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charitable giving

Charitable Giving

Philanthropy That Looks at the Big Picture

Children and youth. Animals. Education and scholarships. Arts and culture. Community betterment. Global needs. Whether you’ve identified favorite causes or are only beginning to consider how you might give back, your charitable interests can be a crucial part of the wealth management process.

Your desire to make a difference affects the overall picture of your finances.

A Windward Wealth advisor will talk with  you about the many types of philanthropy that may relieve your tax burden. Lasting sources of altruistic funding can have even greater impact with long-range planning.

If charitable giving appeals to you and your values, a Windward Wealth advisor can help you evaluate giving opportunities and plan income for charitable contribution. Together you will determine how charitable giving will affect the total picture of your wealth.

Windward-Wealth-Strategies-Charitable-Giving-Graphic3-Step Guide for Charitable Giving

Congratulations on exploring charitable giving. Philanthropy is an exciting way to share your values with the world and to build a legacy that outlives you.

  1. As you plan charitable giving, it’s important to determine what you want to achieve. Look at your giving history to discover patterns, and review if you accomplished prior charitable goals. This will influence your giving strategy. Do you want your impact to be felt at the individual or community level (or somewhere in between)? Do you want to be anonymous or hands on? These answers will help you and your Windward advisor set giving goals.
  2. Second, together you, your family and your advisor can write a giving mission statement. You can use this philosophy to choose charitable giving opportunities, and you advisor can help you develop a funding plan that works for your unfolding wealth story.
  3. Determining where to give is a personal decision. Windward encourages client partners to review websites, read news coverage of nonprofit activity and talk to friends, family and other donors who share similar interests. Your advisor can help you review financial information, including annual reports and budgets, from organizations that interest you.

Types of Charitable Giving

The vehicles available for charitable giving are almost as diverse as the causes that benefit from philanthropy. A Windward advisor can help you understand the benefits and drawbacks of each type of charitable donation.

Some giving vehicles are better for giving during your lifetime. Other giving vehicles can generate lifetime income. You and an advisor will explore:

  • Donor-advised funds: Contribute to a public charity that manages donations on your behalf.
  • Endowments and foundations: Set aside money in an endowment that earns revenue for a charity. Or, create a private foundation and hone in on deeply personal causes.
  • Pooled income funds: Donate securities and cash to help maintain a pooled income fund, which is established by a public charity. Investments generate dividends for benefactors and the charity.
  • Charitable remainder trusts (CRTs): Provide an annual distribution to a noncharitable beneficiary, with the remainder interest going to at least one charitable beneficiary.
  • Charitable gift annuities: Transfer assets to a charity in exchange for tax benefits and lifetime income.
  • Charitable lead trusts (CLTs): Donate a portion of a trust to charity to reduce taxable income. Then, after a specified time period, the remainder of the trust goes to other, noncharitable beneficiaries.

At Windward, we strive to balance your giving goals with donation types that most benefit your complete wealth management goals.

Charitable Giving and Taxes

Charitable giving helps you support issues that matter to you. Philanthropy is its own reward, but there are tax incentives for your generosity as well. Your wealth management team can help you understand the tax benefits available for your charitable giving.

Donations to qualified charitable organizations are tax deductible. The actual cost of a charitable gift decreases as your income tax bracket increases. This reduction is thanks to tax savings.

EXAMPLE: The actual cost of a $100 donation for an individual in the 39.6 percent tax bracket is $61.40. Higher income taxes yield lower actual giving costs.

When you donate appreciated properties, such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds, you can deduct their full fair market value. The appreciation never is reported as income, which also is a tax benefit to you.

In general, deduction limits only come into play when you donate more than 20 percent of your adjusted gross income to charity. (A Windward advisor will help you structure your deductions for maximum benefits.) The rules for giving and taxes can get complicated. Your advisor can help with compliance and charitable giving decisions that serve you and the organizations you care about.

Balanced Charitable Giving

Our goal is to help you balance giving to charity and preserving your wealth. Charitable giving is deeply personal, and it requires high attention to tax incentives and your unique financial situation. In addition to assisting with creation of a private or family foundation, we work closely with community foundations in our area, including:

  • Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region
  • Fond du Lac Area Foundation
  • Greater Green Bay Community Foundation
  • Greater Milwaukee Foundation
  • Oshkosh Area Community Foundation

You’ve worked hard to grow your wealth. When you want to share your accomplishments to benefit a cause or community you care about, we can help match your philanthropic goals with a charitable giving plan completes the picture of your wealth.

Call (920) 230-2215 for a complimentary consultation with a Windward Wealth advisor.

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