Illustrated Guide with Simple Rules & Tips for Obtaining Permission from the Owner

Not to make a boring set of rules, I added some dark humor to these instructions by including a few "old" photographs. No offense to anyone!

Gaining permission is important not only for you, but for all of us. The more trespassers we have within our hobby, the harder it will be to hold on to our freedom and rights.

Permission to Metal Detect is GrantedTo some detectorists, getting permission seems to be a difficult task, almost like "permission impossible," and they find many excuses to avoid doing it. Instead, they should think practically: getting permission to hunt a site gives a detectorist more comfort and peace of mind to be more productive.

Obtaining permission is easy if you follow these simple rules:

1) Always try to find the actual owner of the property you intend to metal detect. Never accept the next door neighbor's, "I don't think they would mind." If the owner is not around, leave and come back another time.

Sometimes it is hard to determine or find the property owner when the posted signs do not show the owner's name, address, or contacting phone number. Sometimes there are no any "Posted" signs placed along the property boundaries. It does not mean nobody owns the land.

To determine the land ownership and obtain the owner's contacting info, you might visit the tax collector's office at local City Hall and find the tax records for a particular land parcel. If your search turns out to be unsuccessful, it will be up to your own judgment to decide whether to take your chance in metal detecting at this property without getting into trouble or go somewhere else.

When you see a sign "KEEP OUT," simply do just that - keep out. Unlike the "Posted" signs, the "Keep Out" signs certainly convey the owner's wish not to see anybody on the property. And in 99.9% of cases, it is a reality. These people definitely do not want anyone to know what they are growing and "cooking" inside their "estates," and they might be "armed up to their teeth" to keep it that way.

2) When you find the owner, do not call him/her on the phone, go directly to the front door.

3) Ask for permission the same day you intend to metal detect, but DO NOT knock on doors very early in the morning, especially on the weekends. Give people a chance to wake up, dress, and have their breakfast.

4) Leave your metal detector and digging tools in the car to avoid arousing suspicion and fear of the unknown. There are still many people who have not yet seen a metal detector. Should one of your digging tools happen to be a heavy-duty knife, the owner's answer may be a quick "NO" when he/she sees it hanging from your belt.

Leave your metal detector, shovel, pickax, pouch, probe, gun, and all kinds of strange or scary looking things in your car. Keep your hands empty when approaching the property owner or his house.

Metaldetectorist with All Treasure Hunting Equipment

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