Estates versus Private Regions
An estate is a term for a group of one or more Private Regions that belong to one Resident.
- Each square on the map is a region.
- A Resident can own many estates.
- An estate can never have less than one region.
- Regions owned by different Residents cannot be in the same estate.
Regions in the same estate share certain common settings, including but not limited to:
- Ban lists
- Sun settings
- Estate managers
There are a few other differences:
- There is no charge to change an estate name, but there is a nominal charge to change a Private Region name.
- You can request transfer of ownership of regions, but not entire estates.
Private Regions overview
Private Regions are regions in Second Life that are explicitly paid for and controlled by a Resident.
In general, Private Region ownership is an excellent choice for Residents who:
- Wish to enjoy land ownership separate from the ever-changing Second Life mainland.
- Want to build and control a Second Life experience with or without adjacent neighbors.
- Require more land controls than those provided on the mainland.
- Want to name the region their land is in (within the naming guidelines).
Additional types of Private Regions
In addition to standard Private Regions, existing region owners may purchase Homestead Regions. Homesteads are less expensive than standard Private Regions but are designed for lighter use and can support fewer objects and avatars than a normal region.
You may also choose to convert one or more of your Private Regions into multiple Openspaces or Homesteads, or you may choose to convert some of your Openspaces or Homesteads to different region types. After any conversion, you must always have at least one standard Private Region remaining. For full details on converting between different region types, see Converting Private Regions.
A Homestead is a type of Private Region intended for such purposes as:
- Low-density rentals
- Light commercial use
- Quiet residential use
Other specifications for Homesteads include:
- Available to full region owners only
- Lower price than a full region
- Events and classifieds are permitted
Comes with lower usage limits than full regions:
- Land capacity set at 5000
- Concurrent avatar limit set at 20
Pricing for Homesteads is as follows:
- Setup fee of $149
- Monthly fee of $109
Homesteads for educators and non-profits
We do not offer discounts on any type of Private Regions, but qualified educators and non-profits are allowed to order a Homestead Region without owning a standard Private Region, unlike regular Residents. If you represent a qualified non-profit organization that wants to order a Homestead Region, submit a support case to do so.
Land parcels on Homestead Regions
Homesteads are approved for rental use within the Region limitations we have set.
Openspace Regions are a type of Private Region intended for light use such as water, hills, or forest. They are not intended for building, home rentals, or events. To own an Openspace Region, you must also own a normal Private Region.
Openspace specifications include:
- Available to full region owners only
- Lower price than a full region or Homestead
- Events and classifieds are not permitted
Comes with lower usage limits than full regions or Homesteads:
- Land capacity set at 1000
- Concurrent avatar limit set at 10
- New Openspace regions are no longer available for sale.
- Monthly fee of $60
For more information about Openspace Regions, see the article titled Openspace Regions.
Buying Private Regions
Land parcels on your regions
Parcels can be sold to other Residents, but you remain responsible for the monthly payments. You can make arrangements for these new parcel owners to pay you for use of the estate, but that's between you and the other Residents. Many estate owners use the estate's covenant to explain their payment structure.
Transferring or canceling Private Region ownership
You have a couple of options:
- You may transfer ownership of the Private Region to another Resident. This requires both you and the buyer to enter support tickets with certain details about the transaction. See Managing Private Regions for more details on the transfer process, cost, and timeframe.
You may abandon your Private Region to Linden Lab. There is no fee to do so. No refunds will be given, and you will have the use of your region until the end of the current billing cycle. You need to notify the Concierge staff of your intention by submitting a ticket.
- Go to the Support Portal and click New Ticket Submission.
- In the Ticket Type dropdown, select Land and Region Issues.
- In the Region Request dropdown, select Region Cancellation Request.
- Fill out the requested details, and at the bottom, click Finish to submit the ticket.
You can see billing dates and fees for all of your Private Regions at the Land Portal. If your Private Region fees are invoiced, you can see the date your billing cycle ends by logging into your Netsuite account.
When your ticket is processed, you'll receive a response indicating that the region will be taken offline on its next billing date and that you will not be charged any further maintenance fees. Please pick up or return any content on the region; any inventory remaining after the billing date will be deleted.
An estate is a named collection of one or more Private Regions. Estate-level controls allow you to administer and make adjustments to all regions in a given estate. Since all Private Regions must be in an estate, all Private Region owners are also estate owners by default, even if you only have one Private Region.
Estate owners can:
- Acquire a large amount of land easily.
- Enjoy land ownership separate from the ever-changing Second Life mainland.
- Build and control their Second Life experience without adjacent neighbors.
- Exercise more land controls than those provided on the mainland.
- Name the regions they own.
Transferring or canceling an estate
It is possible to transfer an estate by transferring all Private Regions in the estate to another Resident. For details on transferring Private Regions, see the Managing Private Regions.
If you would like to terminate ownership of an estate without transferring it, please submit a support case of the type Land & Region > Region Cancellation Request, with all the relevant fields completed.
Additional features and controls for Private Regions and Estates
Estate owners possess a broad array of powers and options for maintaining their Private Regions and shaping them to fit their desired appearance. Many of these options can be found in the Second Life Viewer's Region/Estate window. For a more exhaustive list of management options such as region rollbacks, covenants, and terraforming tools, see Managing Private Regions.
Private Region types
Undeveloped regions are delivered completely empty of objects and ready to be built and shaped to your liking. Themed regions contain a ready-made build which has been optimized to get you started on your new land in minutes, and which can be futher modified to your liking. All themes are available as Full Regions, and most as Homestead Regions.
The table below explains the different types of Private Regions available for purchase in the Second Life® virtual world.
|Full Regions||Homestead Regions||Openspace Regions|
|Description||The premier region product which offers the highest performance.||Lower performance than a Full Region and intended for low-density rentals, quiet residential, or light commercial use. Available only to Residents who own at least one Full Region.||Intended for very low-impact scenic use such as ocean, forest, or countryside. No longer available for sale.|
|Size||65,536 m2||65,536 m2||65,536 m2|
|No longer available for sale.|
|Events & classifieds?||Yes||Yes||No|
|Conversion to Full Region allowed?||N/A||Yes||Yes|
Purchasing from the land store
Log into the Second Life Land Portal.
Tip: Read the introduction explaining the difference between developed land and undeveloped land. The former is great for a quick start, while the latter is the choice if you want to create everything from scratch.
- Click either Buy an Undeveloped Private Region or Buy a Themed Private Region. If you don't need the amount of control and space that comes with a region, you can choose to Buy Mainland.
- You are presented with thumbnail images and descriptions of several appealing choices. These are all starting points for your creative vision, and you can always reshape your land later.
- Click Continue to proceed.
Use the comparison details on the "Land Detail" page to decide whether you want a Full Region or Homestead. Click Choose under your selection to continue.
Note: You can only purchase a Homestead region if you own or are also going to buy one or more full regions.
EXCEPTION: Educational institutions. See Information for educators.
- On the "Name your land" page, type a name in the Create a Region Name field and click Check Availability. If your selected name is not taken, you can proceed.
- Region Coordinates are automatically filled in; these coordinates are where your Region will be physically located on the World Map. If you'd prefer to override them, click [change], then click a map square that isn't crossed out in red. You can click the arrow buttons to look at different areas on the map. You can also search for another region to be near (for example, one that a friend or colleague owns).
- Take a few seconds to fill out the brief survey at the bottom.
- Click the Add to Cart button.
Once all details have been successfully verified, you can shop for more regions (same steps as above) or click Proceed to Checkout.
Note: You may have up to 10 items in your cart at once. Items don't stay in your cart forever; they stay in your cart until you or someone else buys them. A region is held as yours for 30 minutes after your last activity in the Land Store. If someone else buys it (or a neighboring region) after those 30 minutes have elapsed, it will appear in your cart as unavailable.
- On the "Real Estate: Shopping Cart" page, click Place Order to confirm your purchase.
Once your region purchase is complete, you receive an email with the details. A new region is generally delivered within 15 minutes. Occasional service updates may affect that time, so see the Second Life Grid Status Reports page if it's taking longer than expected.
New regions are delivered with a default maturity rating of Moderate. You can customize this using the Region/Estate tools:
- From the Viewer menus, go to World > Place Profile > Region/Estate.
- Click the Region tab.
- From the Rating dropdown, select either or Adult.
- Click Apply.
Guidelines for naming Private Regions
Follow these guidelines when naming your Private Region (island) or estate.
Private Region or estate names:
- Must not already be in use.
- Must be more than 2, but less than 26 characters (spaces count).
- Must contain three words or less.
- Must use only alphanumeric characters (no punctuation).
- Must not be the name of a real life city (however "New York Island" or "Los Angeles City" are fine).
- Cannot include SL, Linden, Linden Lab, Second Life etc in the name.
- Must comply with General maturity rating guidelines.
Do not use the following as a Private Region name or estate name:
- The name of another person to the extent that it may cause deception or confusion.
- A name which violates any trademark right, copyright, or other proprietary right.
- A name which may mislead other users to believe you to be an employee of Linden Lab.
- A name which Linden Lab deems in its discretion to be vulgar or otherwise offensive (obscenities in any language and however spelled; language that is racist, sexist or otherwise derogatory in nature).
Linden Lab reserves the right to change Private Region and estate names as we see fit.
Ordering adjacent regions
It is possible for two people to order adjacent Private Regions. The first person must:
- Order a Private Region, then log into the Second Life website and click the Land Manager tab.
- Click the My Regions tab.
- Click the estate name of the estate for which you want to allow neighbors.
- In the Allowed Neighbors column, click the edit link for a specific region.
- Type the name of the Resident you want to allow as a neighbor, then click Add.
- Click Close.
The second person must
- Order a Private Region as described in Purchasing from the land store.
- During the ordering process, you may place your new region adjacent to the first person's region.
Private Region customizations
With your region order, you can specify the following customizations:
- Name: You can select a unique name when creating the region. See the Guidelines for Private Region Naming for details.
- Terrain shape: You can select from one of the six predesigned templates (including flat green land and open water).
- Estate: You can assign your region to its own estate or to an estate you already own (with other Private Regions owned by you). Your Estate tools allow you to control settings for more than one region at once.
Customizations after purchase
As estate owner, you have access to the Region/Estate menu (under World > Place Profile). This provides you with several other options to customize your region:
- Water height: You may specify the height sea level reaches on your region.
- Terrain textures: You can use almost any texture for terrain. You can specify low-resolution textures as well as high-resolution textures and configure the elevation range at which they shift from one to another. There's more information on terrain textures in the Estate Tools article.
- Fixed sun position: You can lock the sun at a specific time of day or night.
- Terraform: You can lower or raise your terrain 100m from the height at which it was created. This is usually sufficient for nearly any type of terrain (including very dramatic cliffs).
- Custom terrain files: You can save your terrain to a .RAW image file, edit it in a program such as Photoshop, and upload it back into Second Life to make wide-sweeping changes to your Region's terrain instantly.
- Agent limit: You may control how many avatars can visit your Regon at the same time, anywhere from one to over one hundred.
- Parcel activity: You can decide whether to allow renters to sell their parcels to other Residents, and whether they can subdivide the parcels they rent.
- Teleport routing: You can use a telehub to force Residents to land at a specific location in your region, or you can allow direct teleporting so Residents can use landmarks or the world map teleport wherever they like.
- Access: You can close your Private Region to everyone except your friends and colleagues, or you can open it to everyone in Second Life! You may also ban specific Residents by name if they cause trouble.
Renting a region for a special event
Got a plan for a large event and need a temporary place to have it? Linden Lab offers temporary Full Region rentals. Rental amounts are to be paid in full at the beginning of the rental period.
Land rental rates are different depending on whether you want to rent Private Regions or space on the mainland.
- Private Regions are US$50 per region per day.
- Mainland regions are L$4,000 per region per day.
Mainland rental regions are Iridium, Osmium, Palladium, Platinum, Rhodium, and Ruthenium (named after the platinum group metals.)
- Reservations must be made 2 weeks in advance and are on a first-come first-served basis.
- Residents must include a full description of the event when applying.
- Minimal rental period is 3 days.
- Residents are allowed to terraform the land and do not incur tier fees for temporary ownership of the land.
- Residents cannot transfer the land during the rental period.
- The original state of the regions will be saved immediately before the rental period. At the conclusion of the rental period, the regions will be restored.
If you're interested in renting, please submit a Land and Region Issues ticket with the Region Request field set to Region Rental from our Support page.
Additional information you'll need to submit includes:
- The number of regions you want
- Rental start and end dates
- Whether or not you need to be able to terraform the regions
- A full description of your event
Invoicing for special orders
If you are an educator, non-profits organization, Resident under 18 years old or a business entities that requires a formal invoice, then place your order for private regions with the Special Island Order Form.
Use the special order form under these conditions:
- Orders for eligible educational institution or not-for-profit. There is no longer an educational discount, however, your status as an educator or non-profit does require verification, and there is a minimum initial purchase of five regions to qualify for invoicing. The five region minimum purchase requirement does not apply to currently-invoiced customers.
- For all under 18 Resident, non-Linden Home, land orders (requires parental/guardian approval if under 18). Note: users under the age of 18 cannot purchase Linden Homes.
- Any order requiring an invoice (payments by wire transfer, check or credit card). Specifically for business entities purchasing more than five regions (minimum requirement does not apply to currently invoiced customers) requiring a formal invoice/receipt or PO# type process. PO# not required at the time of ordering.
If your purchase does not fall into these categories, then place your order at the Land Store.
- All orders placed through the Special Island Order Form require advance payment of six or twelve months maintenance fees.
- Maintenance fees are added to your island order invoice based on the payment cycle chosen at a rate of $249.00.
- Payment is made from the invoice which is issued upon the delivery of your island. Your first invoice will include both the setup and the first cycle of maintenance.
Where to get an invoice
Second Life offers the invoicing option though the special orders selection in the Land Store. You can also access invoicing directly from specialorders.secondlife.com.
You need to provide the following information to use the invoicing option. Please read the guidelines below carefully. If your questions are not answered by this document, please submit a Support ticket to request explanation (include "Education" in the ticket summary).
Approval and Private Region delivery
Submitting an order does not obligate you to pay immediately; payment is made once the Private Region has been delivered and the invoice sent.
- When you place the order, you receive a sales order confirmation. This is merely an order confirmation, not a notice of delivery.
- Once you place the order, your order enters the approval queue.
- Once the order is approved, you receive an approval email and your order is placed in the delivery queue.
- After approval, delivery time under normal circumstances is 10-15 business days.
You cannot make a payment until you receive an invoice, which you then have 30 days to pay. Invoices for maintenance are emailed when the payment schedule is ready for renewal.
You have access to your account in Netsuite (Second Life's special orders system) through the special ordering website.
In your Netsuite account, you will be able to:
- View your sales order.
- Add your credit card information.
- Pay your invoice with a credit card.
You may pay via check, credit card or wire transfer. We neither accept Paypal nor use funds from your Second Life account to pay for your invoiced Private Region order.
See Account balance for more information on paying by wire transfer. You must pay your bank's wiring charges, which are added to your invoice total. Be sure to reference your invoice number in the wire details.
To pay by credit card:
- Log into your Netsuite account. You are directed to menu options.
- Select Make a Payment. All outstanding invoices appear.
- Move to the bottom of the page, where you may add your credit card information for payment of the invoices you select.
Check or Bank Draft
Please submit a check or bank draft to:
Linden Research Inc
PO Box 39000
San Francisco CA 94111
Those who use Purchase Order numbers should send us the required vendor forms for completion. We will add the PO# to the invoice as soon as we receive it.
Other useful information:
- Federal Tax ID#: 94-3364615
- VAT #: EU826011179
You may choose to convert some of your Private Regions from one Private Region type to another. This article covers the different scenarios and costs associated with each possible conversion.
For information on converting your Regions, please see our article on Converting Private Regions.
Edited by Jeremy Linden
Updated Land Impact
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