The IRS allows tax deductible donation expenses from your federal income taxes for donations made to charity. These donations can reduce your taxable income and lower your tax bill. Not everyone will be able to deduct their charitable contributions, however. You will need to itemize your tax deductions in order to claim any charity.
Any deduction for items donated is based on the fair market value of those items. In order to ensure a proper paper trail, be sure to get a receipt from the charitable organization to authenticate your donations. Consider taking a picture of your donations. In the rare event you are audited, the IRS may distrust your written documentation. Having a picture handy of what you donated may be useful, especially if you are donating lots of items.
The government provides guidance on various categories of donated items that can be deducted. Click here to view the document. In addition, the Salvation Army has published a helpful valuation guide for donated items. Click here to view the guide.