Question: I know this sounds like a ridiculous question, but I have an opportunity to secure a deer hunting lease from a landowner who has openly admitted to me that he intends to sell his property, but he is just not sure when this might happen. The landowner that is looking to lease his land has given me his word that I “won’t loose my money” should he sell. However, I have had no prior dealings with the man to make a sound judgement call on the strength of his word.
As I understand it, any new buyer would have no obligation to honor a hunting lease, and I cannot see him making it a requirement of the buyer. Any deer hunters ever been down this road before? No money has exchanged hands at this point, and I just want another opinion before I even think about moving further. It could be a good opportunity, but I don’t want to lose a bunch of money on a would-be deer lease. What would you do?
Answer: First, it’s difficult to trust anyone in the world we live in. With all the bad things we’ve all heard about in the past, it’s made us more than a bit skeptical. However, you also don’t want to give up a year of deer hunting if you don’t have to, particulary if you think the place provides good deer habitat. Let’s face it, deer leases are not as easy to find as they once were. However, keep in mind that if you did in fact lease this property you are talking about, you would likely only be hunting there one year.
Most property sold today is purchased by people with recreation in mind, which means there is a 99% chance that they will give you the boot and turn to hunting the land themselves. First, ask yourself if the whole deal is worth the risk right now, and then decide if you are willing to get set up for a single year of hunting and then move again when deer season is over?
If you really want the lease: The guy leasing the land wants you to trust him, so tell him to trust you. Let him know you want the lease, but will not pay until deer season gets closer. This will not allow you as much time to set up your gear, but it will keep you from investing a bunch of your hard-earned bucks into something that may not yield any whitetail bucks. Besides, the money he makes of the lease will mean less to him and more to you, especially if he sells.