The most frequent ways that Americans give to charities are through volunteering and through donations of used clothing and household items.
Vehicle donations are increasingly popular as well, though many people may not be aware of how the programs work. Typically, Americans can dispose of most any unwanted vehicle -- cars, motorhomes, even motorcycles. At the same time, they can benefit their favorties charities.
Most charities make it is easy and convenient. Vehicle donations also let Americans give while getting something back: a tax write-off.
Charities see the benefits, and have simplified the system for giving. Often donors can find application forms over the Internet to get the process started.
Large charities often will hire fundraisers to collect the cars and resell them for the proceeds. The charities then split the money with the fundraising company. By hiring fundraisers, charities often can collect vehicles from anywhere in the nation. If the vehicle doesn't run, the charity will tow it.
Donors, meanwhile, can use the vehicle donation as a deduction at tax time, as long as they are willing to itemize the gift on their tax forms, and keep records of the transfer, which they will need to copy for the IRS.
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|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|