1.  Why Do You Need A Consulting Forester?

A consulting forester is your personal representative who is working to help solve your forestry-related problems. If you answer “yes” to any of the following questions, then you want to consider employing a consulting forester:

Do you have timber you want to sell and want to get the best possible price while still protecting your property?

Do you need someone who is on your side to help you manage a timber sale?

Do you need help in contacting reputable potential timber buyers and in drawing up and monitoring a timber sale contract so that your interests and property are adequately protected?

Do you need to know how much timber you have and its value, either for a timber sale, for buying or selling land, or for tax purposes?

Has someone stolen timber from your property? Did you know you may be able to receive triple damages if the people who illegally removed your trees didn’t give you prior notification of their intention to harvest trees next to your boundary?

Will you be involved in any type of legal proceedings regarding forestland?

Do you need professional forest planning assistance?

These are some of the most common reasons a landowner wishes to employ a consulting forester.  A consulting forester is able to advise and assist you with any problem connected with timber or the management of your woodland.

2.  What Kind Of Forestry Services Does A Consulting Forester Provide?

Timber Sales – 
A consulting forester knows timber and stays current on timber markets. He knows who buys what kinds of products in your area and knows what kind of job they do. He can get you the best price for your timber and make sure that your woods, your land, and your interests are protected. Included in this may be:

Timber Marking – 
By selectively marking your timber for you, a consultant helps you sell only those trees which are mature or need to be harvested at this time. This will leave your better, young trees to grow for the future. By you preselecting the trees to be removed and not leaving the choice to a timber buyer, you will be able to help preserve the beauty of your woods to enjoy in future generations.

Timber Cruising – 
If timber marking is not needed or wanted, the consultant can cruise your timber to tell you exactly how much volume and the grade of what you have to sell.

Appraisals –
The consultant can tell you what your timber should be worth and then help you get the most for it when you sell it.

Sale Representation – 
The consultant can represent you in the actual timber sale, from beginning to end, including:

Drawing up a timber sale contract to meet your specific situation
Advertising the timber
Contacting the appropriate buyers
Showing the timber to buyers
Opening bids
Awarding the timber sale contract.

The consultant can also make logging inspections to see that the contract is being followed and that your woods and property are being protected.

  1. Forest Management Planning – A consultant can meet with you and help you plan the future of your forestland.  A properly managed forest not only provides timber benefits, but also natural beauty, wildlife, recreation and high quality water.  After determining your personal goals and objectives, the consultant can walk over your property with you and help you prepare a professional plan to help meet your woodland goals for the future.
  2. Trespass Investigations- Did you know that under a recent Kentucky law (KRS 364-130), if someone crosses your property line and cuts timber on your property without your permission that you are entitled to receive triple damages in court?  This law applies if the logger or adjacent landowner did not notify you in advance of their intention to harvest.  A consultant can estimate the volume and value of any timber illegally cut or removed from your property and then help you recover damages.
  3. Expert Witness Testimony – In cases of timber trespass, theft, or other legal issues related to forestland, a consultant can provide expert witness testimony in court on your behalf.
  4. Other Services – Consultants may also provide other services such as vendor services for tree planting, site preparation, or timber stand improvement. Consultants may also provide or assist in environmental impact studies, ecological assessments and a great variety of other things which may in some way be related to forestland.


3.  What Does a Consulting Forester Cost?

Consultant-handled timber sales and related work are usually done for a percentage of the sale price of the timber. Because of the consultant’s knowledge and experience in timber and his knowledge of the local buyers and markets, the consultant will nearly always make a landowner more than the cost of his fee as compared to a landowner handling a sale on his or her own.

And not only does the consultant get the landowner more money, the consultant’s knowledge of logging practices, contracts, and sale procedures will assure the landowners interests are protected with professional care. When a forest is mistreated or cut improperly, it may take a generation or more to recover.

In all fee arrangements, the services of an KACF Consulting Forester offer clear advantages of economy without conflict of interest.

Consultant fees for activities other than timber sales depend on the type of job, travel distance and the amount of time required.

4.  A KACF Consulting Forester Serves You Best…

… in professional ability, technical training, broad experience, honesty, integrity, and in their desire to serve no one’s interest but those of their client. KACF Consulting Foresters are fully qualified to serve the needs and requirements both individuals and businesses.

5.  What Are My Other Alternatives?

The State Division of Forestry employs professional foresters who provide forestry services to landowners. State foresters are limited by state policies as to the amount and kinds of services they can offer.

State foresters are not allowed to become directly involved in private timber sales. They are also prohibited from giving private landowners a monetary appraisal of timber. State foresters are not allowed to make trespass investigations or damage appraisals.  A consulting forester should be contacted in cases of legal disputes. 

Some private forest products companies or sawmills also employ professional foresters who may provide forest management services to private landowners. These foresters are restricted by company policies and their primary obligation is to their employer. 

A consulting forester is not bound by any public or private policies. He is an independent professional and is able to provide whatever forestry services you may need when you need them.