‘Tis the Season for Tax Breaks: How Giving Can Lower Your Taxes & 3 Worthy Charities

The holiday season is upon us! Glittery gifts and shiny new toys are fun, but let’s not forget the true spirit of the holidays: love, giving, and charity. While giving to charity is good in itself, it can also provide significant tax breaks, but you’ve got to take action before December 31st.

Donations to qualified charities are tax-deductible. That means giving is even more affordable than you think. If, for example, you’re within the 25% tax bracket, the true cost of a $100 donation is only $75! The beautiful thing is that the more money you make, the cheaper it is to be charitable. 

Here are 3 quick tips to keep in mind about tax-deductible donations.

1. Contributions are deductible the year they’re made, not paid. If you charge your credit card with a donation on December 31, the amount will be deductible for that year, even if you don’t pay it off until January.

2. Be sure to document the donation. For donations of $250 or more, you need to have written confirmation from the charity. For anything less, you’ll still need a record in case of an audit.

3. Confirm that the charity qualifies. While most charities are tax-deductible, many are not. For example, foreign charities or organizations that spend too much on advertising don’t qualify. Be sure to do your homework, or simply donate to one of our favorite tax-deductible charities below!

1. The Breast Cancer Research Foundation

What they do: Did you know 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer? On the frontlines of advancing research towards prevention and a cure, BCRF is the force behind the popular “Shop Pink, Save Lives” initiative.

Where your money goes: A model foundation, 91 cents of every dollar BCRF spends is directed towards breast cancer research and awareness programs. Uniquely, BCRF separates money toward research and awareness, so you know exactly how your funds are being spent.

How to donate: Donate now at bcrfcure.org.

2. The Humane Society

What they do: One of the country’s largest animal protection organizations, the Human Society keeps our furry friends safe by providing animal rescue services, advocating for stronger laws, and investigating cases of animal cruelty.

Where your money goes: Your donation will help to save animals, shut down puppy mills, and stop barbaric dog-fighting rings. Just $100 is enough to provide complete vaccinations for four stray cats.

How to donate: Make a one-time gift or a monthly donation at humanesociety.org

3. Food & Water Watch

What they do: Dedicated to making sure the two things we can’t live without are safe and sustainable, the Food & Water Watch is a major player in the movement against hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which may pose a danger to drinking water.

Where your money goes: Your donation will go to a multitude of initiatives supporting safe water, sustainable food, and our natural resources. From now until December 31st, your donation will be tripled thanks to a matching gift!

How to donate: Triple your donation now at foodandwaterwatch.org

 

Write that check, pocket that tax donation, and know that the good karma will come back to you tenfold. Happy holidays!

Author Gregory Lewis

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