8: Marketing Timber

Activities: Marketing Timber

How these activities will help you as a woodland owner:

This activity walks you through the process of marketing your timber.

Step 1: Determine Reasons for Harvest

Read the section entitled “Why Harvest Timber” and list the most important reasons why you would like to harvest timber within your forest or for a particular stand.  Those reasons are part of your management objectives which will help determine how the harvest is designed.

Step 2: Select a Forester

Read the section entitled “Selecting a Forester”. Use the Marketing Timber Checklist to help you select a forester and to evaluate a previously harvested site.

Step 3: Select Trees and Season for Harvest

Read the “Selecting Trees to Harvest” section so that you understand the relationship between your management objectives and the prescription a forester will recommend for removing trees.  Consider how the season of operations may impact your harvest by reading the “Determining Seasonal Timing of Harvest Operations” section on. Discuss your management objectives with your forester and agree on the type and amount of harvesting and the season of harvest that are most appropriate.

Consider how the season of operations may impact your harvest by reading the “Determining Seasonal Timing of Harvest Operations” section.

Step 4: Determine Worth of Timber

Read the section “Determining Timber Worth” to identify at least five potential factors which could impact the value of your timber.  Discuss these factors with your forester.

Step 5: Decide Your Preferred Method for Pricing Timber

The method by which your timber is priced (see “Methods of Selling Timber” section) will impact factors such as how much effort needs to be expended to assess the volume of timber you have to offer for sale and the ongoing administration of an active timber harvest as well as when payment(s) occur.  Discuss with your forester whether you should conduct a lump sum sale or a sale-by-unit arrangement.

Step 6: Create a Timber Sale Prospectus

Read the section “Creating a Timber Sale Prospectus”.  With the assistance of your forester, create a sale prospectus.

Step 7: Select a Buyer

Read the section “Selecting a Buyer” and think about the three ways in which you can sell your stumpage (single offer, oral auction, sealed bid auction).  What are the advantages and disadvantages of each method for you?  With your forester, determine which method is right for you.

Step 8: Prepare the Timber Sale Contract

Read the section “Preparing a Contract” and review the “Sample Timber Sale Contract”.  Determine the advantages of working with a forester and/or an attorney to write a timber sale contract.  If your forester or an attorney has a contract that they recommend, look specifically at the extent to which the items included within the Sample Timber Sale Contract are included in their contract.  If they are missing, is that acceptable to you?


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Woodland Stewardship: A Practical Guide for Midwestern Landowners, 3rd Edition Copyright © 2019 by University of Minnesota Extension is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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