Do Your Homework

2013 Dream award judging ballentine

Guest post by Anna D of Indiana

I had an “AHA Moment” when a lumber mill owner and his  forester personally approached me in my woods and offered me compensation for timber at that moment. They were knowledgeable about my woods and were prepared to make me an offer. They had already “visited” my woods (trespassed) to check out the timber. I was completely surprised and went on the defensive because I realized how clueless I was about the value of the timber on the land, the overall market for timber, and the attributes of the land and timber that could affect a sale. I was at a complete disadvantage because I was not prepared with information. 

I took immediate action.  I researched on the Internet and found an organization that I felt would provide valuable education and resources for me (Indiana Forestry & Woodland Owners Association) and had a realistic position about the responsible and sustainable management of woodlands and backed up the position with objective academic research.  My association with IFWOA has been nothing but positive and I am much more informed about my options and comfortable that I am on a much better course of action now, than I was a few years ago. I also hired a forester who is now familiar with my property and can supply valuable advice for the long term.

Advice:  Research first.  Write all questions out beforehand.  ASK if you don’t understand something or have questions.