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Give It Away: How to Donate Items to Charity

Written by Danielle Travali.

Congratulations! You’ve finally decided to de-clutter your home. That's great! Now, it’s time to consider donating your unwanted items to charity. This is the perfect way to help people in need and free up space in your life. It’s also a good-hearted way to deduct costs from your tax return! We’ll show you how in a few easy steps:

Step 1: Browse your closet. If you see any items you haven’t worn in over a year, it’s time to think about donating them. Make sure whatever you decide to donate is at least in good condition. Nothing with holes or broken zippers. Make sure it’s wearable.

Step 2: Wash, dry and fold all items you’d like to donate, then place in clean trash bags. You may label the bags if you’d like, too, just to help the workers at the charity know what’s inside

Step 3: Go through all your clutter -- books, VHS tapes, DVDs, CDs, and even furniture such as tables, desks, and lamps. Charities can use these items, too.

Step 4: Assess the value of your items. If you want to deduct your donation from your income taxes, you should know how much your donated items are worth. Check out the IRS website for information on how to do this correctly, by clicking here.

Step 5: Choose a trustworthy 501(c)(3) charity to donate to. Goodwill and Salvation Army are two of the more popular charities. A great list of others can be found here.

Step 6: Be sure to receive a tax receipt once you donate your items so you or your accountant can deduct it from your taxes. You can receive this receipt when you drop off your items at the charity of your choice.

Doesn’t it feel good to clean your closets and know you’re helping the needy? Just think how happy someone will feel when they receive that beautiful pair of jeans you just don’t wear anymore!

Danielle Travali, MS
Danielle Travali, MS

Danielle Travali, also known to many as the Web and television personality "Holly Pinafore," is a journalist, entrepreneur, and food & wine enthusiast. She is a certified food coach, stress management coach and fitness trainer who studied mindful eating and food psychology. Danielle also holds a master's degree in Journalism from Quinnipiac Un.. Read more

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