Five Ways to Maximize Your Year-End Giving

With a bit of planning, you can make a gift that costs you less and can achieve bigger goals!

As year-end 2021 approaches, many of us will pull out our checkbooks and begin to write checks to Nationwide Children's and other organizations that are important to us. With a bit of planning, there may be a better way to make your gift. Consider these five smart ways to maximize your year-end giving that may cost you less and allow you to stretch your giving dollars.

  1. Use long-term appreciated stock rather than cash to make your charitable gift. For donors who itemize, you will receive a charitable income tax deduction for the market value of the stock and you will avoid capital gains on the appreciation. If you do not itemize, you will still avoid capital gains on appreciation of the gifted stock. Call us for stock transfer information at 614-355-5417 and make sure you contact your broker early enough to complete the transaction by December 31, 2021.

  2. If you are age 70 1/2 or older, use your IRA to make your charitable gift. This allows you to use your most highly taxed assets to do your giving. Simply contact your IRA custodian and direct them to make a transfer from your IRA directly to Nationwide Children's Hospital Foundation. The amount distributed to Nationwide Children's will not gross up your income, and the transfer will qualify for the required minimum distribution. Even though the required date to begin required minimum distributions has now been raised to 72, you can take advantage of this charitable option at age 70 1/2 or older.

  3. Time your giving and use your donor-advised fund to give in off years. Many donors time their giving by bunching multiple years of giving into a single year to be able to itemize their deductions. In 2021, the standard deduction for individuals is $12,550 for single taxpayers and $25,100 for married couples, with an additional increase for those age 65 or older. Donors who time their giving in this way often make their gifts to a donor-advised fund and then use that donor-advised fund for their charitable giving in subsequent years. If you have created a donor-advised fund, use that fund to make your year-end gifts to Nationwide Children's!

  4. The CARES Act provisions have been extended through the end of 2021 and offer two great ways to maximize giving. First, in 2021, taxpayers who take the standard deduction may claim an additional $300 deduction for cash/credit card/debit card gifts to public charities. While in 2020, only one $300 deduction was allowed per filer (whether single or filing jointly), in 2021, each taxpayer is allowed to claim the deduction.

  5. The CARES Act also allows donors who itemize to deduct up to 100% of their adjusted gross income for cash gifts to public charities made in 2021 (the Act excludes gifts to donor-advised funds or to supporting organizations). This is a great chance for donors to accelerate pledges and take the deduction in a single year. Gift amounts that exceed 100% of AGI can be carried forward for five years, subject to the 60% AGI limitations that existing law allows.

Please contact our Director of Planned Giving, Lori Aiello, at or 614-355-5417 who can walk through these options with you or answer any questions. Your gifts change lives and we appreciate your investment to provide the best outcomes for children everywhere.