For How Long Is an ATM Machine Depreciated?

by Jennifer VanBaren ; Updated July 27, 2017
ATMs are typically depreciated for five years.

The ATM Industry Association (ATMIA) is an organization responsible for regulating ATMs. According to the ATMIA. the average depreciation for an ATM is between five and seven years.


An ATM is tangible property that is depreciable, according to the IRS. The year an ATM comes into service is the first year in which it is depreciated. Section 179 of the IRS code allows an equipment owner to depreciate up to $19,500 a year for an ATM. No specific guidelines have been set as to how many years an ATM must be depreciated.


When ATMs are depreciated, four aspects are considered: technological obsolescence, regulatory requirements of country, length of ATM contract and cost structures. These four aspects also include the machine’s useful life expectancy, timing of replacements and relevant tax provisions.

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ATMIS conducted a survey of 19 countries and reported that an average of five to seven years is the approximate depreciation length on ATMs. A few of the countries involved in this survey are Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. It was determined that depreciation periods of 10 to 15 years are excessive, and the lowest acceptable amount is three years. Depreciation periods since the year 2000 have slowly decreased, making the average depreciation period, according to the ATMIA, five years.

About the Author

Jennifer VanBaren started her professional online writing career in 2010. She taught college-level accounting, math and business classes for five years. Her writing highlights include publishing articles about music, business, gardening and home organization. She holds a Bachelor of Science in accounting and finance from St. Joseph's College in Rensselaer, Ind.

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