Did you know the FM Area Foundation provides “regret mitigation” services? We’re only half kidding! Not surprisingly, financial regrets are common, with those related to personal finances among the most frequent. Of recently surveyed American retirees, 75% wished they’d started saving earlier, and 62% wished they’d saved more money for their golden years.
On the personal side of the equation, people frequently also regret failing to show kindness when someone was in need. These types of regrets can be uncovered in the flipside of the well-documented motivations for giving in the first place. In short, people want to help others, and upon reflection, they often regret not doing so.
The topic of regret is getting much play. In his 2022 book, The Power of Regret: How Looking Backward Moves Us Forward, Daniel Pink describes the results of his years of research on human regret. Pink identifies different types of regret and offers readers the perspective that not all regrets need to act as negative forces if they inspire you to behave differently moving forward.
The experienced team at the FM Area Foundation can help you avoid charitable giving regrets, especially by making it easy for you to activate your philanthropic intentions in the most tax-effective ways possible to make an even bigger difference in the causes you care about.
Get organized with a donor-advised fund.
If you’ve already established a donor-advised fund at the FM Area Foundation (or if you are considering doing so!), you know that the FM Area Foundation handles all of the logistics, including providing 501(c)(3) status for your fund so that your contributions are tax-deductible, facilitating your contributions to the fund in the form of cash or stock, processing disbursements to your favorite charities, and handling all of the necessary tax documentation. A donor-advised fund makes organizing and maximizing your charitable giving so much easier.
Grow your philanthropy through planned giving.
In many cases, the FM Area Foundation can help identify ways you can support your favorite charities at even higher levels than you thought possible by deploying planned giving techniques such as bequests and charitable remainder trusts. For example, designating your fund at the FM Area Foundation as the beneficiary of your IRA is especially powerful.
Rally other fund holders and donors.
If you’ve established a field of interest or designated fund at the FM Area Foundation, don’t forget that you can rally friends and family to join you in growing that fund. Philanthropic individuals and families are often open to new ideas about where to invest their charitable dollars. Many people look to the FM Area Foundation as a point of validation that the IRS’s boxes have been checked and for peace of mind knowing that the fund benefits from the oversight and advocacy of a dedicated community institution. What’s more, it’s rewarding as a fund holder to get to know other fund holders and donors who are involved with the FM Area Foundation and who also want to explore ways they can support the various funds featured in the FM Area Foundation’s marketing materials and on its website.
If you wish you’d been able to do more for your favorite causes earlier in your life, there’s no need to hold onto those regrets! The FM Area Foundation can help you build a charitable giving plan to reflect a lifetime of strong commitment to the organizations in our community. We look forward to working with you!