A variety of tools are available that allow you to donate land to the land trust and receive financial benefits. Flexibility is the key. If you are interested in making a land donation, we suggest that you contact the land trust to explore your options. We recommend that you retain an attorney who will represent your interests during discussions with the land trust. Options for donation land include:
Contact us with questions:
Phone: (860) 963 2090
Click to open Connecticut Land Conservation Council's information booklet Protecting the Land You Love
If you own all of the present and future rights to a property, that proper is owned in “Fee Simple”. No one else has rights to the property. If you bequeath or donate fee simple title to the Land Trust, the entire value of the property will be considered for any possible tax deduction. The Land Trust will work with the land donor to consider potential qualifications and the wishes of the donor related to the future preservation of the property.
In many cases, the land trust cannot afford to purchase land for conservation at the current market value. A bargain sale, in which you sell your land at less than its fair market value, may provide a win-win solution; to protect and preserve your land, provide some compensation for you, and make the land adequately affordable for the Land Trust. The differential between the sale price and the fair market value could potentially be tax deductible.
A life estate can be a useful tool for estate planning. A life estate allows you to live on and use your property for the rest of your life while simplifying and streamlining the transfer of your property to the Land Trust upon your death. Certain duties remain with the holder of the life estate, such as maintaining the property, paying taxes and paying mortgage interest. The Land Trust becomes the owner of your property upon your death (or that of any specified beneficiaries), and your estate may possibly receive a charitable deduction equal to the value of the property.
A conservation easement is a legal document between you and the Wyndham Land Trust that permanently limits the allowable uses of the land in order to protect its conservation values. An easement remains an encumbrance on the property title and allows you to conserve your land without relinquishing your right to pass it on to your heirs. In addition, you may receive significant estate, income and/or property tax benefits. The land trust and the donor must agree on the wording of a conservation easement in advance.