A dozen things to know about bequests.

Fundraisers know that bequests are a very good source of financial support, and thus always looking for ways to improve those planned giving figures.

The donor most likely to leave a bequest is an older, long-time female donor who regularly volunteers, making frequent and substantial gifts, and with grandchildren, or an older female who doesn’t give to charity, does not volunteer and has no children, according to speakers during the during the recent National Catholic Development Conference (NCDC) Conference and Exposition.

Representatives of the Sharpe Group offered a variety of tidbits for anyone looking to maximize bequest gifts. They included:

90% of bequest donors will not tell the organization about the bequest prior to death;

Fewer still share the expected size of the gift;

Bequest donors live longer;

Most make estate gifts to six or seven organizations;

80% of bequest money comes from people aged 80 and older;

Older donors make larger estate gifts;

They trust gifts better than wills;

Residuary gifts are seven to 15 times larger;

Longer-term donors are great prospects. Frequent donors are great prospects as well;

Late-in-life first-time donors are good prospects;

Most key donor decisions are made in the last five years of life; and,

Bequests from non-donors are very common. As much as 20 percent of bequests are from non-donors.