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Would this be a fair offer?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by DianeB, Aug 7, 2012.

  1. DianeB

    DianeB Feeling the Heat

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    We own an 8 acre wood lot off of a discontinued town road. After many years, the road is in real bad shape but with the right kind of truck you can still get out back there - probably a mile of rough road. For the past couple of years, my husband has stopped cutting down trees himself and we actually buy seasoned wood. He stopped because of buddy of his that worked with him moved out of the area and my husband had a scare where tree hit him and did not want to be in the woods alone any longer. Thought occured that we could find someonw willing to work for their own wood to heat their home. Would it be a fair offer to say they could cut and take their own 4 cords in exchange for cutting and delivering us 4 cords? We could cut to length in our yard and split. My husband thought we might have to give 2 and take 1 in order to have anyone interested. What say you guys - what would be a fair offer? At $200 a cord, we would be giving away $800, but that person would also be working for it by felling trees and delivering to us.

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  2. jwoair23

    jwoair23 Burning Hunk

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    I think this one could be argued either way to be honest. But my gut feeling is that you won't find very many takers on a 1 to 1 deal. I am a 100% scrounger, and I know personally I wouldn't take that offer. I would be cutting 8 cords of wood to get 4, that is a whole lot of work. I wouldn't look at it like you are giving away $800, you would only be giving away $800 if you cut it and split it yourself. Its only worth $$$ once the work is done. A 2 for 1 deal is more likely to get a taker, but I still feel you might have trouble finding someone unless they are really hard up for wood.

    Like I said, others my have a different view, but those are my thoughts for what they are worth. The sweeter the deal you make it, the more likely you'll get a taker. Besides my esteemed peers on this forum, out in the "real world", I have found a lot of firewood scroungers to not be willing to do a lot of work to get the wood. A lot of them just want it laying there cut so they can come pick it up.
    amateur cutter and ScotO like this.
  3. rdust

    rdust Minister of Fire

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    Cutting on shares I'd be surprised to see someone go 50/50 with you. BUT you're not looking for them to cut to length and split so you may have a shot. Of course not many wood burns would be equipped to haul log length logs out of your woods. For me to be tempted to cut on shares with someone I didn't know a 70/30 split "might" get me there. A lot of work, equipment and time go into processing firewood. The easier the wood is to access the more likely I would be to go after it.

    If you have some mature trees maybe you could sell some of the timber making some money and just process the tops for firewood.
  4. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Would be a fair trade IMO. Having the right equipment to do it might be the tough part.
    Delivered log length is usually about 1/2 the price of wood delivered in splits & it's your wood.

    Couple other option: (1) may be to repair the road a bit & hire someone to fell 4 or 5 cords worth of trees. You could tie ribbons to the trees you want dropped. Then go have some fun cutting the down stuff. (2) hire someone to cut & haul your trees & deliver to you. Get 20 cord delivered & be good to go for a few years & have lots of dry wood in 2 years or so .
    Then you still get the fun & exercise of processing your firewood.

    Felling is part of the fun for several of us :)

    This year there's allot of free wood out there, with all the storms & blow downs. Might be more difficult to work a trade this year.
    But run a CL ad & see if anyone is interested.
  5. Realstone

    Realstone Lord of Fire

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    I would cut, split & stack one for you, one for me, especially if you let me season it on your wood lot for later p/u. If you were close by, I'd call you for sure.
  6. Realstone

    Realstone Lord of Fire

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    I'm actually going to do this for an older couple in our church. I need space and enjoy the work, they need wood.
    amateur cutter and DianeB like this.
  7. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Most common when renting land is 1/3-2/3. That can be used as a rule of thumb for many things. However, for wood cutting, more common is 25% for you and 75% for them.

    Then comes the most difficult part. That is, people like to cut for them first and then you. Problem is, you get trash wood and they get good wood and many times they simply forget to come back to cut for you. And how would you police it?

    If you can police it, then I'd suggest they get 1 load and then the next load goes to you. Then they cut the other 2 loads. I'd do this for each and every cord of wood.
    ScotO and Realstone like this.
  8. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    I think Dennis is pretty close with his 25%/75%. You might just put the word out however you like and mention that you are interested in working out a deal and then figuring out in a bargaining session what they'll do.

    You might find a go-getter who's gonna come in with three buddies and smack 8 cords out in a weekend with his super awesome tools and you trust him more than the next guy, even though he's only gonna give you 1.5 cords.

    Can't put an amount on trust and expertise, so if you know your splits are gonna be nice sized and right length, then you might be willing to work with the guy.

    If some guy shows up in a rusty omni with a fiskars splitter and a poulan 12 electric chainsaw, then I wouldn't trust that you're gonna get much in terms of your share because he'll be working all year just to get his own share and in his mind, his comes first.

    I dunno, just trying to put more typing on the internets.
    Thistle, smokinj, ScotO and 1 other person like this.
  9. bioman

    bioman Burning Hunk

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    Might be some liability issues if somebody gets hurt !
  10. fox9988

    fox9988 Minister of Fire

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    You or a friend could go out with your husband while he fells a few cords worth of trees, it shouldn't take long. Then he could process later.
    Joful likes this.
  11. DianeB

    DianeB Feeling the Heat

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    All great suggestions. Thanks guys, you all gave me something to think about when it comes to this wood share thing.
  12. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Probably easier to get a local guy to give you a "chop and drop" price per tree to just lay them on the ground for you. Then your husband can buck and haul at his leisure. Three years ago I had three big ones I needed down soon. In the woods with nothing they could hit and hurt. Never paid anybody before to drop trees or cut wood but a guy was taking some down for a neighbor and I gave him fifty apiece to lay them on the ground because I was having a health problem that wouldn't allow me to get out of the way fast enough if something went wrong. If you do that make sure it is understood that they don't get paid till the tree is on the ground. I ended up having to finish one that he hung up and was scared to finish. :mad:

    There is a liability issue but I have a one mil liability rider on my homeowner's insurance. Most policies are standard at three hundred thousand.

    In the woods a cell phone is your friend.
    Thistle and ScotO like this.
  13. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    If your husband has the ability to haul wood maybe you can find someone to accompany him into the woods, they cut together and split the wood. Maybe the deal can be that the other guy cuts the wood and loads your husband's truck, with some help from your husband. That way the work load is greatly reduced for the other guy and your husband is there to see that he gets a fair share and your property isn't trashed. If your husband is there then a 50/50 split is a fair deal.
  14. Fire Breathing Dragon

    Fire Breathing Dragon Member

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    Funny you should ask about this. Growing up about 30 years ago I would help my dad and uncles cut and split wood on private property (I was a very young lad then) and we fell the trees, cut, and split a load of wood for the owner for every load we took off the property. We did this for several years and fed at least 3 wood stoves at about 4-5 cords each. That was back in the day before us scroungers have become spoiled with the free wood available BUT... You can place an ad for someone to cut and split for you what they take out and see if you have any takers, from there if you get no reply after a while you can move the scale to favor the other people? Good luck!
  15. MI wood guy

    MI wood guy New Member

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    I do this with a guy that owns property behind my house.I can haul a rick in my truck.I give him 1 rick delivered for every 2 rick I take.I don't split his just drop it off in the round...
  16. Jack Straw

    Jack Straw Minister of Fire

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    I cut off of my sister's land and it was a 50/50 split. I did think I was getting the short end the stick (pun intended), but it was my sister and she's great. I think, as said above, paying someone would be the best idea. You would have control of which trees that are to be cut and there would be much less chance of problems occuring.
  17. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Not sure what the confusion is here, as it seems the OP did indicate they'd be giving 2 out of every 3 cords (66%/33%), not 1/2 as other seem to have read.

    Me? I'd be looking for some young guy in need of free wood, and offer to split everything down the middle with him, if he came out and worked with me (not for me). Basically, you keep what you cut, I keep what I cut, but we haul it all out together. Who can turn down all the free wood they can cut?
  18. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    The biggest issue is liability. No matter what the individual signs or says, he or his next of kin can sue you if he gets hurt. In NH, if there is no "consideration" between the parties than they cant sue, but once you make a deal to get a split of the cut, all bets are off.

    Also note that Mass is passing more laws everday to restrict cuttign of trees on private land.
  19. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    I have the same type of deal worked out with my neighbor...for every 4 loads that come out of the woods, he's going to get 1. I would personally never do it on a 50/50 split.

    Now, if the landowner was helping me...and was a hard worker and pulled their weight...I'd do a 50/50 deal or maybe 60/40...because I'm only doing half the work.
    DianeB likes this.
  20. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    Joful, SHE want to split it 50/50 her hubby said he thinks it will take 2 for 1 to get someone out there which is the senario you said. But she wants to try the 50/50 thing first.

    Here is the other thing you need to think about. you have 8 acres. I dont know anything about your species or age composition on your site. But, unless its large softwoods (think really tall 100+feet) or huge oaks aproaching the same height with good diameters as well as density of spacing, you will be out of wood pretty fast. Thats 8 cords a year if you even find a taker at 50/50. I know around here the average woodlot would not run more than 20 cords of HW total. Maybe a good site may run 30 cords but that would be pretty jamb up hardwood and that would bee all species including poplar and sweetgum. My point is if you find someone and cut say 10 cords a year i think you can look to be out of wood in 15 years? Maybe your older and dont think it will matter by then but i honestly think the most sustainable thing would be to hire a small tree company to cut and then put them in your yard to process them.
  21. DianeB

    DianeB Feeling the Heat

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    It is a very ancient wood lot with enormous trees. We have not cut for many years and only cut total for 10 years. Lots of hard wood (ash/oak )- some pine. My husband would never cut pine or hemlock even though plentiful - seems in our area this is not cut because of creosote, but with the newer stoves is this really a worry??
  22. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I am with Dennis here as well. Should be easy enough to take 12 cords out of there every year. Probally want to wood burner though then they only have to produce 2 cords per guy. Just a thought.
  23. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    again im not familiar with her lot but if the trees are "old, ancient mature" trees the site is not growing 12 cords a year? If i had to guess as a forester, sight unseen there may be 2 loads to the acre of merchantable wood, now there is firewood in the tops, but i have no idea on how to estimate that standing. Once on the ground i can tell pretty good looking at what we have but standing, they dont make volume tables to account for that as its variable. Anyway 2 load to the acre is 20 cordsx 8 acres =160 cords. so 160 cords divided by 12 cords a year. gives you 13 years on a rotation of 12 cords a year. BUT your not going to have much of an oak tree in 13 years grow back, so this puts you in overcut situation. BUT again this leaves out the tops which we all know contain good wood and is volume. So figuring you have 1/3 the volume in tops of standing wood i would give her 50 cords in tops out there which really doesnt streach that rotation age out to much farther, but maybe enough for them to get by.

    Remember she said there is pine as well, not much top in a pine.

    Sorry im reading way to much into it, but this is my gig as a forester. All these are assumptions but the volumes are pretty good to go by. She could have a stacked riverbottom type stand with 120ft tall oaks i dont know?
    Joful likes this.
  24. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Yea your reading way to much. For one you cant judge a book without a cover. Two pretty hard to get some one to halfs on wood they could otherwise get a 100 percent. They also know and can buy wood.
  25. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    yea thats what i was trying to say in a bunch of words. If you go the 1/1 or 2/1 deal your gonna run out of wood IMO. That is a point where they must realize they will ahve to buy wood.
    smokinj likes this.

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