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Frequently asked questions

Find out the answers to the questions you are interested in.
What factors influence forest prices?

Forest prices are influenced by multiple factors and can vary depending on a number of important circumstances. Some of the principal factors that can influence the price of a forest are indicated below:

  • Wood types and quality thereof:

The species of trees that grow in a forest and the range of materials that can be extracted from them have a direct impact on the price of a forest. Higher quality and more sought-after types of wood generally translate into higher prices.

  • Area and location of the forest:

Larger forest areas, drier growth types and a more convenient location all contribute to a higher price, as these factors reduce the costs and time of felling.

  • Forest condition and quality:

If the trees have reached the specified felling age or diameter, their quality will be higher than that of overgrown trees.

  • Market conditions:

Timber market conditions and demand for a particular product also affect forest prices – if there is a global shortage of a particular product, the price of the timber that it is sourced from will rise.

  • Legislation and regulation:

Legislation and forestry regulation can affect the price of forests, especially if specific rules or restrictions have to be respected.

  • Environmental and sustainability factors:

Increased attention to environmental sustainability can lead to higher forest prices, as the demand for sustainably managed forests is on the rise today.

Each of these factors can work in tandem with the others, and the overall price of a forest is determined in a comprehensive way, taking many different circumstances into account. It is therefore important to consult forest experts in order to get more precise information about the situation.

What documents are required to enable the seller to sell their felling site or forest land?

To sell forest land or a felling site, you must have your ownership rights corroborated in the Land Register. In the event of the sale of a felling site, all owners must give their consent to the transaction.

What is the payment procedure like? Is payment made all at once or in instalments?

Payment shall be made in full to the bank account of the seller before logging starts, and, in the event of land sales – before the ownership right is corroborated in the Land Register. Stiga RM makes the payment in full within 1 (one) business day of signing the contract; this applies to purchases of felling sites, as well as forest land.

What is the volume that is required to agree on cooperation?

Each case is assessed individually, taking into account a number of factors, such as the distance to the nearest felling site or property, the management of which is scheduled in the nearest future, the types of growing conditions in the forest and the range of timber to be harvested. However, in the event of a felling site, the most common amount is 200 cubic metres and in the event of a land purchase – 2 hectares.

What should be stipulated in a felling or land purchase contract?

Some of the most important sections of the contract are the contact details of the seller and buyer, the cadastral number and cadastral designation(s), the specific plots, areas and harvesting types, the full purchase amount, the bank account number of the seller, the obligations, rights and responsibilities of the buyer and seller, as well the payment and harvesting period.

What factors should be considered to make an informed choice before selling a felling site or land?

It is important to compare offers from several potential buyers in order to make an informed choice regarding the future partner in the area of forest management. Both the quality of harvesting, post-harvest clean-up, and the potential for reforestation need to be assessed. Performing the research of the trends in timber prices in recent years is also worthwhile to determine which wood is more valuable and, consequently, marketable. Planning the use of the money you receive from the sale of your land or timber wisely is no less important.

Is it compulsory to take an inventory of your forest? Who does it and how long is it valid for?

Forest owners are obliged to renew their forest inventory or perform forest cruising at least once every 20 years; this document is a mandatory requirement and has a validity period of 20 years. This means that in 2024, the performance of forest inventory will be compulsory for forest owners, who carried it out for the first time in 2004 or earlier. Forest inventories may be carried out by officially certified forest cruisers. The forest inventory shall be accepted by the Forest Department, which checks the conformity of inventory data with the situation on the ground within 30 days of the submission thereof and either accepts, in which case, the inventory becomes valid, or asks to enter corrections in the inventory and resubmit it.

How often can trees be felled and at what age?

The forest with homogeneous growth conditions, tree species composition and age is divided into plots. A forest plot may be clear-felled, if the dominant tree species has reached felling age. For pine this age is 101 years, for spruce – 81, for birch – 71, for aspen – 41, while grey alder can be felled at any age. Pine, spruce and birch plots may be felled before the age of felling, if the average stem diameter of the dominant species at the height of 1.3 m above the root collar has reached 30 cm for pine, 26 cm for spruce and 25 cm for birch. There are several types of felling, for instance clear felling, selective felling and maintenance felling. The maximum permissible clear-felling area is five hectares in dry forest types and two hectares in other forest types. The minimum age that a regenerating stand adjacent to a clear-felled stand must reach before clear-felling is allowed is three years. The rules on felling trees are established by the Law on Forests and Regulation of the Cabinet of Ministers No. 935.

What taxes must be paid, when selling a felling site and/or land? Who pays them – the buyer or the seller?
  • In the event of the sale of a felling site, the owner, a natural person, must pay income tax of 7.5%.
  • In the event of the sale of land, in accordance with the Personal Income Tax Law, the income from the sale of real estate is subject to personal income tax as income from capital gains. The tax rate is 20% of the difference between the sale proceeds less the cost of the purchase of the property and the value of investments in the property.

No tax is payable if:

  • The real estate has been owned by the person (from the date, when the real estate was registered in the Land Register) for more than 60 months and has been the declared place of residence of the respective person for at least 12 consecutive months (within the aforementioned period of 60 months) until the date of conclusion of the alienation contract;
  • The real estate has been owned by the person (from the date, when the real estate was registered in the Land Register) for more than 60 months and has been the sole real estate of the respective natural person for the last 60 months until the date of the alienation of the real estate;
  • The real estate is registered in the Land Register as the sole real estate of the natural person and the income from the respective real estate is reinvested in a functionally similar real estate within 12 months of the alienation of the real estate or before the alienation of the real estate.
    • Thus, if it is not the sole real estate, there could be an exemption in the first case, provided that the person has been declared a resident there for 12 consecutive months in the last five years before the property was sold. These can be any 12 consecutive months during the 60 month (or five year) period.
Who pays for the services of a notary?

In the event of cooperation with Stiga RM, the services of a notary are fully paid by Stiga RM.

Do I have to do my own paperwork with the State Forest Service, if I want to sell a felling site?

The documents can be handled by the forest owner or their authorised person. In the event of cooperation with Stiga RM, the documentation shall be handled and the respective costs shall be covered by Stiga RM.

When should reforestation be carried out and how?
  • Before planting, it is advisable to prepare the soil by milling. Although soil preparation is an additional cost, it is recommended even if the area of reforestation is small. The objective of milling is to reduce the competition between planted trees and understorey plants, facilitate planting, reduce the need for agrotechnical maintenance of plantations or, at least, make it significantly easier to carry out.
  • A forest that has been felled more frequently is reforested with the dominant tree species from the previous turnover cycle. If the forest is very wet, it can be reforested by creating 20 cm high mounds. For instance, fertile soils with high content of clay are not suitable for pine. It should also not be planted in clearings that are being rapidly overgrown. This conifer prefers sandy, poor soils that tend to dry out and have a high soil pH. We recommend consulting a reforestation specialist before planting.
  • Wetlands, swamp forests with reed, and swamps are usually reforested naturally, while drier forest vegetation types can be artificially reforested.
  • The most suitable tree species for Cladinoso – callunosa forests, Vacciniosa forests, and Myrtillosa forests is pine. Meanwhile spruce, alder and birch are best planted in a Oxalidosa forest, Hylocomiosa forest or Aegopodiosa forest.
  • Planting is best done in spring, provided that the soil has been prepared before the winter season.
  • We recommend carrying out the first maintenance in the year of reforestation if the undergrowth is starting to threaten the growth of planted or naturally established saplings. Maintenance should be carried out for several more years, by performing maintenance one or more times per year, depending on the intensity of the overgrowth. The frequency of maintenance is influenced by tree species, soil fertility and weather conditions.

Any questions or uncertainties?

Feel free to contact our forest property procurement specialists!

Jānis Ozols

Forest property procurement specialist

Reinis Patmalnieks

Forest property procurement specialist

Rolands Lipskijs

Forest property procurement specialist

Kalvis Liepa

Forest property procurement specialist