Bequest – A gift made by your will

A bequest costs nothing right now and can leave a lasting legacy for future generations. Once your family and friends are provided for, we hope you consider a legacy gift that supports families and individuals working toward their independence a part of your life story.

  • General bequest: If you intend to leave an outright gift of cash, securities or other property by designating a specific dollar amount, a particular asset or a fixed percentage of your estate to Habitat for Humanity to be used for general purposes:
    • “After taking care of all expenses, debts and other provisions, I give, devise and bequeath ___ percent of the rest and residue [or $___ if a specific amount] to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, [Tax ID# 58-1603427] ), a non-profit organization located in Chapel Hill, NC currently with administrative offices at 88 Vilcom Center Drive, Suite L110, Chapel Hill, NC, 27514.”
  • Specific bequest: If you intend to make an outright bequest for a specific purpose, such as to support advocacy or disaster response:
    • “I, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its charitable purposes, including but not limited to ___________ use and purpose.”
  • A residuary bequest gives the “rest, residue and remainder” of an estate, the balance after all other bequests, debts and taxes have been paid.
  • A contingent bequest requires a certain event to occur before the gift can be made. For example, you could bequeath funds to a family member provided that person survives you, and, if not, name Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC as the “contingent beneficiary.”
  • Contingency bequest: If you wish to make a contingency gift so that Habitat for Humanity will receive a portion of your estate if your named beneficiary does not survive you:
    • “If any of the beneficiaries named in this will should die before becoming entitled to receive their distributive share of my estate, I direct my trustee to pay or transfer the share to which such beneficiary would otherwise be entitled, to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC for its unrestricted use and purpose.”

If at any point in time and for any reason, you wish to make changes to include Habitat in your will, you can easily amend it by using a Codicil. A codicil is a document your attorney can prepare to amend your will or trust without rewriting the entire document. The codicil adds a new gift to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC while reaffirming the other terms of your will.

Life Insurance - Beneficiary designation

If you have a life insurance policy that has outlasted its original purpose, you can use it to fund a legacy gift while also enjoying tax savings during your lifetime.


  • Donate ownership and receive a charitable income tax deduction for the market value of the policy.
  • Receive additional tax benefits by making annual gifts so that we can pay the premiums.
  • Some donated policies can be cashed in and put to good use right away.
  • If you retain the policy and name us as beneficiary, the proceeds of your policy will be paid to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC, and your estate will receive the tax deduction from the charitable gift receipt.

Retirement Assets – Beneficiary designation


  • Reduce or eliminate taxes on retirement assets.
  • Remove highly taxable assets from your estate by direct beneficiary designation.
  • Reduce or avoid probate fees.
  • There is no cost to you now.

To name Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC as a beneficiary of your retirement plan, contact your bank or insurance company to see whether a change of beneficiary form must be completed.

Savings Bonds

If you have bonds that have stopped earning interest and that you plan to redeem, you will owe income tax on the appreciation. In the end, your heirs will receive only a fraction of the value of the bonds in which you so carefully invested. Since Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC is a tax-exempt institution, naming us as a beneficiary ensures that 100 percent of your gift will go toward families in need of decent, affordable housing.

Donor Advised Funds

You can create a grant recommendation from your donor-advised fund to support Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC.

Final distribution of contributions remaining in a donor-advised fund is governed by the contract you completed when you created your fund. We hope you will consider naming Habitat as a “successor” of your account. Or, you can name us as the successor for a portion of the account value, leaving the remaining portion for your heirs.

Gifts of Real Estate

You can turn the value of real estate into community good and receive financial and tax benefits with a gift to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC of real estate.  A rental house, vacation home or unimproved acreage can be gifted to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC for sale.  You avoid capital gains tax and the proceeds from the sale of the property will be used to support our work in the community.  A gift of only the ‘remainder interest’ in your personal residence to Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC while you and your family continue to live in and fully enjoy your home as long as you like can also produce a charitable deduction.  This is a retained life estate and works just as well with a farm or vacation home as with your principal residence. 

Gifts of Publicly-Traded Stock or Closely-Held Business Interests

Shares of appreciated publicly traded stock are an effective way to support Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC and avoid taxation on the gain.  We can receive stock gifts directly through your brokerage account; you receive a charitable income tax deduction, usually equivalent to fair market value as determined under IRS guidelines.  We will sell the stock immediately and apply the net proceeds toward our mission.

Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, NC will also consider gifts of closely-held business interests such as S corporations, limited liability companies, and limited partnerships if an acceptable means of converting the stock into liquid assets can be an anticipated within a reasonable time. This may occur through redemption agreements, liquidation or asset transfers.  These are complex transactions, so consultation with your tax advisor or planning professional is necessary.

To make a gift of stock, please contact:

David Henson, Financial Advisor
Wells Fargo Advisors
DTC Number: 0141
Account Number: 3956-6759