10 Tips For Year-End-Giving
1. Talk to your advisor.
Before making any significant gift to charity, consult with your CPA, attorney or other advisor to understand the impact on your taxes and estate.
2. Consider your income.
Take time to understand your tax liability for the year. Did your unearned income increase? Did you sell any appreciated assets? The answers to these questions may determine how much you want to give by December 31.
3. Review your stocks.
If you’d like to make a year-end charitable gift, consider giving appreciated stock. Selling stock will incur capital gains on the appreciation, but if you gift stock, you will receive a charitable deduction for the current market value of the stock—just as you would with a cash gift. Such gifts are deductible up to 30% of your adjusted gross income and you can carry the deduction forward for up to an additional five years.
4. Give early and complete your gift by December 31.
A gift by check is complete when mailed (postmarked) to the charitable recipient, even if not cashed until the following year. Gifts by credit card are complete when your credit card account is charged. Gifts of stock and real estate are more complex; don’t wait until late December to make these gifts as it may be too late to make the necessary arrangements.
5. Know the organizations you support.
While there are many worthy causes, only donations to qualified 501(c)(3) organizations are tax-deductible. If you give through the Community Foundation, we will document the status of all nonprofits prior to making a gift on your behalf and can help you identify organizations that are qualified to receive your gift.
6. Do you have more than enough?
If you’re receiving taxable income from retirement plan assets or life insurance policies, there are a number of tax-advantaged ways to make these assets work for you and the causes you support. The Charitable IRA Rollover Act, for example, allows donors age 70 ½ or older to donate up to $100,000 from their IRA without counting the distribution as income.
7. Explore employer gift matching programs.
Many companies offer gift matching programs that can increase—even double—the impact of your gift.
8. Give now—decide later.
If you are planning for a charitable tax deduction this year but are undecided about which nonprofits to support, consider opening a donor-advised fund at the The Molly Johnson Foundation. You can claim a deduction for contributions to your fund now even though distributions from the fund might be made in future years. A donor-advised fund can be set up in one meeting with your financial advisor.
9. Know where your money goes.
The Molly Johnson Foundation is ran by volunteers. No one on our staff receives a pay check. Because of this your donation has more impact. You will know exactly what we use your donation for and you become part of our family.
10. Not Sure Yet?
Follow The Molly Johnson Foundation on social media. You will quickly get a sense of what we are all about and what type of things we do.