By: Barry G. Allen- President & CEO
Now is a very good time for giving. With Thanksgiving right around the corner it’s a time to express gratitude to the Lord for all the ways He has blessed our lives, and giving financial gifts to advance His Kingdom is a worthy way to express that gratitude. The Advent season, which follows the Thanksgiving season, is another good time for giving. What better reason to give than “the reason for the season.” And, finally, the end of the calendar year is a good time for giving because you may be able to enjoy some tax savings, which could facilitate a larger gift(s) than you anticipated giving.
The most common asset used for charitable giving is cash in the form of cash, a check or an electronic transfer. If you itemize your tax deductions, gifts of cash may be used to eliminate federal income tax on up to half of your adjusted gross income (AGI). You also may have state income tax savings.
Since the financial markets have behaved rather well this year, you may own some stocks, bonds or mutual fund shares that are worth more than they cost you. Now could be a good time to gift those assets instead of cash because such gifts generally are deductible for income tax purposes at the full market value if you’ve owned them more than one year. Such gifts can be used to offset tax on up to 30% of your AGI, and an added benefit is no capital gain tax is owed because the gift is not a sale. On the other hand, if you own securities worth less than they cost, consider selling them and using the proceeds to make your charitable gift(s). You may be able to deduct the loss on the sale as well as the amount of the gift. Unused deductions in the year of the gift can carry forward for five future years.
To the extent you need assistance in what asset to give, please give us the privilege of assisting you.
The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.