In Your Interest: What motivates you to give?

What motivates you to give?

Let’s say that you are watching TV one evening and you see a commercial that shows a hungry child. You are drawn into that scene, and cannot easily forget it. You are moved into action, and make a contribution to the sponsoring organization. You can reasonably assume that you are motivated by spontaneous giving appeals.

Some people will respond to this type of appeal, while others are motivated in other ways. It is important to understand what motivates you to give so that you can get proper gift planning in place.

For example, if you do not have a lot of discretionary income but you are easily motivated to give spontaneously, you would want to be very careful when that commercial comes on. You could perhaps budget a certain amount each month for “unanticipated” giving.

Maybe, however, you are more likely to give after you have given it much thought and prayer. You learn that your gift to the ministry featured on TV can make a difference for many years to come, maybe even after your lifetime. So you think and plan how you can make that gift, usually through your will or other estate planning document. You are most likely motivated by legacy giving appeals.

This type of gift can be one of the most thoughtful ways to give, because it allows for ongoing support of the ministry. It is also rather simple to do. With the help of estate planners, individuals can learn how they can make a legacy gift that also fits their family dynamics, lifestyle, and current giving habits.

Do you have your will or other estate planning documents in place? Having these documents prepared, whether or not you make a charitable gift, is essential to you and your family. Making charitable gifts through your estate plan is even better, as it passes on your legacy of faith to your family members.

Think about the testimony you pass on to future generations when they learn of your charity. Is there a ministry, at your church or other charity, that you would like to see continue many years after you are gone? Would you like to see your family involved in making gifts to charities that they feel are important? What if they could do so with a fund that you set aside for that purpose?

These and many other ideas are awaiting you when you develop your estate plan. Contact your attorney or the Baptist Foundation of South Carolina to find out how you can really make a difference with money that you will not need anymore!

— In accordance with IRS Circular 230, any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein.