Donating a Car to Goodwill: Charities and Their Detailed Operation


You may be asking yourself what is the benefit of donating a car to Goodwill. You probably wonder what the advantage for you is from the first place. But you also need to remember that doing social work and good things for other will never harm anyone. Of course, you also need to understand the general procedures of donating a car and how to choose the right charity to support your cause. Being kind and generous is okay, but being stupid and too trusting is another thing.

Donating a Car to Goodwill: Why the Charity?

When compared to other charities, Goodwill already has their positive acknowledgment and reputation. It is not like the other shady charities that are operating out there. They claim to be a part of a social organization but then their system or their procedure isn’t known. When you take part in donating a car to Goodwill, feel free to ask for the detailed questions. You can ask them questions like how many percentage of the proceeds they channel to the charity, how many administrative cost there will be, and such thing. It is a guarantee that they will be able to answer your questions – and they will also be willing to explain the details procedures to you.

So, what should you do before you continue with donating a car to Goodwill?

  • Be sure to do your research before you make the donation. Feel free to ask them about the procedures they usually implement.
  • Don’t donate if you aren’t sure. It is okay to ask them questions pertaining the procedures and the method of donation. Know what you want to ask. Make a list of the questions you want to know about the details of the charity. Be completely sure that you are giving away your ride to the right charity
  • Find the status of the charity. If you are still doubtful about Goodwill’s status, you have the internet to make the search easier. In most cases, when you want to donate your car while getting the tax break perk, you want to choose a charity with 501 (c)(3) status, NOT the 501 (c)(4) status. The 501 (c)(4) status is related to political parties and the government so they won’t be able to offer the tax break perk. Of course, you can always donate to them – but don’t expect them to offer the tax deduction offer.
  • Be aware of charities offering tax break. You need to realize that not all of the charities can work together with the IRS and not all of them will be able to offer the tax deduction benefit.
  • Walk away when you make a contact with a charity and they claim that they can offer the tax break. However, when you check it, they don’t have the 501 (c)(3) status or even the 501 (c)(4) status. They won’t be able to deliver their promises and you can only imagine what they will do with the proceeds.
  • Always fill in the ownership transfer or the title transfer. If a charity asks you to keep the space blank, walk away. They definitely don’t have any good intention. Keep in mind that when you don’t do this, the car will stay listed under your name. in the event the car is used for something bad or criminal, or the one using the car is getting speeding tickets, it is you who will be held responsible – not the current owner. So, always, always and always fill in the space and NEVER leave it blank.

Donating a Car to Goodwill: The Usages of the Vehicle

So, what will Goodwill do to the car? It depends on the condition of the car, really? When you are donating a car to Goodwill, the charity will definitely check, assess, and review the car, right? Based on the condition of the ride, there are several options that they will make.

  • If the car is still in a perfect condition, it is possible that they will either sell it or use it for their fleet, provided that you are donating the right type of car. If you are donating a station wagon or a lorry, it is possible that they will use it for their transportation needs. If they don’t have enough fleet, it is most likely that they will add it into their existing fleet. But if they decide to sell it, anyway, then it is up to them. It is also possible that the charity is giving it away for the needy people who need the transportation. It is most likely that they can buy the car in a very low cost – or even free – to help them with their mobility.
  • If the car is still in a good condition but there are several minors or damages, it is possible that they will repair the damages and then sell it. The repair is done to improve the value of the ride so it will sell at a higher price. It is also possible that the car is given away for those who need it.
  • If the car is not running but the damages are quite minor, it is possible that they will repair the damages first before selling it out
  • If the car is still running but it is quite old and not in a very good condition – there may be major damages or the cost will be too high if repairs are done – it is possible that it will be either sold or stripped for parts.
  • If the car is not running, it is a wreck, and it will be too expensive to make the repairs, it would be best if it is stripped for parts.

When you have conveyed your intention to donate, the charity should be able to determine the condition – and what they will do with it. The process will be easier if you can describe it from the beginning. Not many people know this but sending the picture of your car during this initial step can make the process easier and also faster. You can also ask them the detailed procedures when you are donating a car to Goodwill.

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