The holidays are a season of giving and for most charities this is their primary fundraising period for the year. With so many worthy causes, how can you create a responsible giving strategy for your financial plan? Paul Fain, President of Asset Planning Corporation, discusses some financially stable ways to give this holiday season.
PAUL, DURING THE HOLIDAYS MOST OF US RECEIVE A LARGE NUMBER OF SOLICITATIONS FOR CHARITABLE DONATIONS — BY TELEPHONE, OR MAIL, OR EVEN DOOR TO DOOR — HOW DO YOU MANAGE IT?
- Have a plan: it will help you screen the solicitations by informing them of your existing plan.
- Pick a few charities: I think the best strategy is to pick a few charities that are meaningful to you and your family. For example, homelessness, alzhiemers, or environmental issues.
- Have an impact: A few larger donations can be more impactful than many small donations.
IS THERE A BEST WAY TO DETERMINE HOW MUCH TO GIVE?
No science really. Many churchgoers strive to give 10% of their earnings. But really, giving is as much about intent as amount. Generally, do two things first in your monthly budget:
- save and
- give, then live on the rest.
Be intentional about giving, create a line item in your budget for charitable giving. Maybe two line items such a recurring donations (such as to a church) and annual giving.
AND IT IS IMPORTANT TO CHECK OUT A CHARITY.
- Do your homework: charitynavigator.com. For example, confirm non—profit status 501(c)3.
- Keep good tax records: Ask for a receipt or keep a copy of your check. Most charities will mail a donation receipt after year-end for your tax return. Tax-deductible IF you itemized deductions.
FAST MARKET FACT: CHARITABLE GIVING
• Average household gift: $2,520
• Total 2018: $427 Billion
QUESTION FOR OUR MONEYMAN?
Want to learn more about giving responsibly? Do you have other general questions about financial planning or investing? Send your questions to our Knoxville Certified financial planner Paul Fain or directly to Paul@assetplanningcorp.com!