Why a Professional Forester?
Professional foresters are licensed by the State of Maine and New Hampshire to ensure high standards in the industry. These professionals must meet strict educational, experience and continuing training standards to maintain their licenses. These standards help ensure you as clients, are dealing with reputable professionals that operate under a code of ethics, governed by the States. IFM foresters are professional licensed in Maine and New Hampshire and also hold the Society of American Foresters (SAF’s) Certified Forester accreditation. Professional foresters have also received advanced training in silviculture, soil science, ecology, wildlife and hydrology, to name a few. This training and education ensures you are working with someone who understands forests and ecosystems and can give you the best possible plan to meet your goals
What is a Management Plan?
A Management Plan is a detailed document that takes into consideration all the pertinent details of a forest ownership, as well as landowner goals and objectives and spells out a plan on how those objectives are to be best met. Considerations include forest stand types, soil type, slope, topography, brooks, ponds, wetlands and other water ways, wildlife habitat, forest structure and health, recreational opportunities and property descriptions to name a few. These plans are created by resource professionals with a combination of field and office work and spell out ways to meet landowner objectives over a specific period of time; usually 5 to 20 years. These documents can be updated as conditions change and help to crystallize the objectives of landowners as well as help communicate goals and ideas to other professionals.
Do I need a management plan to harvest timber on my property?
No. Management plans are recommended for those individuals or groups that want or need a long range plan developed that takes current conditions, in consideration with goals and objectives, and charts a course for how to meet those goals. Some individuals prefer to manage in a more “on-demand” style, contacting us when they feel some activity should take place. These can be one-time entries that capture value, while setting stands up to grow for long periods of time, or clients that wish to have more control over what work is done and when. We recommend a management plan to almost all clients with 10 acres or more.
What is a Harvest Plan?
A Harvest Plan is different then a Management Plan in that a Harvest Plan spells out specific guidelines for a particular harvest of forest products. It does not contain the amount of detail found in a Management Plan, but effectively communicates to the landowner and the harvesting contractor what trees are to be harvested and how. It also considers skid-trail layout, landing and road location and post harvest clean-up. A Harvest Plan is generally a written document and appended to the contract.
What measure do you take to protect the Landowner?
IFM uses two sets of contracts to ensure landowner goals are met and all parties are protected from damages. A Timber Sale Agreement (TSA) is drafted to serve the relationship between IFM and the Landowner. This document spells out how timber is to be harvested, what the landowner will be paid for each species and unit and what the responsibilities are for the Landowner and for IFM. This TSA legally protects both the landowner, IFM and any contractors used from damages that could occur during a harvesting operation. Damages could include fire, theft or personal injury to name a few.
How do you choose a Harvesting Contractor?
IFM works with a broad range of professional contractors to harvest your woodlands. These contractors vary in size, equipment mix and capability and IFM ensures you get the right contractor, with the right equipment for your job. Whether it is a traditional hand-crew with a cable skidder, to fully mechanized operations with chipping capacity, or high-tech in woods processing equipment we will make sure to get the people and the machinery that fits your job.
Are your contractors insured?
Yes. IFM contracts with proven professionals that are fully insured and trained by the Certified Logging Professionals’ (CLP) program. Additionally, IFM uses a legal agreement with each contractor to ensure they are up-to-date with their training and insurances and offers further legal protections for landowners, contractors and IFM.
What if I need road or landing construction?
As a firm that offers the full package of harvesting and management services we can also contract with construction companies to accomplish any road or infrastructure projects that may be necessary to managing timber. We work with several construction companies and hold them to the same high standard we hold our harvesting contractors to. We ensure that they have the tools to do your job right, on time and within budget. We also use construction firms that are fully insured and reputable in the marketplace.
Who pays for construction work?
Construction work necessary to access timber for our clients, on their own land, is usually an expense to the landowner. In many cases IFM can carry these costs for the landowner until cash is generated from the timber harvest, with no out-of-pocket costs to the landowner.
How do I get paid for harvested timber?
IFM uses detailed contracts with timber harvesters and with landowner clients. These contracts between the landowner and IFM spell out all of the payment rates, separated by product, and also layout some other fundamentals of the legal relationship. IFM pays its landowner clients weekly for timber harvested and can pay by check or direct deposit.
Do you offer flexible payment and billing plans?
Yes. IFM is able to offer flexible plans that distribute cash from harvesting operations to you as you need it. If you need certain payments spread out over a period of time for tax, legal or other reasons, we can work with you to develop a plan that fits your needs.
Can you help me deal with tax issues?
Yes. IFM can offer basic tax advice when dealing with your payments for harvested timber. Should your needs be beyond our level of expertise we can recommend a more suited professional.
Who takes care of permits I may need?
Should you need permits to actively harvest timber on your land, IFM will ensure those permits are properly filed for. Whether it is the standard Forest Operations Notification, or DEP/LURC, or municipal planning board permits, we will go the extra step to help you actively manage your timberland.
Are you recommended by the Maine Forest Service?
The Maine Forest Service does not recommend specific consulting foresters. However, Mark Rabon and Jeremy Stultz are on the Maine Forest Service’s list of approved Stewardship Foresters. This means that they are licensed foresters that have met the requirements set forth by the Maine Forest Service so as to be eligible to participate in the Maine Forest Service Cost Share Program.
Can you provide references?
Yes. If references help make you more comfortable working with IFM please ask. We would be happy to provide a list of contacts for you to get in touch with.
What other services do you offer that may help me?
IFM has a wide range of knowledge and expertise in the natural resource and technology fields. If you have a project that deals with land, soil, water or wildlife we asl you to give us a call. If we can help, we would be happy to add you to our growing list of satisfied clients. If your project is outside of our realm of expertise, we may be able to point you in the right direction using our extensive list of contacts in related fields.
What are you company's core values?
At IFM we believe that landowners can be good stewards of the environment by managing land for a multitude of benefits for the short and long term, without sacrificing the qualities we have come to love and expect from our woodlands. Stewardship to us means an ever-present understanding of our resources and a devotion to education, both for us as professionals, and to our clients. We hope to pass our knowledge onto our clients so they may be better advocates for their own goals, the resource at large and society as a whole.
At IFM we believe that our forests, and the products that come from them, will continue to be an intricate part of our social fabric and our economy. From that point of view, we strive to manage with a conservative approach that will ensure a dependable source of products and services to the local and global market. We also wish to help provide for a healthy and functioning ecosystem as well as clean air and water. As a final understanding of sustainability, we also advocate for a healthy forest products industry that will continue to recognize the value of forest stewardship.
At IFM we serve a large and diverse clientele and treat them all with the same respect and attention to detail they deserve. Whether you own 5 acres, or 50,000 acres you can rest assured that our expert team will work diligently to understand your needs and goals and carry out our mission with integrity. By acting with integrity we mean to treat our clients, our employees and our contractors fairly and honestly.