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Tools & Resources for Working with Farms with Commercial Agricultural Potential

How do commercial farm buyers differ from other rural property buyers?

Many real estate professionals have a sincere interest in seeing working farms stay in production, and seek insights and guidance about how to market farms or farmland with commercial potential. Farm seekers are growing more sophisticated, and a primary tool that many farm seekers use in their farm search is the MLS and other real estate listings.

Land For Good seeks to raise awareness and provide education and support to real estate professionals to improve the conditions under which many aspiring, beginning and established farmers seek land. This training, entitled Tools and Resources for Working with Farms with Commercial Agricultural Potential, aims to better connect real estate professionals and commercial farm buyers.

Farm aerial view -target realtors“There are many ways that farm buyers and sellers connect. Many farms are sold by word-of-mouth or via long-term relationships between the buyer and seller,” says Mike Ghia, VT Field Agent for Land For Good. “Others are offered publicly as for sale-by-owner, increasingly with the help of tools such as Vermont Land Link and New England Farm Finder. Licensed real estate agents also have an important role to play in farm purchase and sales.” Read more on our blog

This training helps real estate licensees identify characteristics of the commercial farm buyer, plus how to reach them, identify & describe property characteristics important to the commercial farm buyer, introduce legal and tax issues of specific relevance to farms, identify farm financing options, and outline conservation easements and issues which need to be considered when selling farms that have existing conservation easements.

Contact us to learn more about this training or propose a training session to your area. If you’re in Vermont, contact for a consultation. If you’re in New Hampshire, contact Elsewhere in New England, contact LFG through our website or email Our staff is available to help.

Following are the materials for training participants.

Course Description
Online Resources & Links
Tutorial of the Vermont Natural Resources Atlas – A Resource for Farm Mapping
GranitViewII Tutorial – A Resource for Farm Mapping
Farm Rental Assessment Checklist
Benefits of Farmland Conservation
Selecting a Conservation Strategy
Conservation Easements Frequently Asked Questions
Synopsis of a Conservation Easement Deed
Enhanced Federal Incentives for Land Conservation
Selling a Farm with a Conservation Easement that Includes an Option to Purchase at Agricultural Value (OPAV)
An Example of a Sale of a Farm Restricted by an Option to Purchase at Agricultural Value (OPAV)
Conservation Land For Sale Checklist

All materials are subject to copyright.

With special thanks to the following individuals and agencies for assistance in developing these tools and resources:
Mike Ghia, Vermont Field Agent, Land For Good
Ben Waterman, New Farmers for New American Program Coordinator, UVM Center for Sustainable Agriculture
Jon Ramsey, Director of Farmland Access Program, Vermont Land Trust
Peg Merrens, VP Conservation, Upper Valley Land Trust

Editor’s note: LFG will be repeating this training in NH and in other New England states.