With the holidays right around the corner, “year-end is a great time to talk to your clients about charitable giving,” says Laughton. Schwab Charitable, a donor-advised fund provider, recommends donations as a way to give back, while also cutting down on taxes.
With all of the recent tax reforms, people may be unsure of how the new tax bill will affect their charitable deductions, suggests Laughton. For those that plan on taking the standard deduction, but have considered itemizing, Schwab Charitable recommends a strategy called “bunching or “concentrated giving.” This means giving a greater amount to charity every few years, itemizing those gifts, and then taking the standard deduction the other years.
“Donor-advised funds are a really good vehicle to use,” says Laughton on the bunching strategy. The endowment-style vehicle allows the donor to give into an account and grant out over time. With lower minimums and higher levels of privacy than a family foundation, the special purpose charitable account makes the process of giving simpler and easier.
To learn more on this topic, head to SchwabCharitable.org.