1. Landowner and consulting forester meet and go over the goals for the project.
2. I establish the boundary lines, and begin the marking process. Trees are marked according to your specifications, although I usually recommend a single-tree selective timber harvest as the best method.
3. Once the marking is completed, I analyze the data and determine the value of the marked timber. You are sent a copy of this appraisal for your records.
4. I prepare a prospectus to be sent to mills to solicit their bids. I then hold a "showing" at a predetermined time for any mills who'd like to discuss the sale with me further. If your sale is small I may negotiate the sale on your behalf without the formal mailing.
5. I evaluate the bids at my office at a predetermined date and time. Bids can be faxed, texted, mailed, or phoned in.
6. I make recommendations to you regarding the bids -- accept or reject?
7. If the high bid is acceptable, I proceed with item # 12 below.
8. If all bids are unacceptable, I contact the highest bidder and ask them to come up to my appraised value.
9. If highest bidder refuses to come up, I may go to second highest bidder, etc.
10. If bidders refuse, I will contact other mills with good reputations and markets.
11. Once a buyer is found, I proceed to step # 12 below.
12. You receive 10% of the sale price (the bid deposit) for immediate deposit into your bank.
13. I prepare the contract between you and the timber buyer. The contract includes the Erosion and Sedimentation control (E&S) plans for the sale and any necessary permits (required by the DER), which I prepare. The buyer has 10 days to close the contracts from the bid date.
14. I give you a rough copy of the contract and recommend your lawyer review it (this expense, which is usually less than $300.00, is yours to pay your attorney).
15. Once any changes are made and the contract is approved by you and/or your attorney, I provide two copies of the contract to the buyer for his signatures.
16. The buyer signs both copies of the contract and E&S plan and returns them to me, along with a check for the remaining balance of the sale price. NOTE: If your timber sale is large, I may decide to divide the sale and payments into blocks. Still, each block will be paid for in advance of any cutting !!!!
17. I will forward both signed copies to you for your signatures. You should immediately deposit the enclosed payment. You then send one signed contract to me and I will return it to the mill for their files. (If this seems like a lot of extra mailing, it is important that I maintain control and keep copies of all correspondence in my files.)
18. The mill must provide me with certificates of insurance for their crews (minimum 2,000,000 liability and worker's compensation).
19. The buyer has to give me at least two days' advance notice of starting logging operations. I meet them to lay out skid trails and go over the sale area. Once they begin, I meet the cutter and skidder and tell them exactly what I expect and what I won't tolerate. Everyone knows up front what to expect, and I hold them to the contracts verbatim.
20. During operations, I periodically inspect the job to insure contract compliance. I vary the times I come in so they can't predict my inspections.
21. Once they have completed operations, I make sure they level trails and log decks, build waterbars, and hay and seed where necessary.
22. When all parties are satisfied, I release the buyer from any further responsibilities.