Special Agricultural Homestead

This program allows farmers to retain the agricultural homestead even if the owner does not live on the farm or on any farm as long as they meet all of the following requirements:
  • The owner must live within four cites, townships or a combination thereof from the farm;
  • The owner or a qualifying relative of the owner* must actively farm the land;
  • The owner must be a Minnesota resident
  • Neither the owner nor their spouse claim another agricultural homestead in Minnesota;
  • The farm consists of at least 40 contiguous acres.
The Minnesota Department of Revenue has published a flow chart to help navigate the Special Agricultural Homestead program. You may reference this when trying to determine whether your farming situation qualifies.

There are many applications for the program, dependent upon what the ownership/farming scenario is. To have an application mailed to you, please contact our office or the assessor for your jurisdiction. In addition to the application, you will need to provide a 156EZ form from the Farm Service Agency stating the owner and the operator of the farm, and (for first time application) a copy of the previous income tax year's Schedule F or a letter from your accountant which states that you filed one. Applications will be required on an annual basis, and must be received by December 15 for taxes payable the following year.

Important Information for Farms Owned by Entities
Ownership of farms has changed significantly over the past two decades. Sole proprietorships have been replaced by different entities including partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, corporations, and trusts. It is important to note that all entities which are regulated under Minnesota Statutes, section 500.24, must be authorized to own and farm land under that section in order to qualify for homestead. Entities including corporations, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, and trusts must register with  the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) by filing the Minnesota Corporate Farm Application prior to purchasing or engaging in farming of agricultural land. A copy of the application can be viewed here.

The following is a summary of entities which are and are not subject to this law:
Entities subject to law:
Entities NOT subject to law:
Corporations (S-corps, C-corps, etc.)
Individual Owners (sole proprietorships)
 Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)
General Partnerships
 Limited Partnerships (LPs)
Limited Liability Partnerships (LLLPs)
 Limited Liability Limited Partnerships (LLLPs)

Once an entity that is subject to the law meets the requirements of section 500.24, that entity is issued a letter of approval and is issued a letter of approval and is required to annually verify eligibility information with the MDA. The entity's name will also appear on MDA's database of approved entities. This database can be searched here.

With one exception, properties held by different entities cannot be linked together, nor can the homestead be carried over from one entity to another. Examples include, but are not limited to:
  • individually-owned property to entity-owned property;
  • partnership-owned property to corporation-owned property; and
  • one partnership to another partnership
For further questions about farms owned by entities or qualifying for the Special Agricultural Homestead classification, please contact our office at 320-693-5205.

(*) A qualifying relative for agricultural homestead purposes is a child, grandchild, brother, sister, mother, or father