I'd like to fix up and sell computers for charity...
April 25, 2010 12:15 AM Subscribe
I'd like to fix up and sell old computers for our charity committee. What sort of red tape need I concern myself with?
posted by aydeejones to computers & internet (16 answers total)
My employer has a charity committee that raises money through a variety of means. We have a pool of various charities, many of which are local and constantly looking for more donations.
I love fixing up old computers and getting them to run smoothly.
I love Ubuntu Linux but also love Windows XP. So I'm thinking of asking my fellow employees (and perhaps folks on CraigsList) to donate their old computers to me, at which point I will fix them up if they are salvageable and donate the proceeds to our committee. Ideally the donors will provide all of the OEM software so I can install Windows, and if not, I'll go ahead with Ubuntu. I don't think licensing is an issue as long as I'm using the original OEM licenses with the original machines...
What I'm wondering is how much I need to cover myself legally. Do I need to talk to a lawyer about this? I'm interested in providing a tax-writeoff receipt to everyone who donates a computer and successfully sells it through me. I think this will motivate people to donate pretty decent machines. And there's certainly a chance I will burn out and at some point just have a stack of them sitting around for awhile until I get around to it again. I know the computers themselves can be donated but I'd like to invest my own time and energy into making them run smoothly, installing antivirus, bumping up the RAM, etc, adding value through my labor.
One simple option would be to fix them up for my own personal profit, and decide myself how much to contribute to charity, but I really like the idea of having the writeoff receipt go to the person who provided the machine. I might have to subtract any value I add with my labor and parts...?
If it's too complicated to provide the tax receipt I'll certainly skip that. I live and work in Jefferson County, Colorado. I know that we can't write off our own computer donations to charity as an organization because our workstations are scheduled to completely depreciate in 5 years and we never pitch a computer until it's at least that old.
Thanks for any help you can offer!