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What You Need to Know When You Donate a Car to Veterans

July 30, 2018

There’s no one more deserving of our support than our men and women in uniform, and when you donate a car to veterans, you personally contribute to their physical and mental well-being.

According to the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs, more than 20 former servicemen and women commit suicide every day. Not only that but on any given night, more than 40,000 vets have nowhere to lay their heads. 

What Are the Best Charities for Donating a Car to Veterans?

When you donate a car to veterans, you want the money to hit the target – right smack in the middle. That means you need to choose a company that gives you a number of options to choose from, so you can support what you truly care about.

For instance, if it grieves you most that our fighting men and women come back stateside and have nowhere to live, then you want to donate a car to veterans that will benefit a non-profit like the Central Oregon Veterans Ranch or the National Vet Foundation.

Who Can Help Me Donate a Car to Veterans?

If you are unfamiliar with the process of making a donation to veterans and their families, you need an experienced “lead officer,” someone who knows the ropes and can take care of everything. It’s not that it’s complicated, but the only thing you should be responsible for is to choose the right charity and hand over the car keys.

Do you need help choosing a charity for a car donation to veterans?

When researching vehicle donation programs, avoid those without choices of non-profit organizations. When only one charity is listed, chances are it is sponsored by that organization. That means you can only donate a car to veterans to benefit that company.

In our 30 years of processing car donations at Cars2Charities, we’ve been able to award much-needed financial backing to veterans through many charity groups – you can choose one on our website on the “causes” page. And we give you detailed descriptions of each non-profit, so you can make an educated decision. 

But even more importantly, we allow you to choose one of your own! As long as it’s a 501(c)(3) – it’s deductible.
If you’re a volunteer at the VA or even do banking through USAA because of a military family member, you may not have a non-profit on your radar. That’s okay – you can consult Charity Navigator and search for a military charity to support. It’s a very reliable website – a decade and a half old, with 11 million visitors a year – and it offers ratings on veterans carsalmost 10,000 charities.

When you’re choosing a charity to benefit that makes sure to donate a car to veterans, be aware there are foundations where very few dollars actually make it to the cause. Some are downright scandalous, really. Only contribute to charities that are transparent about administrative costs and about the actual work they do.

And for that matter, be sure your car donation to veterans is handled by a transparent car donation company as well. For instance, at Cars2Charities, we follow IRS tax guidelines for the paperwork involved in your write-off, title transfer, etc.

What about a golf cart donation to veterans, or a boat donation?

Sure, you can donate a car to veterans, but you may not realize you can also make a boat, motorcycle or RV donation to veterans.

Do you have a lot of “toys”? If you feel like it’s a little extravagant – no way! You’ve got to have fun in life. But it doesn’t mean you should ignore what it’s costing you – to maintain and fuel your it’s deductible, etc. and paying for vehicle storage.

Do you have a golf cart? There’s an added bonus: You can actually donate it directly to veterans to provide them with transportation. This helps former service persons make it to job interviews or get to a horse therapy program ... or just get to the VFW Post because they need someone to talk to.

Perhaps your Harley days are behind you. In that case, your car charity donation to veterans may be a 2-wheeler. We’ve processed so many car donations going to such charities as Heroes in the Rough.

Houston1 1Mainstream charities benefit veterans as well. Most people know the Salvation Army for their bell-ringing Santas and popular thrift stores. However, it’s a solid non-profit that helps so many Americans in uniform.

In other words, you can donate a car to veterans by simply telling us to direct the proceeds to the Salvation Army, because many of their programs have vets in mind.

You don’t have to be on the board at a non-profit to know the desperation our former military men and women are experiencing. All you have to do is watch the news.

But you can – in a real way – become a part of their healing process when you donate a car to veterans.