Tax relief for spring-cleaning

Half of all charity shops operate tax-efficient “donated stock” schemes - at no cost to donors - while allowing higher-rate taxpayers to reduce their own tax bills by 25p for every £1 an item sells for
Half of all charity shops operate tax-efficient “donated stock” schemes. These add 28 per cent in tax relief to the sale proceeds of donations, such as unwanted clutter from a spring clean - at no cost to donors - while allowing higher-rate taxpayers to reduce their own tax bills by 25p for every £1 an item sells for. Last year charities boosted their revenues by £19m this way.

How does it work?


Donors need to fill in a Gift Aid form at their chosen charity shop. Donated goods can include clothes, books, CDs as well as more valuable items. The tax benefits only become available when items sell, at which point the charity writes to the donor. Individual relief then needs to be claimed through a tax return.

How much could I earn?


Some households could net hundreds of pounds in tax savings while helping out charities and decluttering their homes.

For someone on the new 50 per cent top rate of income tax, the personal tax relief could be worth £37.50 for every £100 raised. Donors earning just over £100,000 could even qualify for effective relief of 60 per cent.

And if 50 per cent taxpayers also donate their personal tax relief, each £100 that items sell for would be worth £176.28 in the hands of the charity, according to the Charities Aid Foundation.

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