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Access to Land: The Leasing Option (Legal Aspects of Leasing Land for Beginners)

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Jesse J. Richardson, Jr., Associate Professor, Urban Affairs and Planning, Virginia Tech

Rented farmland is essential to virtually every full-time farming operation and many part-time Virginia farmers. Leasing farmland is particularly important for new and beginning farmers. According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, over 15,000 farms in Virginia lease a total of nearly 3,000,000 acres of farmland in the state.  This webinar will cover the basic legal issues involved in farm leasing.  These and other questions will be covered:  Why should you have a written lease? What issues should the lease consider? What does all the legal jargon really mean? What happens if the lease expires and I still have crops to harvest? 


leasing-powerpoint.pdf PDF of Access to Land: The Leasing Option Presentation Slides

The Virginia Beginning Farmer & Rancher Coalition is a state-wide and coalition-based Extension program, housed in Virginia Tech’s Department of Agricultural, Leadership, and Community Education. Funding was sponsored by the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP) of the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Award #2020-49400-32326. For more information about the program, contact Katie Trozzo, Program Coordinator, at or 540-231-4582. For other questions, contact Kim Niewolny, Program Director, at

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