Sale Preparation & Marketing
Our primary work involves sale preparation and marketing of timber for landowners to insure they sell the proper trees, in the proper market and get the maximum income from the trees they sell. This is generally done in a sealed bid situation. We maintain an extensive list of reputable timber buyers who frequently bid on our sales. Biders vary from some of the largest timber companies, such as International Paper Company and Weyerhaeuser, to local contractors. Our goal is to get the highest possible price for the products being sold, while protecting the remaining timber for future income.
The majority of our sales are selective thinnings. When practical, tracts are selectively thinned, removing trees that are defective, crowded or mature, leaving the best trees properly spaced to grow at their potential. In some cases, only smaller and defective trees are removed to allow the best possible growth of the remaining good trees. In other cases, large, mature trees are removed to allow the remaining, young vigorous trees the proper room to grow at their potential. In all instances, the goal is to properly space the remaining trees for proper growth.
When we handle a timber sale for a landowner, our services include: Preparing the timber for sale, conducting a sale in a sealed bid situation, seeing that a mutually agreeable sales contract is prepared, oversee the closing of the sale, and inspecting the harvesting operation to see that the terms of the sales agreement are met.
The picture below is of a native loblolly pine stand that has been thinned twice. The first thinning, about 10 years before this picture was taken, involved removing primarily inferior trees and spacing the remaining trees for their best growth. The second thinning, about 3 years before the picture was taken, removed predominately large sawlogs and scattered defective trees. The long range goal is to harvest all of the remaining timber in approximately 5 years, (provided the market is strong) and replant the entire area. This stand has been treated with herbicide to control unwanted species.
Volume and Value Estimation
Most landowners are not equipped to estimate the volume or value of the timber they may want to sell. In a selective thinning, each tree is tallied by diameter and according to its highest merchantable value. If all merchantable timber is to be sold, the sale area is cruised and a volume estimate made. A minimum bid is established before the timber is offered for sale. This insures that the landowner does not sell his timber below market value.
A Forestry Consultant that keeps tabs on the market fluctuations can greatly increase the income from a timber sale by conducting the sale in a strong market. Timber prices vary greatly for a large number of reasons. Constant observations of the local markets are necessary to determine the best time to conduct a timber sale.
Part of our responsibility is to see that a mutually agreeable sales agreement is prepared between the owner and the buyer. Our obligation is to protect the owners remaining timber and timberland, protect him from liability during the logging operation, and see that the requests of the owner are included in the sales agreement.
After a sale is made, we supervise the harvesting operation to see that all requirements of the sales contract are being met. When possible, we meet with the landowner and the logger near the end of the harvesting operation to see that all obligations have been met. When the landowner cannot be present, we act on their behalf, and report to them.