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Growth of Donor Advised Funds

These days, have you noticed that many of the donors listed to charities are family funds such as the Smith Family Fund or the Jones Charitable Fund at the Community Foundation?  These donors are using a donor advised fund (DAF), and in a sense, are outsourcing their giving. By using a donor advised fund for their philanthropy, they can make a grant by sending a text or an email, or by clicking a box through our online site.  Not only is it a simple way to give, but the best part for these families—the majority of whom contribute appreciated stock or other assets to their DAF—is that they enjoy greater tax savings. Assets held in DAFs nationally now exceed $85 billion. In 2017 these assets increased by 9.7% over the previous year. This level of growth has been going on for years as people discover the Donor advised fund advantages.  At the Community Foundation of Western Nevada, almost half of our assets are monies held in DAFs. According to National Philanthropic Trust 2017 Donor-Advised Fund Report, the typical donor becomes even more charitable once they establish a DAF.  The $85 billion held in DAFs is granted out to the community fairly quickly.  Grant payout rates in 2017 average 20.3%. With the increase this year of the standard minimum deduction, many people who might not itemize this year could exceed that threshold by contributing to a DAF and gain valuable tax benefits. Consider bringing up the idea of creating a DAF for your charitable giving with your advisor. You may see significant advantages to your financial planning.  As DAFs have become a part of mainstream giving, I encourage everyone to consider establishing a fund with the Community Foundation.  By doing so, in addition to the ease of giving and tax benefits, you receive philanthropic advising services from our staff to help you achieve the impact you intend. If you haven’t considered setting up a donor advised fund, please do so.  We are here to help you Care, Connect, and Engage. To learn more, please give us a call at 775-333-5499. Chris Askin, President, and CEO Connecting people who care with causes that matter
National Philanthropic Trust, 2017