The East Quabbin Land Trust has been involved in a variety of land protection projects since its inception in 1994. We have worked with land owners to help plan and accomplish conservation projects that meet their goals and financial needs. Landowners who wish to protect their land have a variety of ways to turn their dreams for their land into reality.
- Conservation Restriction: A CR is a permanent legal agreement between a landowner and a conservation organization whereby the landowner retains ownership of the land but surrenders the right to develop the land. CR’s are permanent and remain in effect when the land is sold or inherited. A Stewardship Management Plan will define the long term goals for the property. For more questions and answers check out the Frequently Asked Questions.
- Gift of Land: A landowner’s gift of property to a land trust is protected and managed in accordance with the donor’s wishes. Landowners who protect their land through a gift to EQLT will want a comprehensive Stewardship Management Plan to define their long term goals for the property.
- Sale of Land: In certain instances, a property may include important natural resources that might compel a land trust to purchase the parcel at fair market value. If the landowner sells the land for a reduced cost this is called a bargain sale, resulting in a tax deduction for the value donated.
- Retained Life Estate: landowners may donate property to a land trust and retain a life interest for themselves and their family. This option allows them to live and use their land for their lifetime but assured that the land will be protected forever.
- Limited Development: A land conservation option that protects the ecologically sensitive portion of the property while allowing for development of other areas.
- Bequest: A gift of land, cash or securities through a will or comprehensive estate plan allows for a reduction of inheritance taxes while accomplishing protection of family lands or additional conservation projects of the land trust.
Check with your attorney to see if several options can be combined for increased tax benefits.
The intention of the East Quabbin Land Trust is to understand the goals, needs and circumstances of the landowner. Please contact Cynthia Henshaw, Executive Director at the EQLT office for more information about how we can help you decide the best possible way for you to protect your land.