If you plan on making clothing donations this year, you will want to keep track of those donations so you can take advantage of the tax deductions. To make the most of donating clothes to charity, you'll want to download a clothing valuation guide and keep good records of your donations throughout the year.
Where to Donate Clothing
You can donate clothing to any religious, secular and government-sponsored clothing charities. Donating to Goodwill is easy and simple, since most cities have a Goodwill store with a round-the-clock donation receptacle outside. Some organizations such as VA Vets and the Kidney Foundation will pick up donations from your curbside. Go online and search for "clothing donations" to find a donation center near you.
How to Value Clothing Donations
You will need to get a receipt for your donation. Write on the receipt exactly what you donated, such as three pairs of women's pants, all in good condition, five pairs of children's shoes, two in good condition and three in excellent condition. Next, you'll need to download the Salvation Army's valuation guide (this is the same guide accepted by the IRS) and estimate the value of each item donated, writing down the item, the condition of the item and the estimated value according to the Salvation Army guide. Add these numbers up for each receipt from charitable organizations throughout the year. Make sure you get a signature on the receipt for any donations valued over $250.
How to Account for Donations on Tax Forms
When you file your taxes, you will need to file an IRS Form 8283, itemizing your deductions. Make sure all your donations are recorded appropriately on the form. Keep copies of your receipts, the valuation guide used and the details of your donations in case you get audited.
Every year I hope and expect to get a large tax refund when March comes around. We usually use our refund for a much-needed home improvement or a fun, family vacation. I do my best all year to keep track of paperwork, receipts, medical premiums and bills, and of course, my charitable donations.
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