Conservation Easements Procedural Steps -- Part II (Continued from page 6)
Landowners should seek to not only retain rights for current land uses, but also to have the flexibility to allow for future changes in operations. In addition, landowners should consider future borrowing power, impacts of increasing property taxes, and conditions under which the terms of the conservation easement can be modified or invalidated. The receiving entity will seek to specify meaningful and enforceable restrictions relevant to its mission.
inform anyone who has interest in the property.
Obtain a property appraisal To qualify for certain tax benefits, a current property appraisal is needed.
Conservation easements are legally binding agreements, not just for the current land owner, but for the future owners of the property also. Therefore, they should be entered into with great care and thought.
Execute and record the documents
Conservation easements must be executed by all current owners of the property. They are publicly recorded with other land records. Mortgage holders must consent in writing to the easement, and this too must be recorded. It is also prudent to
Conservation easements do offer an attractive way to preserve current land uses for future generations, however. Plus they can offer a potential source of income and possible property, income, and estate tax benefits now.
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