Options for Land Owners

Conservation Tools & Strategies for Protecting Open Space & Farmland

  • Bargain Sale - Sale / conveyance of title to land or development rights to a charitable organization at less than fair market value.
  • Clustering - Land subdivision / proposed development is clustered on portion of property to protect open space.
  • Conservation Easement - Landowner voluntarily decides to restrict use of property with high conservation value while still retaining ownership. Can provide tax advantages and/or tax abatement provided that easement is long term or perpetual.
  • Fee Simple Acquisition / Fair Market Value - Outright purchase of full title to land at fair market value.
  • Like-Kind Land Exchange - Tax-free land transaction whereby public agency or non-profit conservation organizations exchanges like-kind land, able to be developed, with property targeted for protection.
  • Limited Development / Reduced Density - Property is subdivided at a reduced density to better protect open space. Can provide tax advantages, reduced infrastructure building costs, and enhanced marketability.
  • Other Land Conservation Options - Land conservation is fostered by combining various land protection tools and/or by designing other site-specific preservation arrangements.
  • Outright Land Donation - Donation, by landowner, of all or partial interest in property.
  • Purchase of Development Rights - Landowner sells all or part of a property's development rights to municipality or non-profit conservation organization, while still retaining ownership and the right to certain land uses such as farming.
  • Tax-Exempt Installment Sale - A long-term contract to sell property or associated development rights can be negotiated between the landowner and municipality and/or non-profit organization, providing significant tax relief.
  • Transfer of Development Rights - Landowner can transfer the property's development rights to another parcel of land and/or sell the development rights to other landowners whose property can support increased density.