People love to give to charity, but there are literally thousands and thousands of charities from which to choose, so how do you make sure your dollars are going to the best possible cause?
Here are 4 tips to make sure your money goes as far as possible with the biggest impact possible:
1. Probably the worst thing to do is to give to an anonymous organization soliciting your aid. The IRS has almost no power over most charitable organizations since they usually don't pay taxes so this makes it very easy to be defrauded.
2. Never make a gift to an organization where you did not initiate the contact first. Unsolicited phone calls from charities who employ telemarketers are putting less of your donation to work because of the extra marketing costs they have to pay.
3. If you are donating online, make sure the website address starts with https, make sure the "s" is at the end. This indicates a secure connection.
4. Probably the best way to avoid charity scammers is to research the charity beforeyou hand over your cash. One popular website is charitynavigator.org.
Make sure you get the maximum return on your charitable contributions by making sure the majority of your money actually goes to the good works of the charity and not marketing efforts and avoid being taken advantage of by fraudsters.