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Giving Well: End-of-year charitable planning

charitable giving

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We are coming to the end of the year and it’s time to give serious thought to donating to your favorite charities.They will love you and you have the opportunity to have a huge impact. Here are just a few ways to make this happen.

Think about which charities you wish to give to. 

During the months of November and December, we are deluged with donation letters. You can donate small amounts to many charities, or you can focus on just a few of them and have a stronger impact.

The most popular way to donate in the United States is simply to write a check or use your credit card for an outright donation, even receiving airline points or money back. In some cases, you will be able to deduct up to 50% of your adjusted gross income from your taxes. Make sure you receive a letter from the 501(c)(3) organization or this could be nullified. 

teal sedan park beside street during daytime

Think of the types of assets you’d like to donate.

You can donate assets including real estate and cars. There are limitations with automobiles and they must be running, for the most part, to receive a tax deduction. However, with real estate, you have options. 

person writing on white paper

Consider setting up a Trust.

That way, you can use the options of donating rental property or a second home. For example, you can donate the current income from the property, but retain the property for your children. You can retain the rental income but donate the property at a future date. Options exist!

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Think of donating highly appreciated stock. 

We have experienced great appreciation since 2008 and charities love donated stock.  Most of the time they can turn the stock into cash with no tax implications and you get the write-off at the current market value. 

Young student making presentation to classmates and teacher

Be part of charitable fundraising events. 

Although you cannot write off the full value of the merchandise or trips purchased, you can get some terrific deals and the charity will still benefit.

person in orange long sleeve shirt writing on white paper

Use an ILIT, or an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust.

Life insurance can be a terrific way to donate huge proceeds upon death without having a negative impact on the next generation. As a matter of fact, this could be a great way to have a building named after you. Your name could live on in perpetuity. 

A group of activists posing to a picture at an event 

Time to set up a Foundation.

This could be a terrific way to truly impact the next generation. Most foundations are required to give away 5% of their revenue each year to charity and you could name one of your children as the President of this foundation, and they would most probably be invited to galas throughout the year. A way to hobnob with the rich and famous.

Rutgers University, Newark Campus, New Jersey, United States

Rutgers University, my alma mater. Go Scarlet Raiders!

Set up grants for tuition for schools. 

Colleges and private schools are always looking for people who want to help their members. You can even be anonymous if desired.

Donor Advised Funds graphic

Image courtesy of Butte Humane Society.

Set up a Donor Advised Fund. 

You could receive a tax deduction today for your large donation, control it 100%, and decide which charity should receive the proceeds at a future date.

Just the fact that you are considering being charitable is a wonderful thing. I wish you the very best.

For more information, reach out to me anytime. I’m here to help. 

Call or email me anytime.

All my best,

Elliot Kallen


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