You're preparing to downsize your home and deal with your "Stuff". You can't take it with you. Your children don't want it. The Auctioneer doesn't want it. And you're having a difficult time finding a buyer. What do you do?
An increasing number of people are donating items to a non-profit rather than wasting any more time trying to sell it. As a result, in my opinion we are currently in the "Golden Age of Non-Profit Donations". Donations are at an all-time high and thrift stores have been the beneficiary of this increase in generosity.
Need proof? In our area Good Stuff Thrift has grown to four locations, Impact Thrift has three locations, NOVA just built a larger building, and Holy Redeemer Thrift is adding space, all to accommodate the growing volume of donations. Add in Habitat for Humanity, Salvation Army, Viet Nam Vets, Goodwill, and a host of other similar groups, that requires a whole lot of donations to keep them all in business.
WHAT'S IT WORTH? As donations have increased, most non-profits have become more selective in what they will accept. Most will provide you with a receipt that does not contain a donation value. That's your responsibility. What should you claim? Our advice would be to make a fair estimation of value and take some digital images for documentation. Donations under $500 require nominal documentation. But as your declared donation value increases, documentation requirements increase and, if donating items of substantial value, you may want to consult your attorney or accountant for guidance.
Mike Ivankovich is an Auctioneer, Appraiser, Home Downsizing Expert, and host of the "What's It Worth? Ask Mike the Appraiser" Radio Show that airs live in the Philadelphia PA area on Friday mornings from 9-10 AM EST on WBCB 1490 AM and on the Internet at: www.WBCB1490.com His show also airs in Denver CO on KEZW Cruisin 1430 AM on Saturdays from 3-4 PM MST & Sundays from 11 AM-12 Noon MST, and on the Internet at: www.Cruisin1430.com
You can also visit: www.AskMikeTheAppraiser.com