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How to Lease Hunting Property

08 Oct 2021
by Jackson Pollock

How to Lease Hunting Property

Sporting Rights Leasing is a lucrative business. A hunting rights lease helps farmers earn consistent income while ethically controlling deer numbers on their properties. Many hunters near you may be searching for "hunting land for lease near me" as you read this very post. So, why not offer a hunting rights lease directly to them? But you may be asking, "how do hunting leases work"?

It is essential that the rights of all parties involved be protected and that their respective responsibilities be clearly defined. Hence, the hunting lease document. Should it ever be read aloud in court, there should be no room for misinterpretation. When considering how to lease hunting property, a sound hunting lease is of primary importance. So, how do hunting leases work?

The Land dot Lease system has taken most of this into account through the design of our marketplace ensuring a smooth and seamless experience from start to finish.

Follow our 10 point checklist to ensure a sound hunting lease.

1. Names of the Parties

The lease should include the name of the lessee / hunter; THE BUYER who purchases the permission to hunt. So too should it include the mane of the lessor / landowner; THE VENDOR who sells the lease. If the landowner is representing a company then the lease should include the name of the company too. Addresses and contact details should ideally be supplied.

This is included, as standard, on all Land.Lease hunting leases.

With each Vendor account requires the name of the Vendor Company  i.e. 'Wilks Ranch" as well as the Name of the Vendor representing the Company. The BUYER's name is required when opening a customer account on the platform. These details, along with any contact details supplied will be printed on the customised lease upon purchase.

The lease, a private document, is then emailed to both parties.

2. Specified Quarry

The hunting lease should specify precisely what may be hunted.

This is where the lessor specifies exactly what species and sub-species that the hunter is permitted to harvest. For example, whitetail deer is a sub-species of Deer. If the lease specifies whitetail deer only then that is all the hunter can take. Should there be more that one species of deer available then the lessor is better off specifying the primary category of Deer, of which whitetail deer is automatically included.

The same applies to hogs, game birds or waterfowl; or any sub-species listed. This is incorporated into the design of Land dot Lease. Whatever Quarry is advertised is included on the hunting leases.

If there is a sub-species that we have omitted in our check-box category list do not hesitate to contact us and we will include it.

3. Duration

The duration of any lease is a strict defining aspect of the product. Any good lease should include this. This is included, as standard, on all Land.Lease hunting leases.

All Land.Lease leases require that the exact dates of the lease be defined. You will not find any leases on our site where the duration is not already specified.

Leases can be "by-the-day" which is booked like any other online experience such as a hotel room.

Most leases will be sold by the season or by the year. These can be offered by Auction of at a fixed price. The duration of any lease will be evident on the listing.

4. Description of the Land

The land needs to be described so the lessee knows exactly where he has permission to hunt. The more comprehensive the description of the land the less room there is for misinterpretation and the clearer the terms of the lease will be should it ever be disputed in court.

The more time taken by the landowner to describe the land the better. There are any number of ways to describe land, its boundaries and its exact location. Some of the ways available on Land.Lease are listed below. All of the below location descriptions appear on our leases.

  • Address AND Full description of Exact location : 
    • Here the landowner can provide an exact description of the location and address or both. This information is printed on the lease (Private Information - not published on the internet)
  • Exact location
    • The exact location of the lease is specified by the Vendor. This is done by placing a pin on Google maps. The pins default location is the nearest town and the Vendor moves it to the exact location of the land. This appears on the listing so prospective hunters can survey the ground. The GPS co-ordinates of this pin represents the exact location of the site. The GPS co-ordinates are printed on the lease.

  • Land Registry / GIS numbers (optional)
    • The lessee has the option of including the GIS numbers of the land on offer. While this is not obligatory, this adds another layer of specification for the Vendor should he wish to avail of it. This represents Private Information which is not published on the internet.
  • Photos / Maps
    • In addition to the above, the Vendor may elect to include customised maps and red-line diagrams of the site.

Given that this is a location based service we believe that this offers a compressive suite of tools to describe the location of the land on offer.

This is included, as standard, on all Land.Lease hunting leases.

5. Access Points and ATV use

Having multiple access points can be important, particularly to deer hunters. Hunters may wish to access the property from different ends depending on the wind. Specific access points should be specified. On Land.Lease we have the Access Points section.

Here, the lessor specifies access point via google maps and provides directions on how to access the land from there. These access points are considered Private Information and are not published on the internet. These Access Points are not printed on the lease but rather emailed to the buyer after he purchases the lease.

The Vendor should specify if ATV's are allowed or exactly what kind of transportation is permitted on site. On Land.Lease, this is achieved using the Features section. Here the Landowner can specify ATV use, camping options even if there is a butchery service available.

If there are features unique to your site that we have omitted, please contact us and we will update our list of site features.

6. Limitations

The lessor can stipulate as many limitations on the lease as is reasonable.

Each Vendor / landowner answers these question for each site and lease:

1. Do you have any stipulations, restrictions or criteria for access?

2. Do you have any stipulations regarding cull limits, bag limits, numbers to be taken, or reporting thereof?

Such stipulations may include but are not limited to:

  • Maximum hunting party: If the lessor specifies that no more than 5 hunters my participate on the lease that that is the maximum number. No guests can be permitted in excess of this number.
  • Cull limits: This may limit one whitetail buck per hunter or 2 trophy bucks.
  • Required cull numbers: This may require each hunter takes a minimum of three feral hogs.
  • Reporting: The lessor may stipulate each animal shot of fish caught be reported. This may include photographs or measurements.
  • Keep Gates Shut: This may be of particular importance on a working farm where loose livestock have the potential to pose a threat to public safety.

The Land.Lease template offers landowners several opportunities to specify any such limitations, and all limitations specified appear on the listing.

Do you have any stipulations regarding cull limits, bag limits, numbers to be taken, or reporting thereof?

7. Insurance

A common stipulation made by Landowners is that the hunters purchase insurance prior to hunting on the property. The insurance purchased should be appropriate to the pursuit and be maintained for the duration of the lease. The lease holder and any associated hunters (BUYERS ASSOCIATES) need to hold similar suitable insurance. Simply put, no uninsured hunter should step foot on the property.

This stipulation is found on all Land.Lease hunting leases. The Terms stipulate that if a lease holder (BUYER) fails to purchase insurance then the Vendor has is afforded the right to cancel the lease without compensation. Without insurance, the lease holder does not have permission to hunt on the property.

Insurance is a pre-requisite to entry of any site and this is stipulated on every lease as standard.

Responsibility to acquire insurance rests with the lease holder (BUYER). Responsibility for confirming the acquisition of said insurance rests with the landowner (VENDOR). Whoever buys lease is responsible for purchasing their own insurance and the lease seller is responsible for confirming this.

With Land.Lease, no lease is valid without proper insurance. For further details, please review The Terms section 8.4.1.

8. Release of Liability and Indemnification

For a lease to be truly sound, the Lessor (Vendor) should insist that the lessee (Buyer) waive any and all liability. The waiver of liability should be as comprehensive as possible and should apply to all associates of the lessee (Buyers Associates). It is advisable that any such Release of Liability and Indemnification of Landowner be conspicuously written and contain specific language.

In addition to the liability release, the lease should provide that the lessee will indemnify and hold the landowner harmless from any claim, demand, loss, damage, attorney fees, and cost resulting from any such claim. All Land.Lease hunting leases are subject to The Terms which should apply to most situations.

However, as the legal requirements for a valid waiver of liability and the scope of such wavier may vary by state we understand that any Vendor our our site may wish to consult their own attorney and stipulate their own Terms & Conditions for access. We appreciate that the language required in different states and countries.

To this end, we have included a facility where by each Landowner (Vendor) may stipulate their own Terms and Conditions. We have a place in the software where these Vendor T&C's can be pasted. When a hunter purchases one of your leases they are required to accept the Vendor T&C's at checkout before the sale can be completed. A copy of the Vendor T&C's are emailed to the purchaser along with a copy of the lease.

We appreciate that Vendors may wish to stipulate their own legally binding conditions for access, and that required specific language may vary from state to state. We contend that the facility for each Vendor to stipulate their own T&C's is the optimum solution for the imposition of Release of Liability and Indemnification.

The option to specify Vendor T&C's is a standard feature on all Land.Lease Vendor accounts. If specified, these Vendor T&C's then apply to all hunting leases sold by that Landowner.

9. Sporting Equipment Allowed

Depending on your state or nation, time of year or quarry concerned hunters may be prohibited from using certain equipment. For example, in the UK bow hunting is against the law, while in some American states rifles are forbidden save for particular times of year. While it is ultimately the hunters responsibility to obey the laws of their state it may be advisable to state these restrictions in your lease.

If you have your own preference for what equipment you allow this too should be stated in no uncertain terms.

10. Landowner hunting and exclusivity

As standard, on all Land.Lease hunting leases exclusivity is guaranteed. That means that only the BUYER and his associates can hunt on that land. Should you wish to retain hunting right for you and your family this should be stated in the Vendors Terms & Conditions section. This way there can be no confusion regarding shared access.

This blog is not intended as a substitute for legal advice

Sample lease document is available upon request.


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