For the millions of hunters across the nation, finding just the right spot for their activity can sometimes be more than a bit trying.
As more and more open land becomes shopping centers, new housing and apartment developments, and restaurants and other such businesses, hunters find themselves running out of land to hunt on in many towns across the country. As a result, they are sometimes left having to go hours from their homes for one of their favorite sports.
With that in mind, it isn’t uncommon these days to see more landowners in the northeast and elsewhere renting out portions of their property (oftentimes farmland) to hunters.
If you want to rent out some or all of your property (including farmland) to hunters, remember these tidbits:
- Agreements – First and foremost, make sure you divvy up a contract, making it clear what both sides agree to. While renting out land to hunters is oftentimes a win-win for both landowner and hunter or hunters, disagreements can occur. Make it clear from the start what is and isn’t allowed in terms of hunting on your land. Part of that agreement will be the fee charged to permit individuals to hunt on your land. A verbal agreement among friends is one thing, but given there is a very good chance you will be renting out the land to strangers, make sure you draw up a contract to specify the costs and other pertinent details involved;
- Licenses – Even though you are of course not issuing licenses to hunters, make sure anyone hunting on your land is properly licensed. Whether it is deer season, turkey season, bear season or whatever the time of year it is, all hunters on your land need to have their licensing documents up to date;
- Legalities – When you have anyone on your land for any reason, always be cognizant of potential injuries. While you likely go out of your way to make the land safe and free of hazards, someone can easily take a spill or worse. With the right personal liability plan in place, you can cover yourself, your family, and of course your property from major losses. Also check with anyone hunting on your land about their personal insurance coverages;
- Location – If you own a significant amount of farmland, you stand a much better chance of getting hunters interested in renting or leasing out your property at times during the year for game shooting. Farmers who live in rural areas nationwide from New England states to Tennessee to Washington State, stand a much better chance of attracting hunters, though that does not mean farmers in more heavily populated areas can’t do this too. In order to spread the word about hunting possibilities on their lands, farmers can tout their locations through social media. From posts on Facebook and Twitter to pictures on Instagram and even videos on YouTube, farmers should not hesitate to publicize what they can offer hunters. Any social networking efforts should be posted regularly, though don’t come across as desperate in trying to rent or lease out your land. When it comes to the videos, while you do not need to spend lots of money and have them professionally done, do make sure that they accurately describe what you have to offer (see more below), showing off why the land stands out from other such offers;
- Opportunities – Farms across America come in all different shapes and sizes. Some are spread out for miles and others are much more contained. When renting or leasing out your farmland for hunting experiences, determine ahead of time how much of the property will be available for such usage. It is important that you take into consideration how close your neighbors are to the property you would be renting out. Some in the neighborhood may have questions and/or concerns about such activities, so keep them in mind when making decisions. Yes, while it is your land to do what you want with it, the last thing you want is starting a battle with one or more neighbors, especially if one or more of them are not all that into hunting.
Whether it is to improve one’s financial standing or just for the love of having others enjoy all that hunting brings with it, those individuals looking to rent out their lands to hunters are proving more game.