Want your Property to be a Legacy? Plan ahead.

Every week, our PotlatchDeltic Preferred Brokers talk to people who want to buy a recreational property that will one day be passed down to their family.

So where do you start? First, “begin with the end in mind,” as motivational guru Steven Covey says.

Rod Osterloh of Close-Converse, a PotlatchDeltic Preferred Broker in Brainerd, Minnesota, has worked to sell legacy properties for decades.

“Know your vision of what the property is going to be after you buy it, and what it will look like when you’re not around anymore,” Rod says. “Will you want the land to be for private benefit, for public benefit, or both?”

Some property owners want their property to stay in the family forever. Others will want to eventually donate the property for conservation. And sometimes, an owner wants to do both – passing along one part of the property to family while donating the rest of it.

As you think about your long-term goals, Rod says, build a team of advisors, with an experienced real estate professional working with such experts as a lawyer, tax expert and wealth manager, depending on the situation.

No matter what path you want to take with your legacy property, Rod offers these four things to think about:

  1. Know how you’re going to use the property before you buy, because this will drive much of your decision-making.

Are you planning to use the property for hunting? Will you be planting timber? Will it have a home or cabin? This information is important to tell your team of advisors, because it could impact everything from potential timber cash flows to how you’ll want the property to be managed.

If you buy the property as a group, it’s important that everyone in the group share a similar vision for the property, reducing the possibility of disagreements in the future.

  1. If you plan to leave the property to your family, think about the type of ownership structure you want.

Often, families form a trust or partnership, and there are pluses and minuses with this approach. With this approach, all members of the partnership get a voice in decisions, but there can be unintended consequences when family members develop different ideas about whether they want to keep the land long-term.

As a hypothetical example, let’s say six siblings inherit a property. But after owning the property for several years, they are disagreeing about the future. Two want to keep the property long-term, two want to sell, and two aren’t sure what to do. What happens then?

Hopefully, the siblings’ parents would have set up buy-sell agreements, giving the siblings the opportunity to buy out each other’s interests. With such agreements in place, the property could stay in the family without creating conflict.

Your team of advisors should be able to think about potential downsides to any possible ownership structure, and can help you put structures in place to prevent issues in the future.

  1. If you decide you want to donate the property, do your homework.

If your property is next to a wildlife management area, you may have the opportunity to donate the property someday. So how do you know if that’s possible?

First, work with your real estate professional to talk to the proper government entity about the possibilities. As an example, in Minnesota you’d start with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Then, as you work with your team, think about implications like how such a donation could impact your taxes.

  1. There also may be the possibility of making a donation while keeping a family retreat.

PotlatchDeltic recently did such a hybrid deal with a 988-acre property in the Brainerd Lakes area of Minnesota. The company first placed a conservation easement on the property while retaining four building sites spread around the property. Then, another owner bought the property, subject to keeping the building sites with their own private easements.

With this approach, the land can never be developed beyond the homesites. Hundreds of acres are preserved for wildlife production. And each building site owner will have the right to use the property and to build a cabin.

No matter which approach you take in planning your legacy property, it’s critical to work with a recreational real estate professional that has experience in working with such properties.

The pros in the PotlatchDeltic Preferred Broker network have this experience, having sold properties that have subsequently stayed in families for years. Call one of our Preferred Brokers today to start planning your own legacy!

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Happy New Year

From all of us at PotlatchDeltic…





If you cannot reach us, it’s because we’re celebrating the holiday with family and friends. Please visit with us online or try us again on Wednesday, January 2nd. Thank you!



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Season’s Greetings from all of us at PotlatchDeltic!

May peace, happiness and prosperity be yours during
this Holiday Season and throughout the New Year!

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Cool properties to heat up your search for your dream property!

Tis’ the season!  A time to be with family and friends and enjoy the holidays.  And the new year is the perfect time – whether you’ve been naughty or nice – to get that property you’ve been dreaming about! With hunting, recreational, timberland and rural land listings from 20 to over 200 acres and prices to fit any budget, your search starts here!


Ely, MN
15 acres | $45,000
To see full listing, click on image.

All Minnesota Listings


Clearwater County, ID
8 acres | $73,250

To see full listing, click on image.

All Idaho Listings



Nevada County, AR
42 acres | $122,292
To see full listing, click on image.

All Arkansas Listings


Attala County, MS
80 acres | $198,750
To see full listing, click on image.

All Mississippi Listings


Chilton County, AL
232 acres | $470,250
To see full listing, click on image.

All Alabama Listings

So, whether you’re a first-time buyer just getting started or you’d like to expand your property holdings, we welcome you to PotlatchDeltic – the only name you need to know when it comes to buying recreational property.


Click here to tell us a little more and we’d be happy to introduce you to a member of our team – each an expert in their neck of the woods and the perfect partner in your search for your dream property.

Have questions or not sure how to get started?  Send us an email.

Happy hunting!

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Meet our Minnesota Broker: Bear Island Land Co, Inc.

After years of working as a land surveyor for the U.S. Forest Service, Charlie Chernak knew what he wanted to do: start a real estate company.

Charlie Chernak

He already dabbled in real estate, so why not focus on selling property to other Minnesota folks who share his passion for hunting, fishing and the outdoors?

Now, more than 20 years later, Chernak’s company, Bear Island Land Co., is a thriving real estate operation in Ely, Minnesota. Bear Island’s eight real estate professionals sell many types of property, with a special focus on meeting the needs of the recreational buyer.

Bear Island’s recreational buyers tend to be Minnesotans who have a tie to the area. Many are folks who grew up locally and then left, but now want to reconnect by purchasing a recreational property for their families. And many area deer hunters want to own the property where they have their deer camp.

Ely is a 4-1⁄2-hour drive from Minneapolis and a 2-hour drive from Duluth, making it convenient for outdoor enthusiasts who want to come up for a few days and enjoy their properties. Deer hunting is a big draw, followed by grouse hunting, and the area also offers a variety of other recreational activities.

Bear Island is the largest real estate company in the Ely area, with approximately 300 listings, and takes pride in how it combines a personal touch with skill in technology. In addition to running a top-notch website, the company connects with buyers through such social media channels as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and is now using a drone to get quality property photos from the air.

But no technology replaces the need for a personal relationship with a buyer – one that is centered on trust. “It is up to us to understand everything involved in how someone wants to use a property, and then be ready to help,” Charlie says. “They may want to know who to talk to about financing or to understand a municipality’s rules. If we don’t know the answer, we get the buyer quickly to someone who does.”

Bear Island has enjoyed a longtime, successful relationship with PotlatchDeltic and is currently showing  approximately 100 PotlatchDeltic listings.

“We can always tell a buyer with confidence that PotlatchDeltic property has been cared for, and that there won’t be any surprises,” Charlie says. “The quality of the experience is shown by how many PotlatchDeltic buyers later buy adjoining properties.”

Chernak and his staff never stop learning, always thinking about ways they can help buyers. “While I loved doing surveying work, real estate has proven to be even more rewarding.” Charlie says. “There is nothing better than helping people buy PotlatchDeltic property that will become a legacy for their family.”

For more information about Bear Island Land, Co. or its PotlatchDeltic land listings:
943 East Sheridan Street | Ely, MN 55731
Phone: 218-235-6239 Website: www.mnlands.com
Email: : charlie@bearislandland.com

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Sportsman’s Estates – NEW RELEASE

Recreational & Homesite Lots
From 7-25+ Acres | Starting at $61,790

Sportsman’s Estates, located less than 10 miles southeast of St. Maries, ID, is a newly created rural residential property, consisting of eight available parcels ranging in size from 7.4 acres to 25.9 acres. These conveniently located parcels, directly off Highway 3, offer the opportunity for excellent buildings sites, sweeping views and ample acreage to expand and play. With access to thousands of acres of timberland right out your back door, yet the proximity to town, these are the quintessential Idaho lifestyle properties.

All parcels have power and phone to the property already and have been surveyed. Access is provided from a private road and, with no CCR’s or HOA, the options are limitless.  Available parcels are mostly level with slight topographical features that create privacy amongst within the community and offer some nice views of Lindstrom Peak and the surrounding hills. 

Future owners of these parcels can take advantage of the Idaho Timber Tax Exemption by retaining a minimum of 5 acres of land designated to production of timber, thus significantly reducing property taxes. All available parcels currently meet the requirements for this tax savings.

The opportunities for lifestyle activities from these parcels are virtually endless, including hunting, horseback riding, ATVing and fishing the local lakes and rivers – just name a few.  It is very rare to find properties that provide all these features together with the convenience of being within 10 miles of the urban amenities. Don’t miss your chance to secure one of these excellent Idaho lifestyle properties!

Exclusively listed with one of our
Idaho Preferred Brokers.
For more information:

Tom Moore, United Country – Northwest Land & Lifestyle Properties
208-772-3000 |

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Happy Thanksgiving from PotlatchDeltic!

May the good things of life be yours in abundance,
at Thanksgiving and throughout the coming year.

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You’ll ‘fall’ for our latest Newsletter!

Fall seems to have flown by as quickly as the beautiful fall colors came and went.  Now, we head into the the holidays and winter weather, which has already started in many parts of the country!  There’s plenty of time left in 2018 to start that land search you’ve been considering. So, whether you’re looking for information about the recreational and hunting lifestyle or want to see what properties we currently have listed, now’s the perfect time to have a look.

In this issue…

  • So you want your property to be a legacy? Look at these 4 important things to think about…
  • See which of our brokers was named Land Realtor of the Year…
  • Find out about communities that are perfect for building that new home or getaway you’ve been thinking about…
  • Meet one of our brokers – Charlie Chernak of Bear Island Land Co. in Minnesota…
  • And, don’t miss the Property Showcase to see some of our best land-buying opportunities. Click here >> Image result for video icon

You’ll find all these great articles and more in this issue of The Property Perspective ONLINE or PDF (to read, just click on your preferred viewing format).

So, whether you’re a first-time buyer just getting started or you’d like to expand your property holdings, we’re glad you’re here. Before you go, we invite you to:

  • Click here to tell us a little more and we’d be happy to introduce you to a member of our team – each an expert in their neck of the woods and the perfect partner in your search for your dream property.

Have questions or not sure how to get started?  Send us an email.

Happy hunting!

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This Winter Leave the Stand and “Still Hunt”

As fall turns to winter, it gets more and more difficult for deer hunters to find bucks. So why would it make sense to sit in a deer stand all day, hoping the deer come to you?

Instead, it’s often a good idea to “still hunt” – slowly and quietly walking the woods to find spots where the deer are, whether they are feeding early in the day or bedding down later on.

This approach requires patience and skill. A blog on the Bone Collector website gives some good tips for hunters who want to “still hunt” this winter. Here are some of them:

  • Move into the wind. Even if you stay in the shadows and are extremely quiet, deer could still get your scent if you aren’t careful.
  • Bad weather, such as rain or snow, can actually be a positive, making it tougher for wildlife to spot you.
  • Set your GPS to flag your vehicle’s location, then don’t worry about where your hunt takes you, knowing you’ll be able to find your way back.
  • Make every movement slowly, whether it’s pulling up your binoculars or getting out some equipment you need.
  • Travel light to allow maximum movement, knowing you’ll be keeping warm by being on the move.
  • Stay alert at all times. When you are walking deep in the woods, you may turn a corner at any time and be in a high-target spot.

PotlatchDeltic sells quality hunting properties in Minnesota, Idaho, Arkansas, Mississippi and Alabama – properties you can use as a great home base for your hunting trips. Call or email one of the experts in our PotlatchDeltic Preferred Broker Network today to see what’s available.



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Get to know our Mississippi Brokers: Tom Smith Land and Homes

Tom Smith

BROKER SPOTLIGHT: Tom Smith Land and Homes

Tom Smith, of Tom Smith Land and Homes, is known as “The Land Man” for a good reason – he has the largest land brokerage in Mississippi.

Tom’s company has grown from 22 to more than 50 professionals in recent years, and has offices around the state in Ridgeland, Starkville, Oxford, Hattiesburg, Brookhaven, and New Albany.

The reasons for Tom Smith Land and Homes’ success are simple, Tom says. “People want you to do what you say you’re going to do. We do that. And we deliver results, thanks to a close-knit team that has each other’s backs, like a family.”

This approach is nicely summarized in the company’s motto: “Expect more, get more.”

Before becoming one of the Southeast’s top land sales experts, Tom spent a number of years climbing the corporate ladder, including 15 years with Wal-Mart, where he rose to the rank of Vice President of Operations. He lived in 11 different states and traveled the world, but after 27 years in corporate America what he wanted most was to come home.

Home for him is Mississippi. “I was born and raised in Meridian,” he says. “As a kid, I hunted and fished; I was always outside.”

Still an avid outdoorsman, Tom wanted to live and work in a place that would offer him plenty of opportunities to pursue his hobbies. For him, Mississippi has it all. “We have amazing deer and duck hunting as well as terrific bass fishing,” he says. “Best of all, nothing freezes here, so I can fish year-round.”

Mississippi is a great place to raise a family, and Tom, his wife Ellen, and their two daughters, Kathleen and Samantha, spend many happy hours boating on Lake Caroline.

In 2002, he launched Tom Smith Land and Homes and quickly found his niche. “No one was really focusing on land,” he says.

The company has grown exponentially in recent years, and Tom is delighted to be a PotlatchDeltic Preferred Broker. “Buyers like the certainty of knowing the property they’re buying has been taken care of,” he says. “Whether they’re looking for great recreational opportunities, potential investment opportunities or a well-managed forest with quality wildlife, they know a PotlatchDeltic property is quality real estate.”

As an Accredited Land Consultant, Tom provides specialized knowledge to his clients. “I don’t just sell you land,” he says. “I can offer advice on how to design, develop and maintain it.”

And he ensures that the other land specialists on his team have that knowledge. His team includes several other ALCs, and a number of his team members are working on the hard-to-get ALC designation, which requires specialized education and a proven track record in selling land.

The team’s specialized knowledge and excellent personal service combine for a winning formula. “Two factors drive our company’s business,” Tom says, “the loyalty the public has in our brand, and the work we do to get the word out about our company around the state.”

As he cruises properties and talks to buyers, Tom doesn’t miss his days in corporate America a bit. “I have a passion for what I do,” he says. “I don’t have to go to work – I get to go to work!”


For more information about Tom Smith Land and Homes
or its PotlatchDeltic land listings
601 Crescent Blvd, Suite 103 | Ridgeland, MS 39157 | Phone: 601-898-2772
Website: www.got-landcom | Email: tom@tomsmithland.com

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