The Process of Selling Land in Minnesota

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The Process of Selling Land in Minnesota

Bart Waldon

With the total value of Minnesota’s farm real estate spanning over 79 million acres statewide approaching $70 billion according to 2023 USDA data, selling even small land parcels holds profit potential when marketed strategically. However, undeveloped recreational/hunting plots or overgrown homesteader acreages lacking updated drainage can prove challenging selling without adjustments maximizing appeal and raising buyer awareness widely.

This article outlines best practices optimizing results when prepping and listing Minnesota land parcels to fuel competitive bidding achieving sales efficiently.

Key Steps for Selling Land in Minnesota

Verify Ownership & Parcel Details

Before advertising land for sale, double check county records to validate current registered property ownership listed properly under your name or company allowing legal qualification selling the asset. Also gather plat maps with acreage surveys, flood plain status details and plot numbers for clear identification.

Evaluate Property Improvements Potential

Consider feasible enhancements adding future value like tree clearing expanding usable spaces on wooded lots, installing minor drainage upgrades opening more dry ground or subdividing larger plots ready for modular development phases once sold.

Research Recent Comparable Sales & Local Buyer Trends

Study surrounding land transactions in the county using public tax assessment data to gauge prevailing market rates for similar sized parcels aligned to classification whether crops, lake access or huntable woodlands. Also identify most active buyer demographics for the region between farmers, individual investors etc.

Craft Marketing Materials & Listings

Catalog all details into professional print brochures for in-person promotion. Create customized online listings on niche land sale platforms like Lands of America emphasizing all potential uses under current zoning allowances if multi-purpose. Load ground and regional aerial photos presenting attractively.

Advertise Listings 

  • Broadcast print brochures across suitable broker/investor networks countywide.
  • Leverage social media posts geo-targeting potential buyers browsing within a 50 mile radius.
  • Ensure online listings run on 5-10 niche land/property sites searchable by investors nationally through keyword queries.

Screen Prospective Buyers Carefully

Instead of simply allowing first-come purchases, qualify all interested parties completely upfront regarding precise intended usage aligned with property capabilities and local zoning laws before agreeing to sales. Require vision plans in writing.

Negotiate Win-Win Asking Prices & Terms

Consider creative offers involving unique partial parcel breakups or seller financing terms allowing buyers easier pathways toward eventual full ownership. Be flexible valuing deals benefiting communities longer term through thoughtful land utilization.

Close Sales Cautiously After Due Diligence

Even after handshakes, ensure buyers conduct full due diligence before closing sales. Complete soil tests analyzing drainage capacities, growth potential etc. Double check survey data. Insert contingencies like development benchmarks where relevant post-purchase. Prevention beats cure.

Why Sell Land in Minnesota?

Beyond liquidating assets providing immediate cash flow or funding other ventures, motivations benefiting current Minnesota landowners weighing sales include:

  • Capitalize on decade-plus property valuation increases
  • Avoid assuming growing county tax and maintenance costs
  • Prevent family estate disputes over unwanted shared inheritances
  • Unlock equity toward retirement or educational investments
  • Tap into strong demand from expanding farming operators

With interest rates projected rising and Midwest weather cycles swinging over a 7-10 year arc, marketing land strategically now can secure advantageous sales prices before added volatility emerges across markets ahead.

Alternatives to Traditional Land Sales

Alongside conventional facilitated sales through brokers possibly spanning months, direct dedicated buyer groups now exist specializing in quick cash closings buying Minnesota land as-is eliminating seller burdens staging properties or negotiating piecemeal. These provide straightforward paths monetizing unwanted assets.

Key Takeaways

When selling land in Minnesota, remember:

  • Verify parcel ownership alignments first before advertising
  • Improve land condition and presentation attractively
  • Advertise online listings with detailed descriptions widely
  • Qualify buyers closely to prevent issues post-purchase
  • Insert contingencies like development timeframes where possible
  • Consider all creative legitimate purchase offers or terms

While selling land remains complex, getting the highest sales price hinges on understanding true market worth based on property potential. Patience and persistence pay.

Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Land in Minnesota

Failing to Validate Full Ownership First 

Before listing any Minnesota land parcel for sale, double check county records to ensure the registered property ownership names match yours allowing legal qualification to sell the asset. Not validating details could make transactions invalid later. Also gather plot surveys and flood plain maps if relevant.

Setting Unrealistic Asking Prices 

Research recent land sale comps in your county first using public tax assessment data before setting a listing price. Overpricing acreage aligned to classification and location overly ambitious could deter potential buyers missing opportunities. Seek input from multiple experienced brokers weighing property potential.

Neglecting Land Condition Improvements 

Consider feasible fixes boosting appeal like clearing trees expanding usable spaces on wooded lots, installing minor drainage upgrades opening more dry ground or removing dilapidated structures and eyesores. Sweat equity boosts buyer perceived value. Walk the land from their eyes.

Skimping on Advertising and Listing Exposure 

Look beyond placing a single print ad in the Farmers Weekly circular. Maximize online visibility by listing the Minnesota land for sale through niche property sites like Lands of America searchable by investors everywhere. Leverage social media geo-targeting nearby buyer demographics within 50 miles.

Rushing Sales Without Vetting Buyers

Avoid simply allowing first-come, first-served sales. Qualify all prospective buyers upfront through discussions gauging precise intended property usage aligned with land capabilities based on soil tests and local zoning laws before closing deals. Require detailed plans.

Bypassing Contingencies and Follow-Up 

Even after signed purchase agreements, ensure buyers conduct full due diligence before closing sales including permits, tax preparations etc. Insert post-purchase contingencies like development benchmarks where relevant. Ongoing success with land requires collaboration.

Final Thoughts

Selling land in Minnesota means facing highly varied buyer appetites spanning farming enterprises to hunting enthusiasts to renewable energy developers. But preparing acreages methodically alongside aggressively marketing opportunities through both local and online channels unlocks deals. Savvy sellers weigh options balancing trade-offs like time versus money based on motivations. In many cases, partial sales or deal structuring creates mutual wins rather than all-or-nothing approaches. With the right partnerships and balanced expectations, MN landholders finalize sales optimizing outcomes for both current and future owners.

Frequently Asked Questions

What ownership records must I have available when selling Minnesota land? 

Have the most current land parcel deeds, plot surveys, and county registrations proving current names matched to listed owners ready to validate legal qualification status selling property.

What improvements help land sell faster in Minnesota? 

Basic drainage upgrades opening usable dry spaces, clearing trees/brush expanding usable acres and removing eyesore structures or debris boosts value perception and appeal among buyers motivate sales activity.

Where should I list Minnesota land for sale beyond local posts? 

Utilize niche land selling sites like Lands of America, Land and Farm and Farm Flip searchable by investors and buyers nationwide seeking parcels matching location and attributes priorities for faster matched sales.

What contingencies are advised when selling land in Minnesota? 

Consider insert post-purchase contingencies within sales contracts compelling buyers to commence clear land utilization plans like buildings or farming activity within 12-24 months to avoid ownership stagnation.

How can I estimate fair asking prices when selling land? 

Research recent land sales comps for comparable acreage and classifications in your county using public tax assessor records providing sales price data details to benchmark against when pricing appropriately attracting offers.

When do direct cash buyer deals make sense for landowners?

When wanting to exit ownership hassles of maintaining land immediately, direct cash sales through trusted land buying firms provide guaranteed exit strategies without assuming risks of traditional facilitated sales dependent on variable buyer types and uncertain timelines.

About The Author

Bart Waldon

Bart, co-founder of Land Boss with wife Dallas Waldon, boasts over half a decade in real estate. With 100+ successful land transactions nationwide, his expertise and hands-on approach solidify Land Boss as a leading player in land investment.


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