It's almost that time when you begin to gather all of the information you need to file your taxes. This may not help you with taxes for 2012 as much as it will for 2013.
If you donate used items in good or better condition to a charity, like Goodwill or Salvation Army; start keeping track and getting a receipt for each time. I know many people are beginning to (or already have) cleared out their homes of unwanted things since it is the New Year. If you haven't donated your things yet. Write out a list of everything you are donating before you drop it off (or if you already did drop things off, write as much as you can remember down). Seriously! It will help.
Let me explain:
The easiest way to claim donated items on your taxes are if the total donated equated to less than $500. (If it is more than that you need to fill out Form 8283 see here for more about this). After you write down all the items you are donating, go to Goodwill or Salvation Army and use their form to determine value for the items. Or you can use Goodwill's Donation Receipt Builder. The receipt builder is fairly easy (and you don't have to do any of the math yourself if you use it). Now after you donate, keep this list with the value and your receipt from the location together in your tax folder so you are ready when it comes time to file your taxes.
Key Point: Make sure you get a receipt and itemize your totals whenever you donate items that you wish to claim on your taxes!
Hope this helps some of you who are getting ready to donate your extra clutter!