Is Donating a Car Good for the Environment?


Is Donating a Car Good for the Environment?

The short answer is yes! If you're interested in "going green" this year, you might wonder what sort of activities you can do to show your support for environmental protection.

Perhaps, you already practice the following daily habits:

• Recycling
• Opting for reusable shopping bags
• Conserving both water and electricity

These small changes in your routine offer huge benefits to the environment! Now what about some of those bigger decisions you’ve made in life, such as donating a car to charity? Why is this practice such a huge win for the environment—and also your community?

Why is Donating Your Car Good for the Environment?

Older vehicles can be inefficient with their fuel emissions. Therefore, no longer using these cars will cause less air pollution. In addition, leaks of oil, gas, and antifreeze from used vehicles can contaminate soil and water. Therefore, removing these unused cars from your driveway or yard helps protect the environment from getting exposed to such toxic fluids.
Recycling the steel parts within a vehicle can have massive environmental benefits, as well. It reduces the need of mining for iron ore, which can destroy wildlife habitats. In addition, recycling steel conserves a vast amount of energy rather than manufacturing new steel from raw iron ore.

Why is Donating Your Car Better for Your Community?

Your choice to donate a car is a conscious decision that ends up helping others in your community.

How does it do this?

You’re giving an individual and/or family the support and resources they need to go to work (i.e. contribute to the local economy) and provide for their loved ones (driving to grocery store, school activities, doctor’s appointments, etc.) 

At Newgate School, we take your donation a step further. When you donate your car, you’re giving a second chance on life for underemployed men and women, as well as single working mothers. Our vocational school offers free tuition to help students receive hands-on training to prepare them for future careers in the automotive industry. And their training begins with your donated vehicle!
Once vehicles are repaired, many of them are sold at auction, and those funds go right back into our school’s programs, allowing us to offer more opportunities for young adults to enroll in our programs, graduate, and become responsible, working citizens. And many of the vehicles that are not auctioned off are given (free of charge) to single, working mothers—as part of our Wheels for Women program.

Remember, the more you actively invest in your community, the more you make it a better place to live, work, and grow!

Why Is Donating Your Car Also Better for You?

Aside from all the outstanding community benefits it offers, donating your car can also save you time, money, and hassle. Between taking out an ad, negotiating a price, and filtering out real potential buyers, you can spend a ton of your free time trying to sell your old car without much success.
If you choose to donate your old car, truck, or van in the Twin Cities, we invite you to contact us to learn more about our nonprofit school, the programs we offer, and why Newgate is the best car donation charity in Minnesota!

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Common Misconceptions About Making a Car Donation


Donating a used vehicle to a local charity is a wonderful way to give back to your community. But simply typing into Google, “where can I donate my car” may not give you the exact answer you’re looking for. In fact, the search results can seem overwhelming, at first. The truth is before you can decide which charity is right for you, it’s important that you understand an organization’s mission so that your goals are aligned with that of the charity. A big part of that is to learn about the process for collecting and using donations. This way you can ensure that your vehicle is in the best hands possible, and it will leave the most impact on the those around you.  

At Newgate School, your car donation has a local and immediate impact. Your car’s proceeds—and sometimes the car itself—are used to help train unemployed or under-employed adults for high-demand careers as auto body technicians and auto mechanics. As part of their curriculum, students repair your donated cars, which are then sold at auction. And those dollars alone primarily fund our automotive school's operations and career-training programs.

Common Myths About Donating a Car

If you are struggling with the decision of whether or not to donate your car, here is a quick breakdown of 4 common misconceptions that may be the cause!

Myth 1: Car Donations Equal Financial Loss

Truth: Because of recent changes in tax laws, there’s been a lot of misinformation surrounding car donation tax credit eligibility. Many people worry that they will no longer receive a tax break for donating a vehicle to charity. Donated vehicles do qualify as tax deductible gifts if you itemize when filing your income taxes.  You should discuss your concerns of eligibility with your tax accountant. As for the vehicle, depending on its type and condition, you can quality for financial benefits if the charity plans on using it in its operations or plans to repair it so it can be given to an individual or family in need.

As mentioned earlier, Newgate School will use your vehicle for one of two purposes: (1) Our students will repair your donated car as part of the auto body and auto mechanic training program. After which, every cent of the revenue from the sale will go directly back into funding our schools’ operations, or (2) your donated vehicle will be repaired by our students and then given to a single, working mother in the area, as part of our Wheels for Women program.

So, no matter how we use your vehicle, you will still qualify for a tax credit!

Myth 2: Making a Car Donation is a Complicated Process

Truth: Depending on the charity, donating a vehicle can actually be quite simple. For example, at Newgate School, we take the hassle out of donating a car by processing all the necessary paperwork for you. How it works is one of our auto donation experts prepares the title work and reports the transaction electronically to the State of Minnesota. Afterward, you receive a donation receipt and a copy of the title. All you have to do then is cancel any insurance you have on the vehicle.

Myth 3: Some Vehicles Can’t be Donated

Truth: Every charity has a different set of guidelines on what kinds of donated cars they’ll accept. With Newgate, we accept every car, truck, or van of any year—as long as it is in repairable condition. Though newer models are helpful in training our students on the latest auto technology, we will never turn away a vehicle that can be repaired at a reasonable cost, and used to aid our school’s mission. If you are uncertain if your vehicle is repairable, contact the school and ask for Dennis. He will assist you in determining if your car is repairable. 

Myth 4: Communities Don’t Benefit from Donated Cars

Truth: As discussed under myth #1, when you donate to Newgate School, your car will directly impact the surrounding community. As a nonprofit automotive technical school, we offer auto body and auto mechanic training for unemployed or under-employed adults, which allows us to continue to help low-income young adults succeed in their quest for self-sufficiency. In addition, our Wheels for Women program has helped us provide hundreds of cars to low-income single working moms. Because our school is primarily funded by your donations, you can rest assured that your car will be in good hands and will have the biggest impact on those around you.

If you’re interested in donating your car to Newgate School,  contact us today and you’ll quickly discover why we’re one of the best car donation charities in Minnesota!

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Smart Tips for Donating a Car to Charity


Donating a car to charity

You have this extra car that has been part of your family’s life for some time that you almost never use.  You don’t want to trade it in because you don’t really need another vehicle in the family, or it won’t bring a fair price on trade. Selling it means you have to engage potential buyers in the negotiating process, and that’s not what you want to do. So, you have decided to consider donating it to a worthy cause.  Now you have questions.  How does the process work, and what are the factors to consider when donating a car to charity.

Let’s explore the process further to help you learn how to donate a car with confidence and how to identity which non-profit organization will offer the most value and return on your investment, and leave you feeling like your used car will continue to be an important part of a person in need's life.

What Criteria Should I Look for in a Local Charity?

For many non-profits, the goal of helping struggling families and individuals receive the support and assistance they need to achieve a higher quality of life plays a fundamental role in how they run their organization.

But how do you know if a charity is reputable?

Questions to Ask a Charity Prior to Making a Car Donation

Before making any type of donation, it’s essential that you first understand how the organization plans to use your donated vehicle to help support the local community.

Important questions to ask prior to making a car donation:

 Does the organization plan on using the vehicle in its operations?
 How will the organization use the vehicle to better its mission?
 Will the organization give my car to someone in need?
 How does the organization determine who receives the vehicle?
 What percentage of proceeds does the organization receive from the car’s sale?
 How does the organization use these proceeds to benefit others?

Understanding the answers to these questions will allow you to make well-informed decisions on whether a charity stays true to its mission and whether its practices reflect your values.

How Can I Qualify for a Car Donation Tax Credit?

An organization that plans to use the vehicle in its operations or gives it to an individual or family in need will allow you to receive a car donation tax deduction. If your vehicle is sold, your deduction will be based on its selling price. In this case, the minimum deduction of up to $500 can be claimed for vehicles that are either sold or used for parts. 

Since the passing of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, it’s necessary that you itemize your charitable deductions to receive a car donation tax credit. Be sure to secure a receipt from your charity (within 30 days) that documents how the vehicle was used, so you can determine the amount of your car donation tax deduction.

Extra Tips for Donating a Car

Have Your Title Handy: In order to make a car donation, you’ll need to have your title ready. If there is a lender listed on the title, you will need a lien release at the time of donation, even if the lien has been satisfied for some time.  The lender is typically listed on the front of the title. 

Take a Picture of the Car. If you plan on claiming a deduction for a car donation, you may wish to take photos of the vehicle for future reference. 

About Our Car Charity

Newgate School is a nonprofit automotive technical school located in the Twin Cities that offers auto body and auto mechanic training for unemployed or under-employed adults.  When you donate your car to Newgate, your vehicle will be used to help train and prepare students for their future careers as auto mechanics.

The goal of our charity is to place graduates into meaningful careers in the auto trades throughout the Twin Cities area. The students, along with their instructors, work together to evaluate each donated car, truck, or van to determine what level of repair is the most cost-effective. If it is determined that a donated vehicle is not cost-effective to repair, it will be used for parts, and your tax deduction will be up to $500. But if it is determined that your donated vehicle is cost-effective to repair, a student is then assigned to perform the repairs to the vehicle. Once the work has been completed, the car is detailed and prepared for sale at the local wholesale auto auction. 

A portion of all donated vehicles are given -at no cost- to a promising single working mom to help her transition to self-sufficiency—as part of our Wheels for Women transportation assistance program. Both of these options allow you to receive the fair market value car donation tax deductions, and most importantly, allow you to make a huge difference in the lives of others.  

We invite you to contact us to learn more about our nonprofit school, and discover why we are one of the best car donation charities in MN!

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4 Best Qualities to Look for in An Auto Mechanic


auto mechanic refilling motor oil in car engine

Whether your car is due for a routine oil change or your check engine light has just come on, finding the right auto mechanic shop can be a daunting task. As your primary mode of transportation, you’ll want to ensure your car is in good hands with an experienced auto mechanic, who has the best tools and knowledge to get the work done right!

To help narrow down your search, here are the 4 best qualities to look for when choosing an auto mechanic to service your vehicle:

1. Great Communication: Coming in at number one on our list is great communication and customer service skills. Your car may be in the shop for a variety of reasons (e.g. tire rotation, new brakes, engine repair, diagnostic testing, etc.). And depending on the type of repair or replacement needed to get your car back on the road, you’ll want a mechanic who’s personable and who talks you through your options, so you can make well-informed decisions. A quality auto mechanic is one who explains the issue and is committed to ensuring you understand every step of the repair process as well as one who encourages you to ask questions.

2. Auto Mechanical Expertise: In addition to great communication and customer service skills, it’s essential that your mechanic has a superior knowledge of the auto industry and is trained to perform the type of work needed. Cars break down for a variety of reasons, so it’s important to choose a mechanic who can diagnose a problem quickly, come up with a practical solution, and use the best tools and equipment to fix the issue.

3. Professional Work Ethic: It should be easy to spot a professional work ethic. This is someone who doesn’t waste time standing around. Instead, this person is ready to get his or her hands dirty and does so by getting right to work on your repair, so your car is back to optimal function in no time! 

4. Experience: Although this relates back to expertise, experience is a must have when choosing an auto mechanic. Because the auto industry is constantly evolving to keep up with new car designs and technology, your mechanic must have the hands-on experience, know how, and equipment to handle new and older vehicles.

At Newgate School, we work to ensure that every student who enrolls in our auto mechanic training program reflects these same types of qualities when they enter the workforce. Through our hands-on auto repair vocational school, we help students receive the training and experience they need to reach their full potential and obtain rewarding careers in the auto industries. And we’re able to achieve this because of generous car donations from people like you! To learn more about our school’s auto programs and how 

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Why Make a Car Donation in the Twin Cities?


Man makes car donation in the Twin Cities

The new year is traditionally a time for new beginnings. It’s the perfect occasion for setting new goals aimed at bettering ourselves and improving the world we live in. Perhaps one of your new year’s resolutions is volunteering or donating some of your personal belongings to local charities to support others in your neighborhood. But deciding which charity aligns with your values, works to make a difference in the lives of others, and helps promote a stronger community can be tricky.

Depending on your personal situation, you may not realize that the perfect donation is actually sitting right in your garage or on your driveway. If you have an older vehicle in your possession that you’re thinking of selling, why not consider Newgate School first.

Why Donate a Car to Newgate School:
Do you believe in second changes? We do at Newgate School. And we believe this starts with a quality education and real hands-on learning opportunities. At our auto repair vocational school, we offer unemployed or under-employed adults the chance to pursue rewarding careers as auto body technicians and auto mechanics.

When you donate your car to Newgate, it will be used to help train students on how to professionally restore cars, which are then sold at auction. The money received after the sale is used to fund our school’s autobody mechanic training programs, allowing us to enroll more students and help them become contributing members of our great Twin Cities area.
And your car donation extends well beyond our school’s training programs. Your auto donation also supports our “Wheels for Women” transportation assistance program, which awards single working moms throughout the Twin Cities a refurbished vehicle (at no cost) to help them become self-sufficient.

How to Donate a Car to Newgate School:
The first thing you need to do is bring your used vehicle and title to our school during regular business hours. No appointment is necessary! Once you arrive, we’ll help you prepare the title work and report the transfer electronically to the State of Minnesota. Once you receive a donation receipt and a copy of the title work, you can immediately cancel your auto insurance.

In approximately 30-days, you will receive the final auto donation receipt that complies with IRS guidelines. The receipt shows how we used your vehicle and will help you determine the amount of your car donation tax deduction.

If your vehicle is not drivable, call Dennis Dunn, Newgate’s transportation manager, at 612 378-0177, and he may be able to schedule a tow to collect your vehicle. 

If you’re looking to make a real difference when you give, why not donate your used vehicle to Newgate School rather than selling it. Contact us today or visit our website for more details. Your donation makes a difference!

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