Land Legacy Planning

For families with special places.


Within the next 15 years, 371 million acres, or 40 percent of America’s agricultural land is expected to change hands as families age out of farming and demographics and interests change. Often those left holding property rights are siblings and next of kin with differing perspectives and goals, perhaps living far apart from one another and away from the land. They may not have a common understanding of the property extent or value. Typically a realtor or trust officer is enlisted to help families transition their land ownership. Yet despite working on behalf of families and landowners, these agents typically have corporate agendas. Even conservation organizations helping families with land protection options are driven by their own missions. 

Meanwhile, demand for rural properties across the country has spiked since 2020 as the pandemic pushed city residents to relocate to the quieter, more spacious countryside. No doubt that those with land potential feel the pressure to make decisions quickly to protect or sell. 

What I Do

Silvernail Studio provides objective decision support for families with land in transition. Special memories and experiences were formed by those who lived on and cared for these lands, and recognizing those attachments to place ought to be part of the transition process. We begin with that conversation.

Then I head to the field and conduct a thorough site analysis, considering relevant environmental and municipal data to identify key values and constraints of the land. I produce maps of the property within its surrounding context so that all players are on the same page. I propose options for protecting, selling, splitting, repurposing, or gifting the land given its features and limitations. If requested, I can identify suitable sites within the property for future building or other development.

How can I help you navigate options for capturing the legacy of your landscape?


Several family trusts and private landowners.

Tools Used

ArcGIS Pro, NRCS web soil survey, local parcel data and ordinances, vellum paper, colored pencils, markers.

Helping families transition special places with objective decision support.

Sample site analysis