Everything Landowners Should Know About Selling Timber



by Caroline Kirby

One way that landowners look to make some extra income is by selling timber off of their property; especially in farm woodlots and rural woodlands. If you own acres or a larger residential lot you may be a good candidate for timber harvesting. Whether you’re looking to clear a piece of your lot and sell once or make it a regular practice here’s what you need to know about using your property to sell timber.

Landowner’s Guide to Selling Timber

Before making any moves at all you need to know where the property lines are, if you accidentally cut a tree that’s on neighboring property you could run into legal issues. You can find property lines on your deed, if you want a professional opinion hiring a forester will be your best option.

1. Work with a Professional Forester:

This is the golden rule of selling timber, you may have heard horror stories of landowners that were scammed or had loggers that didn’t respect their land. Save yourself time and trouble by getting references from forestry professionals and timberland owners, ask about qualifications or any certifications, require insurance for the loggers and crew, and sign a contract. Doing all of the above can protect you from serious issues down the road.

2. Make a Plan:

Once you’ve hired a professional you trust, work with them to develop a forest management plan. This will help you utilize your land in the most beneficial way as well as identify goals that your forester can work towards. Some objectives could be reducing overcrowding, salvaging damaged trees, creating a wildlife habitat, or even creating vistas or trails. Talk with your forestry professional to get a better understanding of all viable options.

3. Familiarize Yourself with your Timber:

If you want to get what you deserve you should get to know your timber. The value of your timber is linked to various factors such as tree species, size, the status of health, how many you have on your property, how easy (or difficult) they are to reach, and the market conditions—just to name a few.

4. Advertise to Buyers:

Take your time with this step, otherwise you may lose out on what your timber is really worth. Reach out to potential buyers through your forester, they’ll have an idea of serious buyers as well as the likelihood of them making a purchase. Your forester will send a timber sale notice making the process easier and faster for you.

Making your way into the timber scene requires some planning and patience, but doing so could result in lasting success and reliable income. Trees are a valuable resource and when land is managed properly you can earn hundreds of dollars per acre each year. Looking for the right property to start selling timber? Find Timberland properties for sale here (or list your own property) on LandHub.com.

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