Perhaps you have an unsightly old car taking up precious space in your driveway. Its rusty and you can’t count on it to get your from here to there anymore. You’ve moved on and are driving a new vehicle. But what about the fate of your old car?
You may want to consider donating your old car. You can donate if the car is broken down, too old, was involved in an accident or you just want to reduce the amount you pay in taxes. There are many charitable organizations that will gladly accept your used car, even one that isn’t running.
If the car in in good enough condition it can be used as a program car, being donated directly to someone in need of transportation. However, more often than not, cars are sold at auction and the money made from the sale of the car is then used by the charity to help people in need. Your donation may help provide food, clothing and shelter for someone who is struggling to make ends meet.
The process of donating a used car could not be any easier, especially with the use of a home computer. All you have to do is:
Contact the charity of your choice. If you don’t have a charity you are passionate about, there are hundreds of organizations at your fingertips that would make good use of your car donation.
Fill out the donation form on the organizations’ web site. The process only takes a few moments.
Decide what is the fair market value of your car. This is the price you would get if you sold the car. It is the amount you will later use as your tax deduction.
Set up a pick-up time with the towing company. Most charities can arrange the pick-up within three days.
Have the car, keys and title ready to go. Even if you don’t have the title you should contact the charity because other arrangements can usually be made.
The charitable organization will mail you a receipt and important tax papers needed for your income tax preparation.
It’s important to choose a charity that will donate all or most of the money to those in need. A small sample of honorable charities that accept car donation include:
American Diabetes Association
Cancer Research Institute
American Red Cross
American Lung Association
Special Kids Fund
American Kidney Fund
Most charities are able to pick up cars anywhere in the Continental US. Once you fill out their online form, they will handle all of the paperwork for you and arrange for a towing company to handle the pick-up and provide them with your information.
What do you get out of it? Aside from cleaning up your environment by getting rid of your vehicle, you can use your receipt for the donation for a $500 tax deduction. You qualify for the deduction if your total deduction is more than the standard deduction you would get for your spouse and children.
You will also experience a great sense of joy and pride that by giving, you are able to help children and families who are less fortunate. It’s a win-win situation.