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SG-W:/ Preserving Land

Hi all,
I have a friend with a good bit of property outside Ann Arbor that is
currently farmland. They are looking to preserve it as open space and are
thinking about putting it in a land trust or selling the development
rights to the State of Michigan. The property is larger than the minimum
40 acres the State requires and is good quality farmland. I have heard of
land trusts and development rights as ideas batted around a lot but have
only a vague idea on how they work, so there are a whole slew of

Has anyone on this list sold their development rights to the state? How
does that work? Do you retain ownership of the land? Is an easement
created that makes it unbuildable, or is there some sort of wording in
the deed? Can that deed wording go away after a certain number of owners?
Can the state develop the land, then? What about a land trust? How does
that work, with ownership, development, etc?

Any guidance, references, or sources you have would be much appreciated.



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