September 2019’s Farmland Prices mirrored what they did in 2017/2018 especially at auction. Preharvest auctions that are strictly row crop farms can be a gamble, due to a few hot topics from our experience when sold preharvest. Operators are concerned with an early frost, wondering what yields will be, and have yet to harvest any of the inputs they have been putting in the ground all year. Investors are wondering if there will be an influx of sales post-harvest; flooding the market and creating a buying opportunity, so they remained patient with plenty of time before year end.
The data from 2017 and 2018 similarly showed that good farms sold at expected prices from summer sales; primarily to neighboring operators or exchange buyers, however poor-quality farms were very hard to trade at market prices and have a qualified buyer bidding. When sold post-harvest the good farms brought the same or more, and the lower quality tracts had buyers at expected market prices. When timberland or multi-parcel bidding opportunities were added to the mix, they sold even higher especially if hunting rights were given for the current calendar year prior to closing.
Timberland prices for hunting, rural building, and timber investments has remained strong overall. We had a lot of questions regarding diseases affecting land prices and the answer is yes. There are less buyers for land in the areas that are having all the targeted animals removed. Timberland prices are determined by many factors; just like tillable acres, if you are interested in deer hunting and want a quality experience, you must go where the deer are. The negative will always have a positive effect elsewhere, and we have seen that evidence in hunting land prices continuing to be very strong in markets that do not have disease concerns.
We are very excited for the upcoming Hunting and Harvest seasons. Our agents enjoy few things more than having a client take an excellent crop, or world class animal off a property we helped them purchase. If you or someone you know is interested in buying or selling land give one of them a call. They are a wealth of knowledge in their market and happy to help anyway they can.