As spring cleaning commences across the nation, remember that donating items you might be inclined to trash may not only provide a treasure to another consumer, but donating qualified items through local charities could also bump up your charitable tax deduction next April.
According to Charity Navigator, the nation's largest and most-utilized evaluator of charities, generous donors looking to donate non cash items to a worthy cause should take the following steps to maximize the impact of noncash contributions.
Step 1: Determine whether or not the items you wish to donate are useful.
Most charities can only make use of items that are new, unused, or nearly new. If you think that the items you wish to donate may be of use to someone else proceed to..
Step 2: Consider selling your items and donating the proceeds to charity.
By donating cash you allow charities greater flexibility in spending the money so that it reaches the people or animals that need it most. You also eliminate the for-profit middleman that can take a big cut of the money intended for charity.
And by selling the items yourself, you know the exact value of the donation you can report to the IRS..
Whether or not you decide to sell your items and donate the cash, or you still think your items may be of use to a charity in need, proceed to Step 3 to find the right charity to accept your generous support.
Charity Navigator recommends you start locally to avoid transportation costs that can lower the impact of your donation. You can use Charity Navigator's database to find a charity in your local area that might be interested in donated goods within a set radius from your zip code.
Once you see a few efficient charities that you think may be interested in your donated goods you can use contact information on their ratings page to discuss how to arrange your donation.
Published with permission from RISMedia.