App sale

Options for families who cannot manage their farmland but do not want to sell it

Placeholder while loading article actions

From time to time we share some of the feedback we receive on the columns.

Reader’s Comment: In your recent article discussing the sale of land belonging to a family, you did not mention any other option for people. When these owners do not know how to manage the land left to them, especially when it has some sentimental value and they do not want to sell it, the land can be leased or leased. Especially with farmland, someone else can farm the land or use it for grazing animals. This can be done between individuals or through a land management company.

I would recommend a land management company. You can find a freelancer or go through the trust service of a bank in the area where the land is located. Yes, there would be a management fee, but it often depends on the size of the land and the entity running the service. These companies generally do a better job of overseeing the tenant’s work on their behalf. An individual farmer may not keep the general condition in mind and make decisions only based on his interest.

More questions: Trusting the farm could be a solution to grandma’s thorny financial relationship with her son

Depending on where the 200 acres are for the person writing to you, they might be earning income from the property instead of selling it. We’ve done this for decades with land we own in Illinois, and it’s a very satisfying arrangement. The land stays in the family, we can earn an income, the profits are used to help maintain and improve the land for future use, and it will be there for other generations.

Ilyce and Sam answer: Thanks for the excellent suggestions. We hope our readers will find it useful.

Reader’s Comment: Just read your article on a house sold without septic installation. The buyer said that the seller was a building inspector and not a building inspector. They probably meant that the seller was working for the municipality and not for a private home inspector doing home inspections prior to purchase. Still, the seller should know if there was a septic tank. Believe it or not, determining if a home has a septic tank or municipal sewer is outside the scope of a home inspection.

Additionally, the listing agent may have “coached” the seller through the disclosure. I’m sure the smell of sewage wafts through the property on a nice hot day and everyone knew about it.

Why didn’t they do a septic inspection? An absolute must, even if it is an “as is” sale. The sales agent should have offered this (especially on an older home). Otherwise, I think it’s professional negligence. I just thought I’d throw in my two cents as a 30 year old ASHI [American Safety and Health Institute] certified building inspector.

More Matters: Options for bequeathing your property to your children

Ilyce and Sam answer: Thank you for your feedback. Whether the house was owned by a building inspector or a building inspector, either one should or should have known that their house had no septic system and raw sewage was pouring out of the property. We agree that the owner should have done a septic inspection.

You mentioned that building inspectors do not inspect septic tanks. It’s true. But in almost every home inspection report, Sam sees a note indicating whether the house has a septic tank or is serviced by a municipal system. No matter what type of inspection the buyer did, we believe the seller knew more than he shared. And the buyer ended up with the bag.

Ilyce Glink is the author of “100 questions every first-time home buyer should ask(Fourth Edition). She is also the Managing Director of Best Money Moves, an app employers provide to employees to measure and reduce financial stress. Samuel J. Tamkin is a Chicago-based real estate attorney. Contact them via the website,