Protecting Your Property with a Conservation Restriction

Date of Publication: 01/01/2017

Author: Multiple

Learn about Conservation Restrictions, a method of protecting your land while maintaining ownership.

Conservation Restriction

The ownership of your land carries with it different rights, including the right to build, subdivide, farm, hunt, cut trees, and the like. A conservation restriction (CR) (called a conservation easement in states other than Massachusetts) is a voluntary legal agreement that extinguishes some or all of the development rights in your land forever, but retains other rights of your choosing, such as farming, forestry and recreation while you maintain ownership of your land.

CRs are flexible tools that can be placed on all or only designated parts of your land, allowing you to reserve house lots to provide future financial value or housing options for your family.

A conservation restriction:

  • Is tailored to your unique circumstances and to your individual property.
  • Allows you and future landowners to continue using your land for activities such as farming, building farm structures, wood-cutting, gardening, walking, boating, etc.
  • Runs with the land - forever.

Conveying a CR to a conservation organization can help you:

  • Reduce property & estate tax burdens.
  • Qualify for a federal income tax deduction & up to a $75,000 state tax credit.

View one land conservation organization's information on Conservation Restrictions here: