Alaska State Land Sales General Information
How the State Sells Land
The State of Alaska sells land to the public through several different programs: a Sealed-Bid Auction, Over-the-Counter (OTC), and Remote Recreational Cabin Sites (RRCS) staking. The following is a brief description of each of these types of sales to help you understand which is right for you.
For all land sale programs, DNR will finance the purchase through a land sale contract with a down payment of 5% of the purchase price. Please see the contracts section for details of contract length and interest rates.
Sealed Bid Auction
The Sealed Bid Auction, detailed in the Auction brochure, consists of parcels which have already been surveyed and appraised. The auction will have a bidding period and a minimum bid based on the appraised value. By law, you must be an Alaska resident to participate in the auction. There is a limit of 2 parcels per bidder in this year's annual auction. This year, DNR will accept bids from March 24 to July 5, 2017 and the bids will be opened on July 12. Alaska residents: the auction gives you an exclusive opportunity to buy a piece of state land!
Over-the-Counter (OTC) sales follow the Auction, and allow anyone, including Alaska residents, non-residents, and businesses to buy land offered over-the-counter on a first come-first-served basis at a fixed price.
After the 2017 Auction, remaining parcels will be made available over-the-counter. New for 2016, DNR has made changes to the procedures for Over-the-Counter sales. DNR has discontinued the use of Initial Over-the-Counter (IOTC) offerings and will offer parcels not sold through regular competitive auction through the following modified OTC process.
1st OTC Offering #80: Newly available OTC parcels will be priced at 30% above their appraised fair market value for the first two weeks they are available (from 10 am July 26, 2017 until 5 pm on August 8, 2017). Over-the-Counter parcels from previous Auctions (#478 or prior) will not change in price during this period and will remain available at their appraised value.
2nd OTC Offering #480: Parcels that remain unsold after August 9, 2016 will then be made available over-the-counter at 15% above their appraised fair market value from 10 am on August 9, 2017 until 5 pm on August 22, 2017. Over-the-Counter parcels from previous Auctions (#478 or prior) will not change in price during this period and will remain available at their appraised value.
Remaining parcels will be made available over-the-counter at their appraised fair market value beginning at 10 am on August 23, 2017. These parcels remain available until they are sold.
Remote Recreational Cabin Sites (RRCS)
The Remote Recreational Cabin Sites (RRCS) staking program offers Alaskans a chance to stake their own parcel in a remote area. The next offering is tentatively planned for 2017. Alaska residents can apply for one or more areas that are of interest to them, but may only win an authorization to stake in one area. DNR then holds a drawing for each area being offered and drawing winners will have the opportunity to stake their own parcel within the staking area. Stakers will receive detailed instructions shortly after the drawing with general information as well as specific restrictions on the area in which they are authorized to stake. Stakers must mark the corners of their parcel and brush the lot lines, to prepare the parcel for survey and appraisal. Participants then lease the parcel from the state while DNR surveys and appraises the parcel. After the parcel has been surveyed and appraised, the staker then has the opportunity to purchase the parcel at the appraised value. From time to time, parcels created through the RRCS program are returned to state ownership or are created administratively; you will see a number of these RRCS parcels for sale in this auction brochure.
History of State Land Sale Offerings
Here is a brief history of our programs and how they have evolved over time.
1959 Public outcry auctions From Statehood through 1975 DNR leased or sold subdivided parcels of land mostly by public outcry auction.
1964 State auction sales of borough land. From 1964 to 1975 DNR also subdivided and sold parcels for new boroughs.
1966 Open-To-Entry (OTE) program Between 1966 and 1974, the State's first stake-it-yourself program allowed individuals to stake, survey, and purchase their own parcel of State land in remote areas.
1966 Agricultural Sales Agricultural land sales encouraged development of land suitable for agriculture.
1977 Homesite program The State's first "prove-up" program allowed Alaskans to build a dwelling and occupy the land for a certain number of years to qualify for a reduced purchase price.
1978 Lottery Sales Between 1978 and 1990, DNR subdivided and sold large tracts of State land by lottery. Alaska residency was required for most parcels, with sale at the appraised fair market value. Lotteries were held in the vicinity of the land being offered, and applicants had to attend in person.
1979 Remote parcel program replaced the open-to-entry (OTE) program. This program allowed for larger parcels than the OTE program and restricted eligibility to Alaska residents.
1984 Homestead program replaced the remote parcel program, with many similarities. There was a prove-up option, in addition to the ability to purchase the parcel outright.
1988 Land sales stalled until 1999 due to various issues, including Mental Health Trust Land litigation and a lack of funding.
DNR initiated the current land sales programs in the late 1990s.
1999 Sealed-bid auction sales DNR began reoffering its inventory of unsold and foreclosed parcels.
2000 Over-the-Counter Non-residents and businesses may join Alaskans in purchasing parcels not sold at the sealed-bid auction.
2001 Remote Recreational Cabin Sites (RRCS) revived the staking program without the prove-up requirement. DNR completes the survey and appraisal of the parcel during the lease period, after which the staker has the opportunity to purchase their parcel at fair market value.
2004 New Subdivisions were added to the auctions. DNR offers a combination of newly surveyed subdivisions, parcels being reoffered from previously-surveyed subdivisions and parcels created through the RRCS program.
Public Information Offices
Southcentral Regional Office
550 West 7th Avenue, Suite 1260
Anchorage, AK 99501-3557
Northern Regional Office
3700 Airport Way
Fairbanks, AK 99709-4699
Southeast Regional Office
Southeast Regional Office
400 Willoughby Ave., Suite 400
Juneau, AK 99801