Why Donating your old car, boat, RV or motorcycle benefits you
logo Tigrai Online - Ethiopian Daily News

Many people in the U.S.A don't know the benefits of Donating old car or vehicle to charity

By Melissa L.
Tigrai Online, July 19, 2017

Ethiopians living in the U.S.A can benefit by Donating old cars


Donating a car benefits many people. How many of you have an old car, boat, RV, motorcycle, or trailer sitting around? You don't use it anymore because you upgraded it years ago. Perhaps it doesn't even run anymore. It has become an ugly site on your property and you are tired of looking at it. Maybe the city is even getting after you to get rid of it. You don't want it anymore but you don't have the time or means of doing it. Well, there is a way to get rid of it for free. Someone will come to your house and pick it up at no charge to you. They will take it and either sell it, use it or scrap it depending on the condition of the vehicle. They then use the money they get for it for their charity and you get to claim what they make on it as a tax deduction. This is either a flat $500 or the full amount they sell it for if it is more.

There are some things to be aware of when donating your car. First, there are many organizations out there that advertise and claim to help you donate your car to charity. Most of these are scammers.They take your vehicle fix it and sell it on their used car lot while keeping 50 to 90 percent of the profits for themselves and then giving the rest to the charity of your choice. In the mean time if this car would have been given straight to the charity they would have made 100 percent of the profit themselves.

Keeping this in mind make sure you look around for actual charities and don't be fooled by the middle man. A few websites to find reputable charities are the http://welcome.bbb.org Better Business Bureau BBB You can browse through these, find one you like in your area and give them a call to see if they accept vehicle donations. Next, in order for you to use the donation for a tax deduction you must make sure the charity you are giving to is an IRS-approved 501(3) organization. You can check the http://www.irs.gov IRS website and search for publication 78 to find a list of these. Lastly, make sure you always sign over the title to the vehicle to the charity and never agree to leave it blank. Also inform the DMV that you have transferred the title. In doing this you will avoid the possibility of costly parking tickets and other unwanted violations in your name.


The charity you donate your car to is most likely going to sell your vehicle. Make sure they provide you with a receipt showing the amount they sold it for. You will need this to show the IRS if it is more than $500.00. If the charity keeps the vehicle to do charity work or if it is worth less than $500.00 you can claim the fair market value which can be found at Kelly Blue Book. If the donation is worth more than $500.00 you will have to use IRS form 8283 when filing your taxes. If it is worth more than $5,000.00 you will also have to provide to the IRS an outside appraisal, a receipt from the charity and a copy of the title change.

Some charities that accept car donations are:

  • Habitat for Humanity, Cars for homes helping families in need of decent, affordable shelter. Call (877)277-HFHI(4344) www.habitat.org/carsforhomes
  • National Kidney Foundation, helping to fund education, patient and community services, research and organ donation. http://www.kidney.org/funds/kidneycars/index.cfm
  • The Alzheimer's Association, Where they have been working hard for the last 25 years at finding a cure for Alzheimer's. They also provide reliable information, care and support to families. www.alz.org">www.alz.org
  • Goodwill Industries, providing education, training and career services for people with physical, mental and emotional disabilities and people who are homeless, on welfare or who have a lack of education or work experience. www.goodwill.org
  • Salvation Army, a faith-based organization that provides many community development and ministry services throughout the world. http://www.satruck.com
  • Make a Wish Foundation, grants the wishes of children with life threatening medical conditions. www.wish.org
  • American Cancer Society, making a difference in the lives of people touched by cancer. Called Cars for A Cure funds research, education, advocacy and patient services programs. www.cancer.org
  • Davis Research Foundation, helping people with dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Visit: www.help-kids-read.org or call 1-888-484-5563
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, has Cars for Kids's Sake. Call (800) 710-9145 or visit: www.bbbsa.org

There are many more charities that you can donate car, boat, RV, motorcycle, or trailer so if you have a favorite local charity contact them and ask if they take this type of donation. It is a win win situation, you get rid of your old unwanted car or whatever you have and get some money for it and the charity you chose to donate your car gets some help too.

this article was originaly published on Nov. 20 2008

Opinions published on this site are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Tigrai Online.
©2005-2017 Tigraionline.com All rights reserved.