Conservation Agreements

How PLC Protects Land

The most common tool PLC uses to protect land is the conservation easement. These voluntary legal agreements help landowners permanently protect their land from future development. 

However, PLC protects land using a variety of flexible tools, depending on landowner interests and the conservation values of the land. We always work with willing landowners, using conservation easements as well as land donations, and purchases. We also work with state and local partners to make a larger impact through joint conservation efforts.

What is a Conservation Easement?

Conservation easements are the most common tool PLC uses to protect the land. They are voluntary legal agreements that help landowners permanently protect their family lands from future intensive development and subdivision. Conservation easements preserve private ownership and also preserve the natural characteristics of family land. They also offer potential estate and income tax benefits. Conservation easements are negotiable documents that match owners’ property-use needs with long term benefits to their community.

Conservation Easements are:


Conservation easements are completely voluntary and appropriate for landowners who wish to permanently protect and preserve the land they love.


Conservation easements do not require access to your land by the public- you retain control of who visits your land.​


Conservation easements with PLC permanently protect land. To qualify for tax benefits, a conservation easement must be made in perpetuity. Although future owners must abide by the easement terms, the land can be bought, sold and inherited the same as all other lands. A competent title search will disclose the easement to future owners.


Conservation easements are as unique as the land they protect. The easement can be crafted to meet the specific needs of the owner.

A conservation easement creates a permanent legacy. It is a wonderful way to honor the memory of a family member who instilled a love and respect for land in subsequent generations. Such a decision should not be made in haste. Our staff will meet with landowners and their families to discuss all aspects of a conservation easement.

How You Can Protect Your Land

Many people desire to protect forever treasured family lands, as a legacy, so future generations can continue to enjoy and appreciate these special places. PLC can help landowners achieve these goals, through a number of different options. Each protection project is unique, depending on the personal vision of landowners and the nature of the resources to be protected.

PLC only works with interested landowners and helps landowners through the process of land protection, including consideration of protection options and potential benefits. In many cases, state and federal tax incentives make land protection financially possible for landowners. PLC uses the following tools to meet the special needs of landowners seeking to conserve their lands:

  • Conservation Easements
  • Donation of Land
  • Bargain Sales
  • Remainder Interest Trust for reserved life estate
  • Bequest
  • Living trust
  • Charitable trust
  • Installment gifts
  • Sales of land

If you would like to discuss your land protection options, please call the PLC office at  (336) 691-0088 and ask to speak with a Land Protection Specialist.

Our Mission

PLC protects our region’s natural lands, farms, and waters for present and future generations. PLC connects people with nature.