Archive for January, 2013

Donate Your Car and Join a Carpool

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

If you have been thinking of ways to save money this year, donating your car to Goodwill and joining a carpool may be a great option for you. Carpools are a great way to share resources and cut costs for all members.

Here are some of the benefits to carpooling:

  1. Save Gas Money – Gas is becoming very expensive these days, and the price is almost sure to keep increasing. The average price for gas in the Washington DC metro area is about $3.60 which adds up to almost $2000 a year (based on a 15 gallon tank filling up three times a month at $3.60 a gallon).
  2. Reduce Traffic – Approximately 43% of people in the Washington DC Area drive to work alone, which equates to about 60,000 people each work week. If each of these people joined just one other person there would be about 30,000 less vehicles on the road every day. Imagine how much more quickly traffic would move with that many less vehicles on the road!
  3. Reduce Need for a Car – If you own more than one vehicle, carpooling can reduce your need for one of those vehicles so you can donate one of your unneeded cars to Goodwill. Or, even if you just own one car, joining a carpool may eliminate your need for a vehicle at all.
  4. More Convenient than Public Transportation – For some people, using public transportation to replace their donated vehicle is not a viable option because they do not live close enough to a train station or bus stop. However, joining a carpool can save you the hassle of trying to use public transportation because most carpools will be able to pick you up from your house.

Are you ready to donate your vehicle today? Give us a call at 866-492-2770 and we will make the donation process simple and easy for you. Plus, your donation is tax deductible!


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Blown Head Gasket

Monday, January 28th, 2013

One of the fist things people think about when their car breaks down is “How much am I going to have to pay to repair this?” Sometimes, the problem is very minor, while other times the car may need major repairs to start running again. Goodwill accepts donated vehicles that are running and non-running so if you find out that your car needs major repairs, donating the vehicle to Goodwill may be a great option for you.

One common problem that makes people consider donating their car is when the car needs a new head gasket. The head gasket is a part of the engine between the engine block and the cylinder head that seals the cylinders of a vehicle’s engine. It is important that the cylinders of the engine be sealed for two main reasons.

  1. The first reason is to maintain the engine’s compression because if the engine’s compression is low it will be difficult to start your vehicle and the engine will not run efficiently.
  2. The second reason is that sealing the cylinders prevents oil and coolant from leaking in to the cylinders.

Fixing a blown head gasket can be a very expensive because the repair can take about 7-9 hours. Including parts and labor, the repair job can end up costing $1200-$1600 depending on the type of vehicle and the shop you bring the car to.

Rather than paying for an expensive repair job, many people prefer to donate their vehicle to Goodwill when they find out it has a blown head gasket. Goodwill will arrange to have the vehicle picked up free of charge to the donor and the donor will receive documentation for a tax deduction. Plus, when you donate your vehicle to Goodwill, you will be helping to support a charity that helps community members by providing job training and employment programs.


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Beware of Car Title Loans

Friday, January 25th, 2013

A car title loan is a type of loan allows borrowers to put up their car as collateral in order to secure a loan.

If you find yourself in a tough financial situation, some may consider taking out a title loan on your vehicle. These types of loans are usually very easy to obtain but can come at a high cost. In most cases, you will be better off donating your vehicle to Goodwill for a tax deduction than taking out a title loan on the vehicle.

Here are some of the reasons why:

  1. Title loans are Short-Term Loans – Title loans are meant to be very short term and paid back within a short period of time, such as 30 days. However, many people find that the high interest rates in addition to the various fees lenders tack on (processing fees, paperwork fees, late payment fees, etc. ), it is nearly impossible to pay back the loan within the short period of time they are given and end up having to renew to loan again every month.
  2. High Interest Rates – Lenders cater to low-income borrowers because they know that a car title loan might be one of their only options for quick cash. Since lenders know that there is a good chance borrowers will not pay back the loan in full, the lender ensures that they will profit off of the loan by changing high interest rates. Most loans are given at interest rates from 80-300% per year. In other words, a car title loan with a 300% interest rate (which may be advertised by the lender as a 12% monthly compound rate) of a $1000 loan would accrue $3000 of interest in 1 year. If the borrower does wait a whole year to pay back the loan, they would be required to pay back the $1000 as well as the $3000 interest and any other fees the lender charges.
  3. Lenders Can Repossess Your Vehicle – If you miss even 1 payment on your title loan the lender has the ability to take your car away. Since the loan amount of a title loan is usually only in the amount of 50% of the vehicle’s value, the borrower is at a major disadvantage since they are at risk for losing their vehicle in exchange for a loan of only 50% of its value.

On the other hand, when you donate your vehicle to Goodwill, you will receive a tax deduction which you can use towards purchasing a new vehicle. The proceeds from donated vehicles go towards helping community members with disabilities and other disadvantages to find employment. Read more about the vehicle donation process here.


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