Land grants are awarded by the government or public to an individual or public organizations/institutions to serve a public purpose. It is often given as a reward to retired military personnel in return for their service. Universities, public-funded colleges are the main recipients of the land grants. Railways, roads, bridges are also the outcomes of land grants.
In the US, 1862 act, as per the homestead act, both US citizens as well the citizens intended were invited for the land grants. They were asked to do some sort of agricultural activities & convert the area into a dwelling place for 5 years. This was done to increase the population in the area. And after 5 years, if the invitees adhere by the rules they are entitled to permanently own the property.
Now, in recent years, the land grants are awarded in different names.
Different states have provisions for the state agricultural grants. The government publishes the grant availabilities in their concerned websites, grants.com. They specify the requirements needed to apply. Also, the application criteria with documentation are mentioned.
Individuals who are looking for land grants can freely register with them & get the necessary information. It has application deadlines & subject to change. So it is mandatory to update daily.
Countries that offered land grants- a historical review
Rome- During the ancient period, the Roman soldiers were rewarded with land grants for their service. Sometimes they were paid cash
Australia- In older times, males were granted lands if they have a family. Also, the officers of the marine service were awarded land grants
Canada- for the railways, pacific railway grants were given.
Ireland- lands were given for the agricultural as well as plantation purposes
Newzealand- railways were developed as a result of the land given in the form of grants
United States- during the 19the century, government-provided land grants to promote mobilization, construction of canals, rails, bridges, roads, universities, etc.
Do land grants exist?
Coming to the point of discussion, federal land grants are distributed effectively from ancient times itself. It is well utilized for homesteaders, rails, roads, etc. through the local as well as the state governments.
There are numerous publications & advertisements regarding the land grants awarded by the government. All these are facts, but you should have a credible plan to present before the government offices. Usually, the land grants are distributed to the nonprofit institutions or other organizations by the state & government agencies. The recipients use the land grants for the welfare of the community & the public.
There are also individual-based or personalized loan programs with low-interest rates.
Land grants are also distributed among farmers, victims of serious natural calamities, special needs grants for the disabled community, etc.
The process of awarding a land grant
The federal government provides extensive information on different land grants in their catalog. So anyone can visit their website to get more insights on the eligibility a well as subsequent proceedings thereafter.
Most importantly, the application process for land grants has to be handled with great care. Any omission or wrong information may lead to denial of grants. This is indeed a great loss, as the land will remain forfeit. This is the commonest problems being faced in America. Most of the lands are not occupied either because of a lack of awareness of grants or due to error in the application process.
There are local counselors to help tackle the situation. But, a very low population make use of this service. If it is consulted with a local counselor, you can get various options based on your current situation. Also, you get an idea on the documentation part including the identity documents, work documents, etc.
The application proposal has to be very transparent with proper justification & reasoning. In this way, one can make a successful grant application for getting free land.
Land entry, petition, warrant, patent? – stages of the application to own the land
Land entry is the term used to award land grants to individuals by the government.
Receiving the land grant is the final step in the process. Initially, there are a lot of stages to get approved that includes a genuine proposal with the necessary attachments. All the steps are not the same, there are differences based on the region as well as the local laws. During the application, the person has to state the land size in acres & also the changes he would make in the property.
In the beginning, the individual has to make an application stating the way he wishes to acquire the land. It may be as a reward for his service in military or allied services which is the free land grant. In other cases, an individual also can purchase land from the government.
In either case, individuals are required to submit their citizenship documents, military documents, identity proof, etc. If anyone has a previous claim on the land, that documents are also attached during this stage.
The application is normally termed as a petition & is submitted before the concerned government office or the governor.
The application is thoroughly scrutinized by the officials. And if the application is approved, the warrant is produced & notified to the individual. The warrant is a document that authorizes the person to receive the land.
The warrant also provides the surveyor the right to collect the land details including the measurements. It is then sent to the concerned land offices for the detailed survey. This contains the legal data regarding the location of the land.
Some lands are already surveyed, in such cases, the person or the applicant can choose to place a bid in a government auction. Sometimes, lotteries are available for bids. It mainly depends on the state you belong to.
The land offices collect all the legal information of the land location & records in tract books.
The individual has to full fill other requirements depending upon the status of his application. If the person is purchasing the land, the payment details have to be furnished. And if the person is entitled to free land grants, he has to complete the required residency period in the land. With all these documents, the person will be titled as the owner of the land.
All these documents are in file with the government office. If there are no other issues, a final certificate will be presented to the individual, it is referred to as patent. The patent is a valuable document that shows the ownership of the land by the individual. The patent is also brought before the court office.
The individual has complete ownership of the land. He can sell or give the land to anyone after this process. The government retains all the land information in the case file for future records.
Other types of land grants
In addition to the above-said grants, there are other categories to learn. The colonial grants, state grants, lottery land grants prevailing in Georgia & also the veterans are awarded military land grants.
What happened in Molise, Italy?- Grants for everyone
Recently the Italian government invited applications from all over the world to the Molise region of Italy for settlement. They provided a grant of Euro27000 to successful applicants. This was given to start a business & settle in the area for at least 5 years. The proposal for the grant has to elaborate on the business plan, budgeting, etc for 5 years. This was the active residency scheme. It is open in the coming years also.
Land grants in Australia
In Australia, crown land grants are available to community groups. It is open to northern territory/nonprofit groups.
Initially, an application with an elaborate proposal has to be made. It should include the intention of the proposal, any constructions, financing, etc. After attaching all necessary supporting evidence, an application fee has to be paid.
After receiving the application in the file, the authorities investigate all the scope regarding the project. Also, the environmental implication of the project is prioritized. The impact of the project on the surrounding regions are also analyzed.
The financial plan is then addressed. The expert involvement in the project is also considered. Last but not least, the time scale is also taken into consideration. Delayed projects or time-consuming projects are least approved. It is very necessary to stick to their eligibility criteria for the success in applications
If the applications are successful, a lease is provided to the applicants. This will be a short term lease to cover up the construction period. After the construction long term lease is provided. The crown land will be titled as prescribed property. It will be registered in the lease thereafter.
Current Status of land grants
The federal government minimizes the distribution of free land. There are a lot of scams or misleading information regarding this. Mail letters are sent with scam advertisements. These are meant to steal or rob money among the common public. Nowadays there are selected states, where the land grants are given free. Some of them are Alaska, Minnesota, North Dakota, Kansas, etc.
To maintain the grant for the land
It is very important to know how to maintain grants. The settlers are entitled to a small fee for the land. They should make some improvements in the land during their settlement. They should live there continuously for 5 years.
The main benefit
The biggest advantage of land grants is that it enhanced the settlement in the west by improving the transportation, construction of rail services, etc.
The land grant universities/colleges provide better access to higher education to all classes of citizens. It also greatly improved the agriculture as well as science sectors.
The government mainly focused on providing high-quality education through universities as well as colleges. As a beginning step, they distributed land grants to respective states. Michigan University, Cornell school were awarded land grants in the beginning.
Simultaneously the land grants were distributed to entrepreneurs & businessmen for the construction of public amenities, rails, roads, canals, etc. This was a slow process. So to accelerate the settlement & improve mobility in the areas, the land grants were also distributed among individuals.
The veterans were the major groups who received the grants. Later on, the veterans sold the lands to people who wish to settle in the designated areas.
Does the government give free land?
The government gives free land in certain parts of the United States to improve the settlement in the areas. They also provide financial assistance depending upon your job income. Proper applications are to be made to access these grants in the below regions.
All the regions are beautiful with the best school systems. The rents are also reasonable in the regions. Each region has its requirements listed in the application criteria. Online applications can be made through the websites.
All supporting documentation is to be attached along with the application. The information provided in the application should be true. Once the applications are successful, the house construction should also be completed in 1 year from signing the agreement of the land grant.
It is mandatory to stay there for 1 year. Each city has specifications for the house. The house should strictly comply with the stated requirements. Below you can find the areas where the grants are provided,
The land grants available currently are listed above. These places are very quiet & refreshing different from city life. You can enjoy being close to nature with so much peace. It is ideal if you have a remote or home-based online job. You can begin a new life & get sufficient financial aid from the government for your dream home.
In many parts of the world, in different countries, the government is looking to bring life in certain regions by inviting settlement. To attract people to such areas, the government provides land grants for their permanent settlement. This practice was common in the olden days. But now, it is confined to only scarcely populated regions. This is a very good initiative by the governments to make the regions active by inviting inhabitants.