Donating to charity doesn’t always involve writing a check. In fact, of the 70% of Americans who donate to charity every year, many donate clothes and other items — without spending any money at all. Here are a few charitable donations that are free or extremely low cost:
Tax-Deductible Clothing Donation
That’s right. You can donate old clothes you weren’t going to wear anyway to charity and get paid to do it. (Or, more specifically, you can write it off on your taxes.) Many large charities that accept donations will post approximate deductions online. A coat, for example, may be worth about $7 to $40, a shirt $2 to $12, and boots $6 to $18. The exact value may depend on the item of clothing, its condition, and the charity you donate it to. Remember to ask for a receipt — and keep it in your records — to enjoy the tax break. As an added bonus, many clothing donations also benefit the environment. While there are currently up to 12 million tons of clothes and fabric waste generated in the U.S. each year, up to 90% of clothing that ends up in the trash could have been donated instead.
Opt For Something A Bit More Personal
Clothing donations are great, but there are plenty of ways for people who do not have clothing and household items to spare to give back. And almost all of them involve taking just a few minutes of your day to brighten someone else’s. There are several charities that collect letters for deployed soldiers. Americans can also send soldiers birthday and holiday cards, or even send cards or letters to kids in children’s hospitals.
Giving back doesn’t have to mean writing a big ol’ check. You can actually save money on your taxes with clothing donations, and other, inexpensive acts — like writing letters or filling out birthday and holiday cards — cost next to nothing.