If a landowner needs immediate income and is considering selling his or her land, but would like the property to be permanently protected, selling the land or a conservation easement to CLC through a bargain sale might be an ideal situation, provided CLC can raise the funds.
In a bargain sale, a landowner sells land or a conservation easement to CLC for less than its appraised, full fair market value. A bargain sale makes a conservation project more affordable for CLC and offers several tax benefits to the landowner. It provides cash at the closing of the sale, reduces capital gains tax by reducing the amount of income generated from the sale, and entitles the seller to a charitable income tax deduction based on the difference between the land’s fair market value and its purchase price.
Bargain sales help CLC carry out a variety of land protection projects. For example, the High Falls Conservation Area was purchased through a bargain sale arrangement that enabled the landowner to take advantage of tax benefits and receive some desired income for the sale of the property.