Hosting an exchange student can be an enlightening experience. Both you and the student get the opportunity to learn about a different culture. If the exchange student qualifies, you can even claim a deduction for some of your costs as a charitable contribution.
Qualifying Exchange Students
To qualify according to Internal Revenue Service guidelines, the exchange student must live in your home as part of a program run by a qualifying organization as part of an educational program. In addition, the student can't be related to you. He can be enrolled in any program up to 12th grade at any school in the country.
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Limitations on Benefits
You're allowed to deduct up to $50 in expenses per month that the exchange student lives with you. However, you're not allowed to claim the student as a dependent. In addition, if you participate in a mutual exchange program where your child lives with another family in exchange for you hosting, you can't claim any deduction at all.