Why You Should Donate Your Car To Charity
If you’re like most people, you probably just read the title twice to make sure you were seeing it correctly. Donating your car to a charity seems a little over-generous, right? It’s one thing to send cash or volunteer your free time to help a good cause, but why in the world would you donate your only means of transportation? Take a deep breath and relax. No one is asking you to give up your car. We’re suggesting when you get a new car that you may be better of donating your old car to a charity that accepts car donations. Most people sell their old car, collect a few thousand dollars, and put that towards your new vehicle. Generally, however, it doesn’t work this easily.
According to multiple surveys, the number one reason people buy a new car is because their old one continuously has problems. When you go to sell your car to a dealer, they’re going to see all of the repairs and work it needs. If it needs extensive work before you could even consider selling it and you don’t have the funds to repair it, donating your car is going to be a much better option for you. If your car needs improvements, the charity will make them and list the improvements on the tax receipts. You won’t have to fix up problems with your car beforehand. On top of that, you will helping a good cause by donating your vehicle. Most charities will be able to appraise your car or simply offer a receipt that lists the Kelley Blue Book, NADA or Edmunds private party value as long as it’s under $5,000. If it’s over $5,000, then you’ll need an independent appraiser, but that is really not difficult to set up. On top of helping people, you can also receive a sizable charitable donation receipt to take off of your taxes at the end of the year. Of course, anytime you are working with the IRS there are going to stipulations. You kind find out what hurdles you’ll have to jump through on the IRS website.
Even if your vehicle is in decent shape, donating your car still may be a good option, or at least save you a major headache. If you try selling it at a dealership, you won’t receive an offer that’s anywhere close to your asking price. Chances are you won’t be asking for the total worth of it anyway, but it’s still a slap in the face when a dealer offers you a quarter of the number you would like to hear. So now your options basically include putting it on Craiglist or eBay, or go the classic method and chalking up “For Sale” on the windshield and leaving it by the road. If you go with Craigslist or eBay, you have to deal with all the flakes, crazies, and low-ballers who are looking to snatch up a good deal. If you leave it by the road, it might get towed, it might get broken into, or you simply won’t get enough interest. When it’s all said and done, it may be a year or more before you sell it. When you donate a car, all you need to do is call an organization. They take care of it all from there. There’s no going back and forth with people trying to rip you off or meeting complete strangers in dark parking lots so they can give it a test drive. Donating cars is quick and painless.
It’s no secret that the proceeds from your car donation can help a charitable organization do incredible work and help potentially hundreds of people in need, but there still a few things you need to look out for. With good people who run great charities come awful people who will try to scam you. In order to find the right charity to donate your car to, you have to do the research. Ask how much the charity receives from your donation. If your charity returns anything less than 70% of the gross proceeds back to the charity, you’re not donating as much as you could be back to the charity. Make sure the money is going where it supposed to; to important missions and causes that truly make the world a better place. The easiest to find out what charities accept car donations is using Car Donation Wizard. Not only do they only work with reputable organizations, but they will break it down and show you exactly where the money from charity goes to. For example, you can donate a car to charities that help children, aid in animal rescue and well-being, end hunger, aid in religious outreach and missions, support the arts, benefit the military and veterans, support public radio and television, aid in medical research and disease treatment, and many more.