The Advise Us Foundation blogs about donor-advised funds and other planned strategies and techniques including charitable remainder trusts and charitable lead trusts. We offer this charitable giving information as a resource for donors, professionals, and charities that provide and plan gifts to non-profit organizations.

Advise Us: A Catalyst for Sustaining Philanthropy and Mission

Catalyst:  (noun)  A person or thing that precipitates an event. The Advise Us Foundation is a nonprofit working as a catalyst to philanthropic giving for individuals and fellow nonprofits. As an organization that advances philanthropy, Advise Us is helping to change the world we live in by catalyzing donors’ intentions into support of non-profits’ important missions. From its earliest days, Advise Us has offered donor-advised fund giving to individuals to help them plan their philanthropic donations and legacies while at the same time take advantage of tax incentives that maximize philanthropic impact. Individuals are able to create or add to a charitable fund based on when it is a good time for them to give.  They, in turn, can grant money out from their fund as donations to nonprofit organizations at any time they wish.  Through the inspired generosity of those taking advantage of this charitable giving tool, the Advise Us Foundation has granted gifts to numerous organizations from the smallest start-ups to large educational institutions. Advise Us is also a catalyst for other charitable organizations by enabling them to create and use expanded giving options for their donors. The staff and volunteers of Advise Us have collectively decades of fundraising experience with a concentration on planned giving.  Working in partnership with organizations to offer hands-on tactical advise and services affords these organizations the ability to increase their fundraising capabilities thereby increasing their mission-based impact for generations to come. The Advise Us Foundation also offers other means of direct support to the charitable community through educational seminars.  With a special focus on small and medium-sized charities, our free educational...

The Ripple Effects of a Planned Giving Heart

Nonprofits do an excellent job of promoting how planned gifts, and their donors, achieve amazing results in saving and changing the lives of the recipients of philanthropic gifting. While planned gifts are often associated with tax planning, they still come with a story. There is a nature behind planned givers better seen as givers who are thoughtful about how their lives can touch the lives of others through their acts.

To itemize or not itemize? Either way a question with great answers for charity

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 was the first major legislative change to the tax code since 1986. While many of its’ changes left how the charitable deduction worked unchanged, the doubling of the standard deduction is predicted to reduce the percentage of taxpayers who itemize from 30% to 10% which effectively removes two-thirds of taxpayers who could have used the charitable deduction in 2017.  This reduction has made many taxpayers in 2018 to ask the question of whether to itemize or not itemize their deductions.  The good news is that there are still great taxwise ways to give to charity, either way, you answer that question. Idea to consider if you don’t itemize- gift from your IRA If you are 70 ½, you are able to make a charitable contribution, up to $100,000, to a public charity of your IRA and not incur the distribution as taxable income.  You are not able to deduct the amount as a charitable contribution (but you would not be able to anyway as you are not itemizing your deductions) nor can you contribute it to a donor advised or a private foundation.  Please know that these are just the basic details and you will need to discuss this technique with your advisor before implementing.  And good minds differon the value of this strategy.  Idea to consider if you do itemize- bunching a gift to a donor advised fund If you are going to itemize your deductions this year, and might not do so next year, then you should consider a donor advised fund(DAF).  With a DAF, you are able to claim...

Support Your Favorite Nonprofit in a Particularly Meaningful Way!

A little planning can go a long way.  Did you know that making a planned gift will not only help ensure the health of the organizations you support long into the future, but can also provide benefits to you?

What exactly is planned giving?  And, how can you benefit from it?

In short, a planned gift is the type of gift that requires a little more thought than simply writing a check or processing a credit card.  It’s a gift, as the name implies, that you’ve planned for – you’ve given consideration about from where and how the gift will be received.