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How is Timber Valued in Illinois?


Count On Timber Appraisal Experts

When it comes to unlocking the potential revenue from acres of untouched forest land through timber sales in Illinois, having a realistic expectation of the financial returns becomes paramount. The magnitude of this return is tied to various factors, and the services of a timber appraisal expert are indispensable in navigating this terrain. At Walnut Timber Buyers, our team of seasoned appraisers is well-versed in discussing variables that contribute to the valuation of standing wood.


The valuation process conducted by Walnut Timber Buyers’ appraisers involves a meticulous examination of several key elements. The specific species of trees on your property play a significant role, as different hardwood species hold distinct market values. The diameter of the trees is another crucial factor, influencing the volume of usable timber. Additionally, the merchantable height, indicating the usable length of the timber, contributes to the overall appraisal. By taking into account these vital aspects, our expert appraisers ensure a comprehensive and accurate valuation that reflects the unique qualities of your standing wood. So, if you’re wondering about the potential returns from your timber, trust Walnut Timber Buyers’ timber appraisal experts to provide you with an informed and precise assessment, determining the value of timber based on:

  • Species
  • Diameter
  • Merchantable Height
  • Age
  • Blemishes
  • Location

Situations That Can Impact The Price Of Your Lumber


The species of timber plays a pivotal role in determining its value. Different tree species have varying characteristics and qualities that can significantly influence their market demand and price. For instance, hardwood species such as oak, walnut, or cherry are highly sought after for their durability and distinct, rich grains, making them ideal for furniture and cabinetry. On the other hand, softwood species like pine and spruce are commonly used for construction purposes due to their strength and ease of use.


The diameter of your tree is one of its most crucial measurements, as your tree’s diameter can have a significant impact on its value. The diameter of a tree is measured at diameter breast height (DBH), a standard method foresters use to estimate the volume and value of timber. The larger the diameter, the more wood a single tree can provide, enhancing its overall market worth. For instance, trees with a DBH of 18 inches or more are generally of marketable size and provide lumber suitable for a broader range of applications.


Height just as the diameter indicates the volume of wood that can be harvested from the tree’s width, the merchantable height gives an estimate of the volume that can be procured from the tree’slength. Trees with greater merchantable heights are typically more valuable, offering more wood for harvesting. Additionally, taller timber is more viable for longer timber products like beams or utility poles. Furthermore, trees with fewer limbs on their lower trunks – and hence longer merchantable heights – often yield higher-quality lumber.


As a tree ages, it grows in size, thereby increasing the volume of wood that we can harvest and boosting its market value. However, the relationship between age and value isn’t linear. Though not mature, young trees can sometimes be valuable due to the high demand for small-diameter wood, such as pulp wood or veneer, in specific markets. On the other hand, very old trees might not necessarily be more valuable. Past a certain age, trees might become prone to disease, decay, or other damage, which could decrease their timber quality and, thus, their value.


If there are blemishes on your tree, they can range from scars, knots, and hollows to fungal or insect damage. The presence of blemishes often indicates a lower quality of wood, which can limit its use and lower its market value. For instance, a clear piece of timber (one without blemishes) is in higher demand as it is desirable for aesthetic applications like furniture making, flooring, or cabinetry. In contrast, a blemished piece of timber may have its uses restricted to less visible or critical applications, such as structural parts or pallets, thus fetching a lower price.


Location is a crucial factor in timber valuation that landowners shouldn’t overlook. The geographic location determines tree growth conditions, impacting their health, growth rate, and value. For example, hardwood species like oak or walnut may fetch higher prices in areas that promote optimal growth. Proximity to timber mills and markets also plays a significant role. Transportation costs can reduce profits if the forest is far away, while closer forests often command higher prices.

Learn From Walnut Timber Buyers

There’s incredible financial potential in the timber on your land. All you need are appraisal experts who can accurately value your trees. Thanks to Walnut Timber Buyers’ professional appraisers, landowners can confidently sell their timber for maximum value. To learn more about Walnut Timber Buyers and our appraisal, harvesting, and timber sale services, call 309-369-9524.

Thank you for your interest in Walnut Timber Buyers. At this time we are only considering projects of 20 or more mature trees. For residential projects and projects of less then 20 trees, please contact your local tree service.