Six Tips for Year-End Giving

At the Community Foundation, we can help make your year-end giving easy and full of joy. A trusted center for giving for over 40 years, we’re proud to be a place where charitable giving becomes local, personal, and meaningful.

We can help you think strategically about how you give and how to make our community a better place. We work to ensure that your donations make the greatest impact on the causes you care about while maximizing your tax advantages. Even with the increased standard deduction, there are still tax-wise ways you can give to your favorite causes.

1. Consider a gift of appreciated stock or mutual funds.

If you have stocks or other publicly traded securities that are worth more than what you paid for them, consider using these for your charitable giving this year. Appreciated stock and mutual funds can offer a more cost-efficient deduction, based on current fair market value, not your cost basis. The Foundation can accept marketable securities of any kind. We recommend initiating year-end mutual fund gifts by November 1 and stock gifts by December 20.

Download stock transfer instructions

2. Bunch multiple years’ gifts into a Donor-Advised Fund.

With the increased standard deduction ($13,850 for individuals, $27,700 for couples for 2023), it may be difficult for some people to receive a tax benefit from charitable giving every year. One solution? Bunch multiple years worth of donations into a gift to a Donor-Advised Fund at the Community Foundation. You'll get the full tax deduction now, while spreading out grants to your favorite charities over time, and benefiting from the larger standard deduction in those later years. We can set up a Donor-Advised Fund for you in one meeting.

Learn more about Donor-Advised Funds

3. Recycle your dollars for good, with a gift to our revolving loan fund for nonprofits.

Our Community Investment Revolving Fund helps nonprofits solve social challenges on key issues in our community like housing, sustainable agriculture, and entrepreneurship by providing them with low-interest loans. When paid back, these local dollars get recycled to fund new initiatives into the future. Join us and other donors in making these loans possible.

4. Use your required IRA distribution for giving, skip the taxes.

If you are age 70½ or older, you can transfer up to $100,000 from your traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA) directly to a charity. If you are 73 or older, the transfer counts towards your Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) and allows you to avoid paying income tax on the distribution, while supporting your favorite charity or any fund at the Community Foundation that is not a Donor-Advised Fund. These tax-free rollovers can benefit any public charity, you may direct qualified charitable distributions to any of our non-donor-advised funds, or we can help you set up a new fund that benefits an interest area of your choice, a specific nonprofit, or greatest needs grantmaking. This year we recommend using your RMD to support the Greatest Needs Fund, Friends of the Foundation Fund, Rise Together Fund for Racial Equity, or the Santa Cruz County Scholarship Endowment Fund.

Download our Charitable IRA Rollover Guide

5. Give in someone's honor.

Donate in lieu of a holiday gift. Whether it's to your own Donor-Advised Fund or one of our other funds, be sure your gift is postmarked or submitted online by 11:59 p.m. on Dec. 31.

6. Let the Community Foundation do the legwork.

Working with the Community Foundation gives you access to our extensive knowledge of the local nonprofit community and the broad charitable needs of our region—so you can stay informed about the organizations you support and the effect your giving will have on the future of our community. We’re happy to discuss any options for accomplishing your charitable giving.

Our Donor Services Director, Hilary Bryant, is available to chat.

Call or email Hilary