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Photo: Dwellings

Photograph by Walter Meayers Edwards


If you own property that is fully paid off and has appreciated in value, an outright gift may be the simplest way to make a gift to National Geographic. A retained life estate allows you to transfer the deed of your home or farm to the Society today while keeping the right to use the property for your lifetime and that of your spouse. In the year that you make your gift, you will be entitled to an income tax deduction for a substantial portion of your home's value. By making the gift, you may reduce future estate taxes and probate costs.


How a Retained Life Estate Works

Under the terms of a retained life estate, you transfer your primary residence or farm to National Geographic. You continue to live in your home for as long as you choose and are responsible for your home's upkeep, property taxes, and other expenses. After you and your spouse pass away, the property transfers to National Geographic. Your home is then sold and the proceeds are used to support the Society’s mission.


Use our Planned Giving Calculator for a personal illustration of how life-income gifts can work for you.


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The information on our Web site is not intended as financial or legal advice. Please consult your own qualified advisers as you consider philanthropic gifts.


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Donor Stories

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    Grace Cleere

    “National Geographic shines a spotlight on the critical issues of the day and proposes innovative solutions that are grounded in science. I feel good about my legacy knowing that National Geographic will leverage my gift so it can have the greatest impact,” says Grace Cleere, who recently named National Geographic as a beneficiary in her will. Read More

Planned Giving Newsletter

Contact Us

National Geographic
Office of Gift Planning

1145 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036

Telephone: +1 202 862 8638
800 226 4438 (U.S. and Canada only)

Email: plannedgiftinfo@ngs.org

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Fax: +1 202 429 5709

Explorers Newsletter

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    Explorers A-Z

    At the heart of our explorers program is the quest for knowledge through exploration and the people who make it possible.

National Geographic News

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    Protecting the Last Wild Places in the Ocean

    In October, the Island nation of Palau approved the creation of an enormous marine reserve that's bigger than the U.S. state of California. In total the National Geographic Society’s Pristine Seas project, led by Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala, has now contributed to the protection of eight of the world’s largest marine reserves, protecting nearly three million square kilometers of ocean.