but I need some input. We are middle age, really active, have an expanding farm in very rural southern VA. Our kids are city kids and love their life. At some point, even with interns 10 months of the year, this will be too much for us. We've had incredible good fortune with interns & Wwoofers but at some point in the not too distant future we need to "partner" with a few folks. We have 100 acres in the middle of nowhere on a small forest river. We've kicked around "gifting" a parcel to a couple folks to build whatever to become part of what we're doing. Our kids have no desire to be farmers but it would be a crime for what we have built/grown to not continue. Our kids love coming to visit and "breath", but I doubt will have any desire to come and work/continue this place. Has anyone out there put a transition or partial ownership plan together? I'd love to hear ideas and thoughts.
While I don't have personal experience with this sort of thing, I have heard of people who would lease out a portion of their land and get to know those who were leasing. They would do interviews with those who were considering it and decide who to offer the lease to. Once there, it was a sort of probationary period where they lived on the plot and if their ideals aligned, they would then be offered additional land for full purchase. I don't know how those worked out though, as I have mostly heard about them second hand or through random postings where there was no follow-up on some other forums.
I got a call about a month ago from a Venture Capital Group - they are buying existing organic farms & leasing them back to the "young" farmers. On the surface, I appreciate VC pumping needed funds into the hands of young farmers, going deeper, with the failure rate of new/young farmers, I don't like it 1 bit. I think we are looking for more of a "life lease" or partership - the bulk of this land is forest aka about 75% and I don't want that to change. It's a very interesting exploration.
Marianne Cicala wrote:I got a call about a month ago from a Venture Capital Group - they are buying existing organic farms & leasing them back to the "young" farmers. On the surface, I appreciate VC pumping needed funds into the hands of young farmers, going deeper, with the failure rate of new/young farmers, I don't like it 1 bit. I think we are looking for more of a "life lease" or partership - the bulk of this land is forest aka about 75% and I don't want that to change. It's a very interesting exploration.
My suggestion is to NEVER.EVER.EVER involve "capital" groups or ANYBODY who is trying to make money for themselves or other people. The concept of permaculture puts money last by necessity. Once you take care of the land and the people, the money comes if you have done it correctly. It HAS to be last.
Location: Colorado @ 7000 feet. zone negative 87b
posted 5 years ago
Oh, what I meant to post before I saw your bit about the VC group is that I would consider looking into some sort of covenant sale of half of your land (or however much). Unless you divest yourself of it, you'll always be stressing over how it's being used and not truly "free" of the burden. This is not the best financial advice, but it's good permaculture advice... You create a trust for the parcel you'd like to section off. This trust owns the land (not you) and has covenants that it can never be parceled further, only one road in, one well, etc. - details that you cook up to prevent it being ruined. Then you can sell that at reduced price (due to the use limitations and desire to not further the bankster's inflationary evil) to a person whom you've vetted as worthy of having it. Doing something as simple and retaining all water rights by covenant deed could prevent developers from wanting it. Just some rough ideas.
I would think that Bill Mollison or Geoff Lawton could offer some really interesting ideas along these lines, if you contacted them directly and offered to pay them for the advice - which would be solid gold, I think.