ask for driver’s license number, address and phone number.

5. Offer a free cup of coffee or lemonade.

6. Reduce prices of items not selling; at noon cut prices by 25%, then continue to discount as the day goes along.

7. Donate leftover items to charity. Request a receipt for taxes.

Take Advantage of Tax Deductions

CHECK WITH THE IRS OR YOUR TAX ADVISOR, but according to the Internal Revenue Service, you may be able to deduct your allowable moving expenses if your move is closely related, both in time and in place, to the start of work at a new or changed job location. You also must meet the distance test and the time test. The following information applies to moves within the United States. Note: Military persons should see Members of the Armed Forces in Publication 521, Moving Expenses, for special rules that apply to them.

Closely related in time.

You can generally consider moving expenses incurred within one year from the date you first reported to work at the new location as closely related in time to the start of work. It is not necessary that you arrange to work before moving to a new location, as long as you actually do go to work.

If you do not move within one year, you ordinarily cannot deduct the expenses unless you can show that circumstances existed that prevented the move within that time.

Closely related in place.

You can generally consider your move closely related in place to the start of work at your new job location if the distance from your new home to the new job location is not more than the distance from your former home to the new job location. A move that does not meet this requirement may qualify if you can show that:

  1. A condition of employment requires you to live at your new home, or
  2. You will spend less time or money commuting from your new home to your new job.

Distance Test

Your move will meet the distance test if your new main job location is at least 50 miles farther from your former home than your old main job location was from your former home, or if you are a new entrant in the job market, at least 50 miles from the old residence. For example, if your old main job was 3 miles from your former home, your new main job must be at least 53 miles from that former home.

The distance between a job location and your home is the shortest of the more commonly traveled routes between them. The distance test considers only the location of your former home. It does not take into account the location of your new home.

Time Test

You will need to have worked full time as an employee for at least 39 weeks in the 1st 12 months after you arrived in the new area.

A Qualified Move

If you qualify according to IRS specifications, you can deduct the reasonable expenses of:

  1. Moving your household goods and personal effects (including up to 30 consecutive days of in-transit storage expenses), and
  2. Traveling (including lodging but not meals) to your new home.

You do not have to itemize deductions to deduct moving expenses. Complete and attach Form 3903, Moving Expenses, to Form 1040.

This information is current as of 5/30/06. Be sure to make sure these rules still apply at

Your move is a qualified move. You can deduct the reasonable expenses of:

  1. Moving your household goods and personal effects (including up to 30 consecutive days of in-transit storage expenses), and
  2. Traveling (including lodging but not meals) to your new home.

You do not have to itemize deductions to deduct moving expenses. Complete and attach Form 3903, Moving Expenses to Form 1040.

The information above was current as of 5/30/06. Be sure to check at or with your tax advisor for current eligibility and regulations.