The situation 

Dennis and Margaret* were preparing for retirement in their home state of California. After years of raising a family and owning and operating a successful vineyard, they looked forward to enjoying retirement with fewer responsibilities. 

No longer interested in running their wine business, the couple decided to sell the vineyard. Recent conversations with several local real estate agents had led them to realize that they could expect to sell the vineyard for an attractive price. Since purchasing their property more than 30 years before, the 50-acre vineyard had appreciated considerably in value. It was the perfect solution for financing their retirement.

Dennis and Margaret had long been active in their local community—donating to nonprofits, hosting fundraisers in their winery and promoting sustainability within the winemaking community. As employers, they were committed to paying their vineyard workers a living wage and providing healthcare benefits for their employees’ families.

It should come as no surprise, then, that the couple decided to donate a portion of the vineyard’s proceeds to organizations that supported the local economy, education and the environment.

So Dennis and Margaret reached out to their J.P. Morgan advisor for ideas about how to make the most of their gift. That’s how they learned about setting up a donor-advised fund account with the Private Bank.

Our approach 

Working closely with their J.P. Morgan advisor, the couple decided to donate a 20% interest in their vineyard to a donor-advised fund (DAF). 

Unlike other types of donations, when you give to a DAF, you can donate illiquid assets—including real estate. The couple chose to set up their fund with J.P. Morgan’s Charitable Giving Fund. 

And because Dennis and Margaret’s advisor suggested they donate a percentage of the vineyard before its sale, they were able to qualify for a tax deduction while reducing the amount of their gain subject to tax by 20%.

By setting up a DAF account through J.P. Morgan, Dennis and Margaret were able to save more money for their retirement and grant out more money to local organizations. 

“Our neighbors and this county supported our business and family, helping both to grow and thrive,” Margaret told her Private Bank team after the sale. “We are thrilled and honored to give back to the part of the country and the people we love.’’