New tax laws make it more important than ever to have a strong year-end giving strategy to maximize your donor dollars and save you money. Higher standard deductions mean you might not be able to itemize this year, but there are still many ways to be tax-wise.
- Qualified charitable distributions from your IRA. If you’re 70 ½ or older, make a direct distribution to your favorite charity – up to $100,000. This will reduce the amount you’re taxed and qualify toward your annual minimum distribution.
- Give appreciated stock instead of cash. If you normally give an annual cash gift, you could contribute shares worth the same amount, rather than sell them, and you won’t pay capital gains tax. If you do itemize, you get a double tax benefit from donating appreciated stock owned more than a year. You’ll get a deduction of the full value of the shares and avoid being taxed on the gain.
- An outright gift of real estate. Do you have land or a rental property you’ve been thinking about selling? If it’s appreciated in value, transfer ownership to your favorite charity. You get a tax deduction for the fair market value and bypass 100% of the capital gains tax.
- Create an Hope For Three Donor Advised Fund. Need more time to decide which charities you’d like to support before the 2018 tax deadline? Move money into a Donor Advised Fund and receive a tax deduction, then use your account to make grants at your discretion year-round.
December 31st is approaching fast, but if you act quickly you still have time to take advantage of these smart solutions for your money and possibly save taxes and change a life.