Sometimes I am asked by people how they can help our cause without disturbing their finances. Surprisingly, there are ways to accomplish that goal. Each situation is different, so consulting your tax advisor is a good idea. You may wish to consider these ideas:
• Designating a charity as a beneficiary in your will or trust is a simple way to commit to a cause you believe in, without affecting your cash flow during your lifetime. Additionally, it’s easy to revoke this type of gift, if your situation or goals change.
• Naming a charity as the beneficiary of an IRA or other retirement plan, financial account, annuity or unneeded life insurance policy is another easy way to help while you continue to benefit from these assets during your lifetime.
• If you own low-interest assets like bank Cds, you may donate them to charity and receive a Charitable Gift Annuity with an annual payment to you, often with a higher interest rate.
• Real estate you no longer need or wish to sell may be given to a charity without impacting your cash flow. You may also benefit from capital gains tax avoidance, while receiving a tax deduction for the gift.
• If you own your home and wish to remain living there, you can transfer your home to a charity, while retaining the right to use the home during your lifetime. You may even enjoy the added benefit of an income tax deduction while you live in your home!