Goodwill graphic with text: Donate a Car. Change a Life.

How to Decide Whether to Sell or Donate Your Car

You’ve
recently upgraded your vehicle—congratulations! Now you just have to decide
what to do with your old car. You have several options: you could trade your
vehicle in at a dealership, sell it privately, or donate it to a charitable
organization. Which one should you choose?

Side view of Navy 2005 BMW 330 Ci At Goodwill Auto Auction
BMW from Goodwill

The
good news is, it’s not too difficult to list the pros and cons of trading in or
selling a vehicle versus donating your car to a good cause. Here’s a closer
look at the benefits and drawbacks of each option:

Trading in

Pros: This method is relatively easy. You take your car to
the dealer, haggle a little, and make the deal.

Cons: A car dealership has to make money on the resale of
your car, so the offer will likely be below market value.

Private-party sale

Pros: Because you’re cutting out the “middle man,”
you can list and sell your car at market value.

Cons: This option requires a lot more effort on your part and
will probably take longer. You’ll go through the hassle of creating ads,
listing your vehicle online, and arranging meet-ups with potential buyers.
Plus, there’s no guarantee when (or if) you will find a buyer!

Donating your vehicle to charity

Pros: Donating a vehicle to charity feels good and will
benefit a cause that will make the world a better place. It takes less time
than listing your car for sale or taking it to a dealership.

Cons: You won’t make any money, but you could be eligible for
a tax advantage.

So,
there you have it, the pros and cons of for-profit vs. donating your car to a
charitable organization like Ohio Valley Goodwill.

However,
there may be a little bit more to this discussion than meets the eye. Of
course, it’s easy to assign a value to the monetary benefit of selling. But
what’s the true value of the “feel-good” piece of helping others?

As
it turns out, giving not only makes you feel good, but it can also improve your
physical health and mental well-being. There’s even science to prove it!

Giving is good
for your health

According to
studies
conducted by John Hopkins University, people live longer,
display fewer physical symptoms of illness, and have lower blood pressure when
they give social support to others. Donating may be the “secret sauce” to a
longer and healthier life!

Likewise,
donating to a good cause can contribute to stronger social connections and
feeling a renewed sense of purpose. Studies have found that those who give experience
less anxiety and depression and have better overall feelings of self-worth.
These studies concluded that donating to charity generates chemical reactions
in the brain that can lead to enhanced mental health and wellness.

It
seems science is telling us that altruism—the selfless act of helping others—is
not only good for others, but it’s also good for our overall health and
well-being!

Be choosy about
where you donate

You
know that giving is good, but with so many causes out there, how do you decide
which ones align with your values? Knowing exactly where your donations are
going and who they are benefiting will help you make more thoughtful decisions
about your giving.

When you
donate a car to Goodwill, you are helping support valuable services that impact
people’s lives throughout Greater Cincinnati. The vehicles donated to Goodwill
are resold at our weekly auto auction, where the proceeds generated help to
support Goodwill’s programs and services. Best of all, Ohio Valley Goodwill’s
innovative auto auction process is operated entirely in-house, which means
there’s no third-party auction house taking a “cut” of your charitable donation.

Goodwill graphic with text: Donate a Car. Change a Life.
Goodwill graphic with text: Donate a Car. Change a Life.

Donating
a car to Ohio Valley Goodwill helps our mission to create jobs and change the
lives of individuals with disabilities and veterans in our community. When you
donate your car to Goodwill, you become a job creator in your community—now
that’s a very good thing!

Ready to
donate a car to Goodwill? We make the car donation process easy!

Simply
fill out our online
donation form
and we’ll contact you
about your donation. We can even arrange to pick up your vehicle FREE of
charge! To learn more, read our frequently asked questions about
donating a vehicle to Goodwill.

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