The Best Tips To Maximize Your Car Donation Tax Deduction

Car Donation Wizard wants donors to know that donating a car to a nonprofit organization not only helps that organization fund worthwhile research and humanitarian efforts, but you also may be eligible to claim a tax deduction for your charitable contribution.

Here are some car donation tax deduction tips we’ve put together:

  1. Make sure the nonprofit is eligible to receive tax deductible contributions. Organizations such as  501(c)(3) qualified nonprofits are able to give you a tax receipt for your vehicle donation. Visit IRS.gov to search for registered charities. Car Donation Wizard only works with esteemed, 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations.
  2. Ask if you will get a formal tax receipt from the charity for your car donation. If the total deduction you are claiming for a donated car is $250 or more, you need paper proof of your donation. Car Donation Wizard mails a tax receipt for your records following the sale of your vehicle.
  3. Know that despite what you might find on Kelly Blue Book, the IRS will only allow a deduction for the fair market value of the car. This can be found on the tax receipt mailed to you from Car Donation Wizard.
  4. If your car is worth more than $500, you, the donor, must complete Section A of IRS Form 8283 and attach it to your yearly tax return.
  5. If your car is worth $5,000 or more, an independent appraisal is necessary. You must also fill out Section B of IRS Form 8283. You may consider taking pictures of the car and saving receipts for new tires or other upgrades to verify its value.
  6. As a safety, consult your tax adviser or the IRS for more information about how you can claim charitable deductions. The IRS can answer your tax questions and can provide tax forms, publications, and other reading materials for further assistance. IRS materials are accessible through the Internet at www.irs.gov and at IRS walk-in offices in many areas across the country.

Share

Car donations drive our mission’s success

By Krysta Morgenthaler, Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley vice president of development and communications

Honk your horn if you love Habitat!

Here in the San Francisco Bay Area, we’re honking our horns to thank our generous donors for making Habitat East Bay/Silicon Valley the top affiliate in the nation for revenue generated through car donations. Vehicle donors in our service area area have generously contributed more than $600,000 through car donations. That’s enough to build a dozen Habitat homes or provide material for 60 Habitat roofs or buy 20 million nails.

The Habitat for Humanity Cars for Homes Program is an easy way for donors to make a huge impact on the local Habitat mission in their surrounding communities. In 2010, our affiliate worked with Cars for Homes to launch the Partnership Project, which provided a $100,000 challenge grant to match all car donations dollar for dollar. Donors from across the area responded generously by exceeding the $100,000 goal in just nine months!

The vehicle donations helped fund the construction of a home for Habitat East Bay/Silicon Valley’s 250th family served, Teebe and Ande Nerayo. The donations raised through the Partnership Project also funded the renovation of two homes as part of our affiliate’s Neighborhood Stabilization Program. Car donations at Habitat East Bay/Silicon Valley continue to play a major role in the success of our mission by funding, on average, two homes per year.

The next time you have a junker sitting in your driveway or would rather put your old car to work than put more work into it, think about the impact your car could have on a local family in your community.

Find out more about Cars for Homes today!

Read More

Share

Get A 2012 Tax Deduction For Your Car Donation!

While it might be too late to donate a car for and receive a 2011 tax deduction; it’s the perfect time to donate a vehicle and get a 2012 charitable tax deduction! When you donate a car, van, truck, hybrid or any other vehicle to your favorite charity, we’ll send you a receipt to use during tax time. Not only do the proceeds of your vehicle go towards an amazing cause but your charitable contribution is tax deductible.

Choose your charity now!

Want to learn more? Visit or Tax Tips page

Need to speak with a customer service member about you tax deduction? Call us at 877-957-2277 and we’re happy to help!

Donated to Car Talk – a 1997 Subaru Legacy                              

donate a car to car talk

Donated to Habitat for Humanity – a 1987 Volkswagen Golf

car donation to habitat for humanity

Share

Car Donation Spotlight: 1990 Buick Reatta

Written By: Sam Andrews

The 1988-1991 Buick Reatta was the company’s first attempt at an exclusive compact 2-door sports car since the 1940s.

car donation buick

The Reatta will be remembered alongside similar vehicles offered around the same time by General Motors like the Cadillac Allante (which shared a modified platform with the Reatta) and Chrysler’s Maserati TC. They all had one goal: to capture a piece of the market segment that normally didn’t buy American cars, people who appreciated European flavored design and/or engineering but were willing to pay a substantial price for it in an otherwise thoroughly American car.

Buick car donation

Also similar to those other automaker’s efforts was the Reatta’s unusual manufacturing process. The Reatta was actually hand-assembled by workers at special stations. When the station had completed their part, the vehicle was moved by robots to the next station, where another part was hand-completed, then moved to the next station and so on and so forth. This intricate, detailed-oriented process was unheard of for the world’s largest automaker in their ninth decade of mass producing automobiles.

inside of buick car donation

The results of such labor are moderately impressive. The Reatta’s styling was certainly fresh and new, at least when compared to the rest of Buick’s lineup at the time. It features a smooth, simple body that tapers to a slightly snubbed nose, pop-up headlights, blackened a-pillars, a single-unit taillight strip, and a large curved rear window, which must have been great for visibility.

Inside, the interior featured bolstered leather seats, driver-oriented dashboard and a very interesting all-digital touch-screen instrument cluster and center console, complete with a digital speedometer. All major functions were controlled from the touch-screen. I’ve never seen one of these before and can’t confirm if it was an industry first, but the boldness of placing such an interface in company that normally sells to older and mature customers used to simplistic technology is as quizzical as it is inspiring. The touch screen was only available from 1988-1989 before it was dropped in 1990.

car donation

The Reatta was one of several attempts by various automakers in the late 1980s to replicate the feel of classic ‘60s British convertibles like Triumph and MG but with modern technology and driving mannerisms. Examples include the Lotus M100 Elan and the ’89-‘94 Mercury Capri. Probably the best example was immensely popular and successful Mazda Miata, which debuted in February 1989. Some would consider the Reatta the least of those attempts, but I think it’s notable for being the first. The Reatta actually predated the Miata by a year, so one must give credit to Buick’s intuition. They even have similar sounding names. But the Reatta debuted as a coupe only, a misstep in a market that was ripe for small convertibles, as the Miata would prove. By the time they added a convertible in 1990, the Miata, which only came as a convertible, had already taken off and the Reatta was just a year away from discontinuation.

Could the Reatta have been the hit the Miata was? Perhaps. The Reatta was nice looking and mostly well designed. The arrival of the convertible made it even more alluring. But there were more negatives than positive. The hi-tech touch-screen was in conflict with the small, sporty, back-to-basics nature that most people conjure when they think of small coupes, not to mention alienating to older buyers. The engine was Buick’s basic 6-cylinder with a max of 170 horsepower and was not, like other Buicks of the era, turbocharged. The only transmission ever available in a Reatta was an automatic, a big turn off to young people and enthusiasts looking for something fun to drive. Lastly, the charming but antiquated hand-made assembly made manufacturing costly and time consuming.

Buick planned to sell around 20,000 each year. But by 1991, only 21,751 examples had been produced over about 4 years.

Right now the Reatta stands a good chance of becoming a future classic collector car. The good intentions of the original product, combined with the classic convertible body style and relatively low production figures make the vehicles candidates for restoration or show pieces. Will they become extremely valuable? Probably not. But as time goes on, and more and more are taken off the road and parted out, the Reatta stands a better chance than other cars from the era at garnering some interest, and maybe even increasing value after it bottoms out.

Our ’90 Reatta coupe was generously donated to WBUR and is painted red and features a light grey leather interior, sunroof, alloy wheels and only 64,408 miles on the odometer.

donate a car to charity

 

Share