The decision to sell a farm in Alberta is one that most families don’t take lightly, and it’s not a choice that we advise them rushing into, either. In fact, in our initial consultations with new clients, our goal is always to give them a range of choices and our best advice. No matter what we do, though, we know it won’t be easy.
After all, selling the family farm isn’t just a financial or investment decision… it’s one that is made with the memory of previous generations in mind, and the thought of what children, grandchildren, and their heirs will do in the future. For many, the farm is a part of the family’s soul. Even though selling might be the practical choice, that doesn’t make it an easy thing to let go of.
But, there are times when it makes too much sense. Perhaps the farm isn’t earning what it should be financially, or there aren’t any more members of the family willing to take up farming as a profession. In those cases, we normally advise people to think through three important questions:
1. Are we really ready to let go emotionally? Often, the financial side of things is easy, but the emotional side isn’t. Take a long look at your situation, and your family’s, and decide whether or not it’s the right time to move on.
2. Under what conditions would we sell the farm? If you think you might be ready to sell your farm, then take the next step and think about what conditions would have to be met. What sort of lifestyle do you want to have afterward, and what kind of after-tax profits will you need to move on financially?
3. What steps should we take in the planning process? Selling an agricultural property isn’t a quick and easy proposition. There are a number of marketing considerations, tax implications, and other details to look after. That’s where we typically step in and make the process easier for the families we work with.
At the Mertz Team, we pride ourselves in assisting families before, during, and after agricultural real estate transactions. If you want our best advice for your situation, call us to set up a time to talk.
By Fred Mertz Join me on Google+