AgEBB-MU CAFNR Extension

Green Horizons

Volume 21, Number 2
Spring 2017

Forestry Industry

The Bid Box

By Hank Stelzer | MU Extension - School of Natural Resources

The installment of The Bid Box serves as an excellent example why you need a professional forester when it comes to selling your trees, especially if those trees are walnuts!

Randolph County, Missouri

  • 194 marked trees
  • Estimated volume: 41,700 bd. ft. (Doyle Scale)
  • Very good quality; some veneer and three sides clear. Forester estimated the value of one tree to be in the $6-7,000 range.
  • Forester valued the sale at anywhere from $60,000 to $80,000 market value, depending on the prices he put in for different products. He advised landowners to not be surprised if we got a wide range in bids, and some much higher than his estimated range.
  • Seven bids received
    • $151,000.00
    • $104,500.00
    • $95,000.00
    • $80,000.00
    • Two in the $60,000.00 - $65,000.00 range
    • $59,500.00

The forester knew the high-bidder, but had never worked with him before. The buyer was not from the area. The forester contacted foresters in other states who had worked with the buyer. Satisfied with their responses, he set up a meeting between the seller and buyer to sign contracts and take care of payment.

Two days before the meeting, buyer emailed the forester informing him that he looked at the trees for himself (the buyer had sent someone else in the company to inspect them the first time). The buyer wanted to "exchange" 37 of the marked trees for 22 "buyer's choice" trees, and keep the money the same.

The forester said no, and the contract was going to be for the marked trees. If he wanted to buy 22 more trees, the forester would be happy to walk the woods, look at them, and advise the landowners if they should be sold or left to grow for the next cut. The buyer withdrew his bid. The forester removed the buyer from his list and notified other foresters. That buyer will find some difficulty buying forester-assisted sales in Missouri again.

The second high bidder was local, someone whom the forester had worked with before and does fantastic work in the woods. He was still interested and a contract was signed for his $104,000 bid.

If you are thinking about selling your timber, contact your professional forester now! Not only will they help you get the highest price for the trees in your woodlots that need to be harvested, but they can help ensure future harvests are profitable, too! To help you become familiar with some of the aspects of selling timber, check out the following MU Guides:


G5051 - Selling Timber: What the Landowner Needs to Know

G5057 - Basic Elements of a Timber Sale Contract

G5056 - Managing Your Timber Sale Tax

G5055 - Determining Timber Cost Basis

These guides will help you better understand the ins and outs of marketing your timber and help you help your professional forester!

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