The costs incurred by a land trust in owning and operating a preserve vary greatly depending on the land trust’s plans for and activities on the land.
What should you do if a neighboring landowner encroaches on your organization’s property (e.g., builds a shed or extends their lawn) or otherwise uses the land without permission? Sometimes immediately booting them is the best answer; sometimes arriving at some accommodation that provides them with at least temporary permission makes more sense. Doing nothing invites trouble. (Print version of ConservationTools.org guide)
The Model Permission for Encroachment is a license agreement that allows an encroachment to continue until the owner withdraws permission. The model document also features owner protections from claims pertaining to injury or property damage, a requirement that the encroacher comply with the law, and the termination of any rights the encroacher may have to claim adverse possession.
Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy uses this spreadsheet to calculate stewardship costs for a fee-owned property with trails, a parking lot, signs, and other amenities.
The Stewardship Handbook is a compilation of the knowledge gained from the organization’s four decades of experience managing its 20,000-acre network of nature preserves in the region. The 220-page book serves as a resource for professional land managers and planners as well as to homeowners seeking to adopt a greener approach to caring for their properties.