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Old Feb 22, 04, 12:19 pm   #1
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Soap donation?

I have a huge bag full of soaps, shampoo, conditioner, mouthwash and other hotel toiletries.

I know people donate stuff like this to shelters or other charities. Does anyone ever take a writeoff on their taxes for doing so, and if so, what is the rule of thumb?

Not trying to be overly greedy...just finished our taxes and I need to find more deductions this year!
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Old Feb 22, 04, 1:48 pm   #2
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If you go to a shelter they will probably offer you a donation receipt. Seriously, if you donate $100 of stuff, how much are you going to save on your taxes?
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Old Feb 22, 04, 2:42 pm   #3
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You're too late for this year's taxes.
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Old Feb 22, 04, 3:33 pm   #4
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by RJSachs:
You're too late for this year's taxes.</font>
Thank you, Einstein! Actually, 'this year' is 2004 so I still have 10 months to find deductions.

[This message has been edited by dingo (edited Feb 22, 2004).]
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Old Feb 22, 04, 3:59 pm   #5
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Heh, Heh - Just a little tax time humor

[This message has been edited by RJSachs (edited Feb 24, 2004).]
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Old Feb 22, 04, 4:02 pm   #6
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[deleted by the moderator --richard, moderator]

[This message has been edited by richard (edited Feb 22, 2004).]
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Old Feb 22, 04, 4:13 pm   #7
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nm

[This message has been edited by RJSachs (edited Feb 24, 2004).]
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Old Feb 22, 04, 4:33 pm   #8
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hey hey hey, let's be friends here, ok?

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Old Feb 22, 04, 5:20 pm   #9
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You will probably receive a donation receipt from the chairity for soap and sahmpoo, but not a dollar value, they will leave you to figure that out.

As a deduction it's not going to add up to much, the breck shampoo bottles are worth eighteen cents each, the soaps about a nickle each (based on what hotels can purchase them for).

Little shampoo bottles aren't something that you donate for the deduction, but to help others, as a deduction it's not worth much.
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Old Feb 22, 04, 5:48 pm   #10
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I dont think I would risk an IRS audit by claiming such a deduction.

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Old Feb 22, 04, 5:50 pm   #11
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Old Feb 23, 04, 8:31 am   #12
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I donate this stuff all the time... to a local shelter... I have never thought of taking a deduction anyway.

How do you value the donation? According to IRS regulations, you can only take a deduction for what you "paid" or received consideration for. I doubt the hotel would have changed your rate if you said "I do not want the tolietries". As such, you have no true "cost" for those items. SO, there is really no TRUE value you can place on the items.

Of course, that does not mean people do not try to gain a value... but does not seem right.

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Old Feb 23, 04, 9:48 am   #13
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Thats not exactly correct. You may rightfully claim the "fair market value (FMV)" ie the willing seller and willing buyer senario. For example you my deduct the FMV for items given to you as a gift, from an inherentence etc.

As for multi teeny bars of soap, shampoo etc I assume this would not be an easy task especially when you consider your "ultimate user" and what amount they would willingly or realistically pay.

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Old Feb 24, 04, 8:53 am   #14
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The prices I listed above are the real prices for those, a nickle for soap, etc.
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Old Feb 24, 04, 11:15 am   #15
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Cost of soap: 5cents.

Cost of shampoo: 18cents.

Cost of feeling good about yourself for donating & helping others less fortunate: Priceless!

Donate the stuff; forget about the write-off. It's too small to make a dif to your taxes, and the good feeling you get from donating & helping others is much higher.

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