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February 27, 2023

Common Misconceptions About Making a Car Donation (2023)

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!

Donate Your Old Car to Newgate School

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!