The fall fundraising season is here and we are blessed to live in a wonderfully generous community. Personally, we have heard NFL Hall of Famer Charles Haley share his story at the C.A.R.E. breakfast, boot scooted at Cattle Baron’s Ball, worked on the Moody Family YMCA annual/capital campaigns, supported the HPISD Scots, the ORLS Wildcats and our church.
We do believe that we are called to be generous, but in reality, it can be overwhelming. Saying yes to one and no to others isn’t always easy. Our advice is to create a Giving Plan and leverage the tax code while you’re at it. Here are a few Giving Plan guidelines:
- Have a discussion around the causes or movements that are important you and your family (or business).
- Involve your children (or employees) to create a tradition of giving. They don’t necessarily need to know specific dollar amounts, but let them be involved in deciding where some of the money goes and encourage volunteer work to compliment the financial gift.
- Decide whether you would you like to make a large impact on fewer organizations or a smaller impact on many.
- Determine whether the money should stay in the Park Cities, reach beyond or both.
- Evaluate the organization’s track record of financial responsibility, accountability and transparency before giving. Check out www.Guidestar.org or www.CharityNavigator.org for leadership and financial information.
- Set aside a percentage of income to give away each year. 10% is a great place to start and some are called to give much more. If that’s not possible, begin with lower percentage. Don’t get hung up on pre or post tax income. Just pick one and go with it.
- Once you have your Giving Plan you will be able to say Yes or No to requests with heart and conviction
Finally, be smart about how you give. Look into vehicles like Trusts or Donor Advised Funds for gifting to qualified 501(c)(3) charities. Donor advised funds or DAFs are charitable giving accounts that you can contribute to now (receiving an immediate tax deduction) and decide later to recommend grants to a qualified charity. Until then, the money in your fund can be invested and grow tax-free. That allows you time to involve family members (or employees) in discussion and grant-making that supports your Giving Plan. Above all, enjoy your giving journey and feel good about the impact that you and your family are having on the causes that are important to you!
Dax Seale, CFP®, CLU®, AAMS®
Amber Seale, CFP®, CLU®, CDFA™, CPA®*
Dax and Amber Seale are CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals and financial advisors with Seale Wealth Management of Raymond James.
Raymond James & Associates, Inc., member New York Stock Exchange/SIPC. Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and federally registered CFP (with flame design) in the U.S.
CFP® | Certified Financial Planner™ |
Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., owns the certification marks above, which it awards to individuals who successfully complete initial and ongoing certification requirements.
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