Protect Land

CREATE YOUR LEGACY

How can I help?

Can I help Mud Creek Conservancy protect land?


Yes! You can help Mud Creek Conservancy permanently protect land through monetary donation, conservation easement donation or outright land donation. Monetary donations are a great way for anyone to support Mud Creek Conservancy and the permanent protection of land. If you live or own land in the Mud Creek Watershed in Hamilton, Marion or Madison Counties, Mud Creek Conservancy can also work with you to protect your land for generations to come. The Mud Creek Conservancy accepts both conservation easements as well as outright donations of land. Click on any of the conservation options above to learn more about how you can get involved and always feel free to contact us with any questions or to move forward with a land protection option.





Conservation Easements

What is a conservation easement?


If you want to retain ownership of your land, but arrange for its permanent protection now, you can do so by donating a conservation easement to the Mud Creek Conservancy. A conservation easement is a voluntary conservation option. It sets up a legal agreement between a landowner and Mud Creek Conservancy, that ensures the land will always be protected. Mud Creek Conservancy currenlty maintains 35 acres of donated conservation easements in the Mud Creek Valley in Indianapolis.




Do you still own the land?


Yes! The land remains the private property of the landowner, who gets to decide what kinds of activities will be allowed or disallowed on the property based on the mutually agreed upon restrictions detailed in the easement.




Does a conservation easement really help protect my land?


Yes! While you already love your property and have been protecting it to this day for the benefit of your family, community and the wildlife that depend on it, ensuring it is protected forever can be much more difficult.

A conservation easement allows you to work with MCC to ensure the habitat and wildlife you love are protected now and into the future. The agreed upon easement restrictions remain enforceable, even if you sell, donate, or will your property. This allows you the peace of mind of knowing that your land will be forever protected from development pressure or poor decision making, while leaving a lasting legacy for future generations.




Do I have to include my entire property?


No! As the landowner, you will be directly involved in designing the conservation easement to meet your needs while also protecting the conservation value of the areas you decide to protect. If you have future plans for your land such as a home expansion, or other development activities then consider placing an easement on ground that would not be impacted by those plans.

Ideally, a conservation easement would protect larger tracts of woodlands, wetlands, or riparian areas that have a high risk for potential development and habitat destruction, however areas that have lower potential for development such as slopes, ravines and areas prone to flooding are also excellent places to consider including in your conservation easement. While placing your entire property in an easement may lessen the need for additional property surveys or appraisals and reduce any associated time and costs, it is not required.




Can a conservation easement be financially beneficial?


Yes! Whether you place all or only a portion of your property into a conservation easement, you may expect to benefit in a number of ways. Donated easements can qualify as tax-deductible charitable donations, significantly lowering your state and federal income tax. A conservation easement with development restrictions typically lowers the market value of that parcel and that means lower annual property taxes for the landowner. Any heirs to your property can also benefit from significantly reduced estate taxes when your property is passed on to the next generation.




I'm interested in pursuing a conservation easement. What now?


If you find yourself interested in pursuing a conservation easement donation with Mud Creek Conservancy, please contact us.





Land Donations

Can I donate my land to Mud Creek Conservancy?


Yes! You may wish to donate your land to Mud Creek Conservancy outright. When title to your land is transferred to us, we become responsible for its permanent protection. You can do this during your lifetime or arrange to have it done upon your passing. If done during your lifetime, you and your estate may qualify for significant tax deductions. If done upon your passing (through your will), a reduced but still significant estate tax deduction may accrue to your estate.




If I donate my land, can I continue living in my home?


Yes! You may choose to transfer your property to us now, while continuing to live on it for the rest of your life. This is typically referred to as a "life estate donation". You donate your land and your home to us now, and continue living in your home exactly as you presently do for the rest of your life. Upon your passing, ownership would be trasnferred to MCC to ensure permanent protection of the property you love.




Can a land donation have financial benefits?


Yes! Donating your land not only ensures it will be protected forever, it also can provide present and future financial benefits. If you donate your land to the Mud Creek Conservancy, you may qualify for a significant income tax deduction, avoid capital gains taxes, and, in many cases, achieve significant estate tax savings.





Monetary Donations

How will a monetary donation help protect land?


Mud Creek Conservancy (MCC) is run entirely by volunteers and donors with a shared interest in preserving and conserving the unique and important habitat in the Mud Creek Valley. All financial donations go directly towards furthering MCC's ability to conserve and protect land. Funds are utilized for land purchases, conservation easement stewardship and monitoring, legal defense funds, land trust certification fees, as well as minimal conservancy operating costs. While all of these different funding needs allow MCC to protect land, just leave a note in the donation form or contact us if you would like your donation to go towards a specific aquisition or use. We appreciate you providing financial assistance to this very important cause.




Would my monetary donation be tax deductible?


Yes! Mud Creek Conservancy has 501(c) 3 status and your donations are eligible for tax deductions. ​ We are grateful for your contributions.




I'm interested in making a monetary donation. What now?


Thank you for considering a donation to Mud Creek Conservancy and allowing us to continue protecting critical habitat. You can donate online through secure a secure PayPal donation. Checks should be made payable to Mud Creek Conservancy and mailed to 7399 N. Shadeland Ave # 200, Indianapolis, IN 46250. For major donations, contact us if you would like to arrange an alternative donation method. We would be happy to hear from you and assist you with your donation.





If you are passionate about the natural area in the Mud Creek Valley, you can take steps now to protect land for future generations.

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