It’s a lot easier than you think

People either love plans so much that they never get past them, or hate plans and like to plunge right into whatever they are doing.

For nonprofits, planned giving means planning and moving beyond the planning and plunging into what has been planned. The result, then, is the giving.

Mike Patterson, a retired planned giving officer and freelance writer for Exempt, believes that nonprofit executives know more than they realize about planned giving, and that they can focus on a simple approach to planned giving that does not take them away from their other necessary responsibilities.

Patterson says that there are simple tools that can be used to launch a scaled-down planned giving initiative. They are:

  • Planned giving recognition society. This provides a vehicle to recognize those who have arranged deferred gifts. It is also a way to remind others that they can make a deferred gift.
  • Bequests. The executive’s function is to encourage donors to remember the organization in their plans and perhaps answer questions about how a potential bequest might be used.
  • Life insurance. A donor can select the organization as a beneficiary or give the organization a policy that can be cashed or used later.
  • Retirement plans. Donors arrange these types of gifts by contacting the administrator of their plans.
  • Financial service products. Donors can select the organization as the beneficiary through a payable-on-death provision. The organization would only receive the balance upon the donor’s death.