Selling timber | Living the Country Life

Selling timber

The mature trees on your property might be worth some money
Photo courtesy University of Missouri

Part of a forest management plan often involves marketing the mature trees. You can make a lot of money from your woodland. However, do not have a timber sale by yourself.  Most people don’t know the value of their trees and can easily be taken advantage of.

Jesse Randall is an extension forester at Iowa State University. He says state or university forestry personnel have free or low-cost services to help you get information about the value of your timber. They will also put you in touch with a professional forestry consultant to take you through the sale process.

The consultant will notify potential buyers of the timber sale, and those interested in your trees will offer a lump-sum sealed bid. Randall says all bids are returned on the same day at the same time, and opened at the same time.

"High bid always wins. This allows all of the timber buyers to look at the same trees so you’re comparing apples-to-apples," says Randall. "This process breaks down if you open the bid early and tell the logger you really want to have get the sale what that high bid is. That’s not right. That’s why working with a consulting forester who knows the process, and who knows the good loggers from the bad loggers is important."

Randall says it’s also important to protect yourself with a sale contract.

"Every consulting forester has their own sale contract that’s been vetted by their own lawyers. They’re your agent, they’re also your nasty guy if that logger is not doing what you wanted. They’re damaging too many things, they’re not putting it to sleep like it should, they can stop the logger from working," says Randall. "That takes a lot of the pressure off of you."

What a timber buyer will pay depends on many variables such as the species, size and quality of the trees, and conditions of the site.

Find a state forester in your area

Learn more about determining the worth of your trees and the timber selling process

Listen here to the radio mp3

Latest Blogs

Betsy's Backyard |
5/25/18 | 11:05 AM
My daughter, Caroline, said she missed my blog, so I'm going to download a few more
Betsy's Backyard |
3/12/18 | 1:18 PM
The Living the Country Life Spring/Summer 2018 issue comes out this month. I loved more

Add Your Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Login