Giving Restores My Faith in Humanity (ok it can reduce tax bills too)

There were bad things in the news, again, yesterday. There often are.

Two things happened to me that resuscitated my belief in the underlying goodness of people; both happened at my running club.

One of the runners was taken ill, so one of the other guys, drove with him to the hospital, stayed there all night, took him back to his car in the morning and before returning to his family. A truly generous and caring act.

We had a talk from Shelter Box, our charity of the year. This is a charity that helps people who no longer have a home because of Flood, Earthquake, Storm or War. They get a box which contains the basics to start again – a tent, water filter, pans, blankets, solar light…..and they have helped tens of thousands of people. So ordinary people are giving their time and their money to help people they don’t know in desperate need of help. I find that really uplifting.

In may ways the charity helps those who give as much as those who receive. Helping provide basic shelter to people and doing good in the world, just makes us feel good, and what’s the harm in that!

So how can you give and save a bit of tax?

Gift aid is the most common way. If you pay under gift aid, the charity gets 25p back for every £1 you donate; if you’re a higher rate tax payer you also get 25p back when you do your tax return.

You can leave money in your will, there is no inheritance tax to pay since your heirs are not inheriting. The only trouble is that you won’t see the benefit of the donation!

If you donate an asset to a charity you don’t pay capital gains tax on the disposal AND you get income tax relief. This can really super charge your donation.