ATLANTA -- Now that Christmas gifts have been opened, and decisions made on what will be kept and what will be returned, it's time now to go through the house and figure out what will stay and what will go to charity.
A key is to make your donations by next Monday to get a tax deduction on this year's income tax.
A must is dealing with a reputable and known non-profit charity, recognized by the IRS.
MORE | Donation resource page
Getting that tax break is a motivation but not the only one.
"We come over with stuff we don't need, and we hope other people can use it. We do it before the end of the year...it comes off our tax return, "said Chip Franzoni, a donor to Goodwill of North Georgia.
When it comes to tax breaks, Jennifer Howard says, "It doesn't hurt, but it's nice to know that my stuff is used by somebody who probably needs it or would like to use it."
Best things to donate?
Shoes, books, CD's and DVDs, cell phones, computers and working kitchen appliances.
But Donald Woods of the Salvation Army says they are mainly looking for clothing.
"One of our greatest needs right now is clothing. We can use the furniture, we take cars, we take just about anything you want to get rid of, but mainly it's the clothing," he said.
Goodwill of North Georgia reminds donors to be careful before dropping things off.
"Check your pockets. Check the back pocket of your favorite jeans that you are intending to donate. Check luggage. Check purses. Make sure you clear all of those things out before you donate them," said Elaine Armstrong of Goodwill.
The IRS reminds donors to get receipts or have bank records to back up what you plan to deduct.