If you want to expand your efforts to help other people, it’s natural to up your charitable giving. While it’s entirely possible to give more money or resources on an impulse, people give more and feel better about their giving if it’s planned out beforehand. If you want some tips on how to plan your charitable giving, here is a list of considerations.
Establish a Budget
Most responsible plans start with establishing a budget. A giving budget, rather than limiting how much you give, empowers you to donate more than you would typically. This is because you know you won’t need the amount you set aside for living expenses. Plan out a monthly budget so you don’t end up facing down a huge year-long dollar amount that scares you away from giving.
Give Recurring Donations
The added benefit of budgeting is knowing how much you can give on a recurring basis. Recurring donations help simplify the donation process by linking your payment method directly with a trusted charity. Beyond this benefit, though, charities prefer recurring donations because they help them better predict their income. Too often, the work of a charitable organization hinges on donors’ significant end-of-year giving. Donate on a recurring basis to afford them financial stability and fill in some gaps during sparser months.
Pick the Right Charity
When planning your charitable giving, you also want to make sure your money goes to an organization with the credibility and capability to put your resources to good use. There are many facets to choosing a quality charity partner. One simple tip is to ask them about how they measure their projects’ success. If they don’t have measurable goals, they may not be a good partner.
Understand Your Tax Plan
Moreover, you should talk through how you’ll handle your taxes before you allot money for donations. Familiarize yourself specifically with how charitable donation tax deduction works. Essentially, if your giving plus other eligible deductions won’t exceed your standard deduction, then you won’t need to track each donation amount. If you will exceed the $12,200 single-payer or $24,400 married filing jointly standard deduction, then you should track each donation to maximize your tax return. For larger donations, there are rules about obtaining donation verification from your charity and obtaining an appraisal for, particularly high-value gifts. If you have further questions, consider talking through your situation with a tax expert from your home in Atlanta or any other city in the United States.