Moving Expenses for New Employees

Effective: Moved to Policy Library from UPM 3.4(5)
Updated/Revised: February 16, 2009
Reviewed and Updated: May 2016
Contact: Procurement Services


This policy provides information about the conditions under which the relocation expenses incurred by new employees may be reimbursed.

Policy Statement

When an employing unit's administration believes it is necessary to attract specific personnel, reimbursement of expenses for packing and moving a new employee's household goods and other personal effects may be authorized from available and approved department funds. Only full-time employees are eligible. Moving expenses also may be authorized for part-time faculty and P&S employees, by specific approval of authorized individuals, defined as president, provost, or respective senior vice president, dean, director, department chair or designee. Specific approval shall be given and witnessed by authorizing signatures on the appropriate document, i.e., purchase requisition, disbursement voucher, etc.

When the decision is made to assist with relocating an employee by paying household moving expenses, a new employee household moving packet should be requested from the Procurement Services. This packet includes information that will assist in the expedient processing of household moving payments. Centrally budgeted university funds are not available for this purpose. The eligibility, limitations, and procedural requirements are as follows:

  • Based upon the university's established travel policies, interview trips for prospective faculty and staff may be reimbursed.

  • After the new employee has accepted employment, travel expenses may be reimbursed for one trip for the employee and spouse/partner for the purpose of arranging housing. At the discretion of the respective senior vice president or the president (or his/her designee), travel expenses for house hunting trips prior to accepting employment, and subsequent house hunting trips, and reimbursement for additional family members (in addition to spouse/partner) may be authorized.¬† Reimbursement of these items constitutes taxable income to the employee.

  • Departments may pay employees' reasonable household moving expenses by reimbursement to an individual or direct payment by the university to a moving firm, as noted below. Hiring departments are free to establish payment limits based on budgetary limitations. Suggested guidelines are available from Procurement Services.

  • Additional costs, associated with moves from two households, will require specific approval of an authorized individual (defined above). Expenses associated with home sale or lease breakage will not be reimbursed.

  • Reimbursement for moving expenses shall not include moving plants or animals, nor shall it include payment of storage fees or costs associated with moving household goods from storage to destination.

  • Reimbursement for the use of rental trucks or trailers may be authorized if complete documentation is presented, which includes receipts for gasoline purchases and truck rental. No reimbursement will be made for the hiring of assistance to help with loading or unloading or personal effects or household goods.

  • Personal travel or temporary living expenses for an individual and his or her immediate family, associated with accepting new employment, may be reimbursed. Such reimbursement is limited, however, to mileage for two vehicles and for travel using the most direct route. Reimbursement of temporary housing expenses, meals and mileage (in excess of IRS limits) constitutes taxable income to the employee.

    Upon submission of full documentation, including copies of all paid bills or invoices from an authorized commercial mover, the employee will be reimbursed. By utilizing a properly approved purchase order, the university's portion of the moving expense may be paid directly to the moving company. The new employee will continue to be responsible for the balance of any charges incurred.

  • The university has established a moving services contract, through a competitive bid process, which offers significant discounts and several additional features to facilitate the moving process. Either the hiring department or the newly hired employee should contact Procurement Services for assistance before contacting moving firms.

  • When not utilizing the moving services contract, the newly hired employee is responsible for obtaining a minimum of two guaranteed "not-to-exceed estimates" from Iowa-based moving companies. These estimates shall be submitted to Procurement Services for review, along with a purchase requisition. A purchase order will be issued to cover the university's portion of the move.