Planning for Generosity in 2024

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For many people, the end of the year is the time for giving. It may be that the holiday season inspires a spirit of generosity for some. Others make a more calculated decision to maximize their charitable contributions for the year as part of their year-end tax strategy.

Whatever the case, as we approach the end of 2023 and begin looking toward the future year, now is a good time to consider your overall giving strategy and plan for how you want to close out this year and start strong in the next.

Instead of allowing the giving season to take you by surprise, we recommend taking the time to slow down and plan for generosity the same as you plan the rest of your financial strategy. Giving with greater intention allows your dollar to stretch further, maximizes the benefits for you and your recipients, and alleviates some of the stress that can come from uncertainty and last-minute decision-making.

Give from the Heart…

“Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” – 2 Corinthians 9:7

As financial advisors, we avoid being prescriptive about charitable giving. Choosing how to share abundance, and with which causes and organizations, is very personal. It’s not our place to tell you where and how to give. However, we can offer some insight from the perspective of experience if you’re uncertain where to start.

What makes you cry? What pain or injustice in the world affects you? What change do you wish to make in the world? Once you find a cause that matters and resonates with your heart, you can use that passion to guide you. Donating to a cause that truly matters makes giving more rewarding, and you’ll likely make a greater impact.

You can use a site like Charity Navigator to identify causes and research organizations to ensure they align with your values, operate with integrity, and will put your donation to good use.

…But Give with a Plan

Giving from the heart does not mean giving without a plan. We’ve found that our clients give more joyfully and are able to make a bigger impact when they give intentionally. Once you have a cause or organization in mind as a recipient of your generosity, we can work with you to develop a financial plan that maximizes the impact of that giving both for you and your recipient.

Some things we’ll help you consider:

  • How much of your income and assets should be allocated toward charity, and how to incorporate those amounts into your budget.
  • How to leverage charitable contributions to minimize your tax burden, allowing you to apply more of your resources toward what matters to you.
  • Where you can find matching gift opportunities and other strategies for stretching the value of your donations throughout the year.

We can also help you set up and manage more complex forms of giving, such as setting up qualified charitable distributions from a retirement fund, arranging for the donation of appreciated stocks, and gifting closely held assets like real estate through donor advised funds.

For more information, or to begin crafting your strategy for generosity, reach out to our financial planners toll-free at 888-815-5100.

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