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Boat Donation FAQ

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF DONATING MY BOAT TO THE MICHIGAN RADIO BOAT DONATION PROGRAM?

It’s simple, straightforward and free. You may be entitled to a tax deduction. You’ll avoid the hassle of selling a boat you no longer want, and the cost of maintaining your old vessel. Your contribution benefits Michigan Radio and all of the programs you love. Just fill out a form to get started and we do the rest.

DO YOU ACCEPT ALL BOATS?

We consider every boat that is presented to us and we ask that every donor fill out the “Boat Donation Wizard”. It asks a series of questions about the boat, its location and features and condition. For larger vessels, we may ask you to complete a second form to provide more detailed information. On the basis of these answers about the boat, we decide if we can accept the boat and which marketplace is the most advantageous for its sale. We consider where there will be the most buyers looking for this particular type of boat.

Note, that there are some boats that have such little residual value that it would cost more to take on the task of selling the boat. Our detailed Boat Donation Wizard provides us with all the information we need to make a complete assessment of your vessel.

HOW IS THE VALUE OF MY BOAT DETERMINED?

For most tax matters, the price at which the boat sells is the amount on which the deduction is based. The “fair market value”, for boats selling for less than $500, is the price the boat in its current condition could sell for between a willing seller and a willing buyer. These values represent the “cash” that the IRS will acknowledge that you gave up in making your donation.

For larger vessels, we will typically work with the donor to determine a reasonable price within the marketplace.

HOW MUCH WILL MY TAX WRITE-OFF BE?

You are entitled to receive a tax deduction equal to the sales price of the boat if you itemize your deductions. If it is sold for less than $500, you can deduct the “fair market value” up to $500. You will receive a tax receipt or IRS Form 1098C stating what the boat sold for within 30 days of its sale.

IS THERE ANY COST TO ME IN DONATING MY BOAT?

There is no cost to you as the donor. All expenses are deducted from the gross sales price of the boat and if the costs ever exceed the price, we absorb the loss.

WHAT IF I HAVE TITLE ISSUES?

If you don’t have a title certificate, can’t find it, or have problems with your title, call us. Our friendly, trained donation specialists deal with boat registries and Secretary of State/DMV offices across the country every day and are expert in solving these matters.

HOW MUCH WORK IS IT FOR ME?

It’s easy to donate a boat. It will take you 5 to 10 minutes to input the boat info into our “Donation Wizard” on-line and give the info to our trained Donor Service Representative. You fill out the Wizard and we will quickly review the information and get back to you with an assessment of your boat and next steps.

HOW LONG WILL THIS TAKE?

Since the type and condition of boats vary greatly, we handle each boat in the manner called for. [See ‘Do you accept all boats? above.] The timing may also vary depending on time of year. Once you provide us with the information in the Boat Donation Wizard, we will be able to tell you how long things might take.

WHO MANAGES THE PROGRAM?

The boat donation program is managed for Michigan Radio by Charitable Adult Rides and Services, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

WHAT ARE THE COSTS AND FEES DEDUCTED FROM THE SALES PRICE OF THE BOAT?

Once the boat is sold and the sales revenues are collected, we deduct the cost of transporting, storing, maintaining and selling the boat from that gross sales amount. This may include marketing cost and brokerage costs.  We also deduct any costs for title transfer and government filings. From these net proceeds, Michigan Radio receives 80%  and Charitable Adult Rides and Services keeps 20% as their fee to manage the program.

WHAT DOES MICHIGAN RADIO DO WITH THE MONEY RAISED FROM MY BOAT DONATION?

Money raised from our boat donation program helps pay for the news and entertainment programming on Michigan Radio. Contributions from listeners are the largest source of income for Michigan Radio and help support both our daily news and long-term investigative reporting, as well as helping to pay our NPR program fees.

(CLICK HERE TO BEGIN YOUR BOAT DONATION)