How to Distribute Your Assets to Charities

how to distribute your items to charity

The moving process can be a difficult, not just due to logistical issues, but emotional ones as well. For people who have built up a lifetime of memories in a home, downsizing prior to a move can mean saying goodbye to tangible reminders of those memories. One way that a lot of people grapple with these issues while moving is donating some of their unneeded items to charity. Not only is this a great way to give items you don’t need some sort of use, you can help others in the process. However, there are still some logistical things you want to keep in mind.

For one thing, you want to make sure you choose wisely when it comes to what charities you decide to support. The good news is that it’s a bit easier to do this when donating goods versus donating money, but it still pays to be aware. Exactly where will your items end up going? How will they be used? If you find a representative of a charity is evasive on questions like these, you may be reluctant to work with them. It’s also a good idea to make sure they have their formal nonprofit status.

Aside from this, you also want to figure out the mechanics of how you will get items to the charity. This is especially important when it comes to larger items like furniture or antiques. Some charities have services come to your home and take the items off of your hands, but this isn’t a guarantee. If these services aren’t available, you may need to recruit a friend to help move the items to be donated. Sometimes, there are items you can’t donate, but still want to unload. There may be recycling options available in your area.

One last piece that we should talk about is tax deductions. Some people like to donate to use the value of the items as a write off on their next tax return. You can still do this, but it’s not as easy as it used to be. Again, you need to make sure the place you are donating to is registered as a non-profit. However, you will also need to put together a paper trail verifying what items you donated, as well as their value. Also, you only get this benefit if you itemize your deductions, vs. taking the standard deduction. You should get the advice of a CPA or Income Tax Attorney to confirm tax deduction issues beofre you make your decisions to donate.

Interested in donating some of your items prior to a move, but don’t have the time to track down different charities and organize drop offs? It may be a good idea to work with a third-party company to help distribute some of the work. At Friend Of The Family, we can provide a suite of services to help make the process of moving preparation less difficult and stressful. This includes helping families, individuals, and seniors with organization as well as asset distribution to take a lot of the legwork and difficult decisions out of a move.