Wondering if you’re prepared for the upcoming giving season?
The holidays will be here before you know it, and to minimize stress and maximize your gifting abilities, it’s important to keep in mind a few ideas that you may or may not be aware of.
If you’re not sure how your finances match up with your upcoming year-end giving strategy, now is the time to prepare by making your lists and checking them twice. Organization is key to proper gifting this holiday season. Follow the five tips below to maximize your charitable giving strategy this year.
1. Do Your Research
By using sites such as Guidestar or the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance, you can learn more about the groups you’re interested in donating to.
The organizations you’re involved with should also be able to provide registration information, including 501(c)(3) status and tax identification numbers. You may also use the tax-exempt organization search tool available on the IRS website to obtain more specific information about such organizations.
2. Bundle Your Donations
As deductions have increased over the years, you may choose to save money over time and donate every few years as opposed to consecutively each year. By doing this, you may receive itemized deductions that go over the limit one year and take the standard deduction the next.
If you’re interested in accomplishing this, you might consider a donor-advised fund that allows you to make a charitable donation and immediately receive a tax break. Then, your preferred charities will receive grants from the fund over time.1
3. Donate Appreciated Stock
By donating stocks or other appreciated assets, such as artwork or antiques, you might reduce capital gains taxes on investments.2
In particular, high-income earners specifically might consider a non-cash donation because of the tax advantages they may be awarded. Even those who have what they might consider small holdings could benefit by making a donation of appreciated investments this holiday season.
4. Utilize Your IRA
If you’re a retiree over the age of 70½, you might consider transferring money from your IRA to a qualifying charity. These distributions can be a tax-efficient way of meeting any required minimum distribution. Additionally, there’s no need to itemize your deductions to benefit.
Each taxpayer may distribute up to $100,000 annually. This increases to an acceptable $200,000 for married couples if they both have IRAs.3 Although this strategy has existed for some time, it has only recently become a part of the permanent tax code.
5. Monitor and Evaluate Your Portfolio
No matter the size of your seasonal contributions, it’s always important to keep up-to-date knowledge on your portfolio to give properly and confidently. Staying informed through newsletters, annual reports, and CEO updates can be an important factor when it comes to understanding the operations of various organizations.
It’s important to set personal reminders, at least annually, to re-evaluate your financial and personal priorities and update them, if need be. Your interests and priorities are bound to change over time, and so will the causes you choose to support. Being aware of these fluctuations is key, and maintaining a thoughtful attitude is what makes the holidays meaningful.
This content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information, and provided by Twenty Over Ten. It may not be used for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. Please consult legal or tax professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation. The opinions expressed and material provided are for general information, and should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security.