Farmers National Co: The Eastern Cornbelt Land Market Is Seeing Strong Prices

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Source: blog by Randy Dickhut, Sr VP – Real Estate Operations, Farmers National Co., Omaha, NE

Buying interest in farmland has been stable for the past several years, but the number of callers and buyers grew from summer on through the balance of 2020 according to Linda Brier, Area Sales Manager for Farmers National Company in the eastern Cornbelt. Owning farmland has always been a priority for farmers, but interest in the real asset by investors grew the past year.

Prices for top-quality cropland sold at Farmers National Company auctions and through its listings increased significantly since before harvest. Demand for good farmland has definitely increased and we are seeing good cropland sell for prices last seen in 2013.

Government payments, low interest rates, and rising grain prices sustained farmers’ interest in buying land especially in the fall time frame. The boost in net farm income provided the financial comfort for farmers to more aggressively step into the land market. Add in the growing number of investors who want to own farmland and you have a strong demand driven land market comments Brier.

Public auctions are a common means of selling farmland in the Midwest. Covid-19 restrictions changed how farms are being sold depending on the time and the rules of the area. Farmers National Company has the most complete tool box of auction and sales methods of anyone to sell land. This includes all variations of online auctions. Farmers National Company agents use the best sales method available to bring about a successful sale for our clients observed Brier.

Farmers National Company’s land sales volume was up 35% during the final quarter of 2020 compared to last year despite there remaining a normal to lower supply of land for sale in the overall market. Looking ahead, Brier thinks investor interest and farmer demand coupled with a low supply of good cropland on the market will continue to drive the land prices in 2021.