Small Business Taxes & Management

Valuation Guide for Charitable Contributions

 

Small Business Taxes & Management--Copyright 1998-2014, A/N Group, Inc.

 

We've visited a number of thrift shops in the New York and New England area and found the following range of prices for selected items. You can use these as a guide to value property contributions to charitable organizations. There are several points to keep in mind. First, it's assumed that all items are in saleable condition. Prices vary widely based on the original quality of the item, how in or out of style the item is, and condition. For example, one pair of jeans may be brand new, that is, never worn, while another may be used but in good condition (no stains, rips, etc.). The new pair will probably command the high amount listed below. Second, prices can vary depending on the area of the country. Remember, this is only a starting point. Leather pants, coats, etc. command higher prices. Formal dresses and bridal gowns may be priced individually. Make sure the receipt indicates the reason for a higher price (e.g., leather pants; formal dress). Consider taking pictures of items with a high value, e.g., bridal gown, furniture in particularly good condition, etc. By the way, the average price is a strict arithmetic average, intended only as another guide. We found most prices clustered toward the low amount. If the charity doesn't provide you with an itemized receipt, do one on your own and get someone from the organization to sign it. Don't simply put "3 bags of clothing". That's a sure way to lose a deduction if audited.

Please keep in mind the new rules that began in 2006. The IRS can deny a deduction for property that is of minimal value. Examples include socks and underwear. In addition, clothing and household items generally must be in good used condition or better. That rule doesn't apply if the claimed deduction for a single item is $500 or more and a qualified appraisal is attached to the return. Since the cost of an appraisal in most cases is likely to exceed the benefits of any deduction, most taxpayers will likely only contribute property in good condition.

Men's Clothing               Low      High    Average
Belt/tie                   $ 2.00    $ 7.00    $ 4.50
Jacket                       6.00     25.00     15.50
Overcoat                    15.00     75.00     45.00
Pajamas                      2.00      8.00      5.00
Pants (short)                3.00      9.00      6.00
Pants                        5.00     15.00     10.00
Raincoat                     5.00     22.00     13.50 
Shirts                       3.50     10.00      6.75
Sweaters                     3.00     15.00      9.00
Suit                        16.00     65.00     40.50
Tuxedo                      12.00     65.00     38.50
Shoes                        4.00     25.00     14.50


Women's Clothing             Low      High    Average         
Blouse                      $3.00    $14.00     $8.50
Bathrobe                     3.00     14.00      8.50
Boots                        5.00     20.00     12.50
Bathing suit                 4.00     15.00      9.50
Coat                        10.00     60.00     35.00
Dress                        6.00     22.00     14.00
Evening dress               10.00     80.00     45.00
Fur hat                      7.00     30.00     18.50
Fur coat (fake)             25.00    275.00    150.00 
Handbag                      3.00     20.00     11.50
Hat                          2.00     12.00      7.00
Jacket                       6.00     20.00     13.00
Jeans                        5.00     20.00     12.50
Nightgown                    4.00     12.00      8.00
Pants suit                   9.00     30.00     19.50
Suit                        10.00     34.00     22.00
Shoes                        3.00     19.00     11.00
Shorts                       2.00      8.50      5.25
Skirt                        4.00     12.00      8.00
Sweater                      4.00     16.00     10.00
Slip                         1.00      5.00      3.00
Slacks                       4.00     12.00      8.00
Tank/T-shirt                 2.00      6.00      4.00
Vest                         3.00     10.00      6.50
Wedding dress/formal        30.00    220.00    125.00
Wig                          5.00     35.00     20.00

Children's Clothing          Low      High    Average
Blouse                       2.00      8.00      5.00
Boots                        2.00     16.00      9.00
Coat                         4.00     20.00     12.00
Dress                        4.00     12.00      8.00
Jacket                       3.00     25.00     14.00
Jeans                        3.00     14.00      8.50
Pants                        3.00     14.00      8.50
Snowsuit                     5.00     20.00     12.50
Shoes                        2.00     10.00      6.00
Skirt                        2.00      7.00      4.50
Sweater                      3.00     10.00      6.50
Slacks                       2.00      8.00      5.00
Shirt                        2.00      6.00      4.00

Furniture                    Low      High    Average
Bedroom set                150.00  1,000.00    575.00
Bed (complete, double)      50.00    180.00    115.00
Bed (complete, single)      25.00    100.00     62.50
Chest                       25.00    200.00    112.50
China cabinet               80.00    300.00    190.00
Crib (w/mattress)           25.00    100.00     62.50
Chair (upholstered)         25.00    100.00     62.50
Coffee table                15.00     75.00     45.00
Dining room set            140.00    800.00    470.00
Dresser                     20.00    100.00     60.00
Dresser with mirror         20.00    140.00     80.00
Desk                        15.00    185.00    200.00
Floor lamp                   6.00     50.00     28.00
Folding bed                 20.00     60.00     40.00
High chair                  10.00     60.00     35.00
Kitchen set                 30.00    190.00    110.00
Kitchen table               20.00     60.00     40.00
Kitchen chair                3.00     12.00      7.50
Lamp                         5.00     65.00     35.00
Mattress (double)           25.00     75.00     50.00
Piano                       75.00    550.00    312.50
Pictures/Paintings           5.00    100.00     52.50        
Play pen                     5.00     40.00     22.50
Rug                         20.00    120.00     70.00
Sofa                        50.00    200.00    125.00
Wardrobe                    25.00    140.00     82.50
              
Dry Goods                    Low      High    Average
Blanket                      2.00     10.00      6.00
Bedspread                    4.00     24.00     14.00
Drapes                       6.00     40.00     23.00
Pillow                       2.00      8.00      5.00
Sheet                        2.00      8.00      5.00
Throw rug                    2.00     16.00      9.00
Towel                         .50      4.00      2.25

Appliances                   Low      High    Average
Air conditioner             20.00     80.00     50.00
Dryer                       50.00    100.00     75.00
Electric stove              75.00    150.00    112.50
Gas stove                   50.00    125.00     87.50
Heater                       7.50     20.00     13.75
Microwave                   10.00     50.00     30.00
Radio                        8.00     44.00     26.00
Refrigerator                75.00    200.00    137.50
T.V. (color)                40.00    150.00     95.00
Washer                      40.00    160.00    100.00

Sporting Goods               Low      High    Average
Bicycle                     10.00    100.00     55.00
Fishing rod                  5.00     30.00     17.50
Golf clubs                   3.00     20.00     11.50
Ice skates                   5.00     30.00     17.50
Skis                        10.00    120.00     65.00
Sled                         5.00     20.00     12.50
Tennis racket                5.00     35.00     20.00

Miscellaneous                Low      High    Average
Answering machine           10.00     30.00     20.00
Book (hardcover)             1.00      4.00      2.50
Book (paperback)              .50      2.00      1.25
Carriage                     5.00     95.00     50.00
CDs                          1.00      5.00      3.00
Copier                      40.00    200.00    120.00
DVDs                         2.50      5.00      3.75
Fireplace set               20.00     80.00     50.00
Mower (riding)             100.00    400.00    250.00
Mower                       25.00    100.00     62.50
Personal computer           75.00    250.00    162.50
Radio                        5.00     30.00     17.50
Rototiller                  25.00    110.00     67.50
Sewing machine              15.00     85.00     50.00
Snow blower                 50.00    200.00    125.00
Vacuum cleaner              15.00     65.00     40.00

Notes.

 


Copyright 1998-2014 by A/N Group, Inc. This publication is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is distributed with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought. Articles in this publication are not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of avoiding accuracy-related penalties that may be imposed on a taxpayer. The information is not necessarily a complete summary of all materials on the subject. Copyright is not claimed on material from U.S. Government sources.--ISSN 1089-1536


 

Last update--02/04/14

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