CVaLC works closely with both government and private organizations that are qualified to hold conservation and open-space easements in Virginia. We endeavor to help landowners find the organization that best suits their goals in the process of placing conservation easements on their land.
The most effective tool to permanently protect Virginia’s irreplaceable resources is a conservation easement. A conservation easement is a voluntary legal agreement between a landowner and a land trust or government agency that permanently limits uses of the land in order to protect its conservation values.
Benefits to landowners:
You determine the terms of the easement. Your easement is structured to fit your goals while ensuring the important resources remain intact and that the property is protected in perpetuity. You continue to farm, harvest timber, hunt, fish and enjoy other compatible land uses. Land protected by a conservation easement can be sold or passed on to heirs.
An easement may provide a landowner generous tax benefits. The easement's value is considered a charitable gift donation and is deducted on your state and federal income tax. Transferable state tax credits are available.
Your land is one of the most important and valuable possessions you own. The decisions you make regarding its current and future use will have long-term consequences for both your family and community. Land conservation can provide a priceless gift to future generations while fully supporting continuing farm, forestry and family use. A recent study conducted by the Trust for Public Land in partnership with The Nature Conservancy and VIRGINIAforever, shows that for every $1 invested by the state in land conservation, $4 in natural goods and services is returned to Virginia’s economy. (Trust for Public Land, Virginia’s Return on Investment in Land Conservation)