Wind Energy Development Considerations For Landowners

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AUTHOR: MICHAEL HAMBLIN, BROKER | LICENSED IN WA

WINDS OF CHANGE

As wind turbines begin to line the horizon among America’s heartland, many rural landowners are being approached with an opportunity to lease their land for wind energy development. Anyone that has an operational wind farm on their property knows the income can mean stability and passive income for decades. However, some landowners have experienced the opposite, leaving them without turbines on a 50-year lease or a wind project riddled with problems. Building a team of professionals to navigate the nuances of renewable energy development and choosing the right developer to work with can be the difference between a problem project and passive income for generations to come.

It is crucial to understand the differences between leasing directly to a developer of wind energy and leasing to a wind lease wholesaler. A developer is invested in seeing a project become operational, whereas a wind lease wholesaler is gaining control of the land to later assign that lease to a developer for a profit. However, wind lease wholesalers distinct from land brokers, who can specialize in wind, solar, and battery storage leases. Seeking representation from a competent land brokerage that is experienced in negotiating with renewable energy developers can save time, money, and energy. Building a team consisting of a land broker specializing in renewables and an attorney experienced in wind leases, estate planning, and tax law can make a substantial difference.

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