Frequently Asked Questions

Are my contributions tax-deductible?

Yes, we are a charity – a 501(c)(3) nonprofit per IRS classifications – and your donations are tax-deductible. For each donation of one or more items valued at $250 or more, the IRS requires a written receipt or acknowledgment, which we’ll supply unless you prefer us to sign your own itemized list (which need not include valuations). The IRS requires that a person donating property valued at more than $5,000 must first obtain a qualified written appraisal.

What items do we accept for donations?

We especially appreciate donations of clothing; we also take housewares, linens, small furniture (Larger items may be donated by special arrangement), vehicles, etc. We can use almost anything that is in sellable condition. In order to avoid high disposal costs ($30,000 in 2010), we ask that you allow us leave behind items that are not suitable.

What vehicles do we accept for donations?

We accept almost any kind of vehicle of value, operable or not. We sell the vehicles ourselves, in our thrift stores’ parking lots, unless they are in such poor condition that they have value for parts only. You will receive a written receipt upon donation of your vehicle and acknowledgment within 30 days after the vehicle is sold. This receipt will have all the IRS-required information: donor’s name and taxpayer identification number; vehicle identification or similar number; a statement certifying that our organization sold the car in an arm’s length transaction between unrelated parties; the gross proceeds (selling price) from the sale; a statement that the donor’s charitable contribution deduction may not be more than the gross proceeds from the sale; and the date of the contribution.

How should my donations be prepared?

Items should be clean and ready for re-use or resale, if at all possible. Please bag or box loose items.

Do you repair or reupholster items?

We’re sorry, but it is very costly to pick up, repair and/or reuplhoster, and try to resell such items. In fact, it is a money-losing process that few organizations can afford to engage in unless they are heavily subsidized to engage in rehabilitation and work training programs.

What items are not accepted for donations?

We cannot normally accept the following items, for the reason(s) noted:

  • Mattresses and Box Springs: The state of California requires that mattresses and box springs undergo an expensive sanitation process before being resold; this process costs more than we could normally sell a used mattress or box spring for in our thrift stores.
  • Large Appliances: These items are difficult and expensive to pick up and, unless they are hooked up and operating, thrift store shoppers do not trust them to work and so are willing to pay very little for them.
  • Large Furniture requiring cleaning or repair.

Do you make pick-ups?

Yes, gladly. If there are large items requiring two persons to load them, please let us know when scheduling the pick-up through our toll-free number, 800-435-7328.

Can I drop items off and, if so, where?

Yes, you can drop items off at any of our thrift stores; please click here for a list of our locations. Small quantities, like a few bags of clothing, can be dropped off with one of the cashiers near the front of the store, and large quantities can be dropped off in the truck delivery area of the store. Either way, you’ll get a receipt for tax-deductibility purposes.