These days weddings can easily break the piggy bank. But you can help to defray some of your costs with careful planning. There are tax write-offs that you can take advantage of, if you take the right steps.
Do you anticipate wearing your wedding gown again?
Most hope not, so why not donate it? Consider bridesmaid and flower girl dresses as well. There are many charitable organizations that would be happy to receive them, and not only will someone else take pleasure in them, but you will be able to use the donations as a tax deduction.
Where are you having your service?
If in a church, synagogue, or other place of worship, and if you are paying a fee, check to see if the fee can be waived for members who contribute over a certain amount. It could be worthwhile to up your donations for the year to qualify for the waived fee. Donating to a good cause makes you feel good as well as help with tax deductions.
Where are you having your reception?
If you pick a non-profit location for your ceremony or reception, that’s another tax deduction. Places like museums, historic homes or buildings, or publicly owned parks usually use the money for maintenance and preservation. But before you book, make sure you verify that the location is a non-profit.
Want your gifts to give?
Set up your gift registry through the IDoFoundation. A percentage of the cost of each gift purchased through the foundation will be given to the charity you choose. The IDoFoundation has selected charities that ‘promote social change in underserved communities’. Couples can find a list of charities and guests can find a list of participating stores on the foundation’s Website.
Looking for something unique to give your bridal party attendants?
Considering the cost of weddings, most are not able to give extravagant gifts to each participant. So instead of giving them doodads, think about donations in their names to their favorite charities? Another tax write-off.
Leftover food from the rehearsal dinner or wedding meal?
Donating items to a food pantry, rescue mission, shelters, or other non-profit organizations can provide a nutritious meal, and can help aid with food budgets. But, while this is another donation to write off, there are definitely items that you cannot donate such as opened food items, or personally wrapped meats. Check first with the charity to see what they can accept and have a volunteer standing by for delivery.
Done with your flowers?
Don’t let them wilt without anyone enjoying them. Donate them to a nursing home, hospital, or other care facility to help cheer up the elderly or patients receiving medical treatment. Not only will it make you feel good, but can also help with taxes.
Receipts, receipts, receipts
To substantiate your donation claims with the IRS, make sure you have the receipts from the charitable organizations, and hold on to the contract with your wedding venue, along with the payment receipt.
While these deductions won’t cover the cost of your wedding, they can at least take some of the sting out of your taxes.
Get guidance from your tax preparer and ask about filing jointly. If you don’t have a tax preparer, feel free to contact us, one of our staff would be happy to answer any questions you may have.