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The Land Market in Iowa and Wisconsin
You are here:   Blog  »  Agricultural Real Estate  »  The Land Market in Iowa and Wisconsin

February 3, 2020 

What started out as a slow year in farmland sales has now picked up the pace as additional farms come on the market.  

  

"The first six months of 2019 were about as slow as I have seen the land market.  Auction activity really picked up for Farmers National Company agents through the fall months and for the winter sales season" according to Sam Kain, area sales manager for Farmer National Company. 

  

The on-going lower supply of land for sale on the market has helped support land prices. Kain comments, "Good quality cropland remains steady to strong. Farmers National sold a tract of land in Iowa for $13,000 per acre a few months back which was definitely above expectations. Lower quality land takes more time and effort to get it sold which is more typical of Wisconsin farms due to the financial stress of the past few years in dairy. Good quality cropland sells well in the state while lower quality land or properties with dairy facilities struggle to sell." 

  

Looking ahead into the coming year, attention turns to what is going to impact the farm economy and the land market. Producers are optimistic about trade improvements with China but are now concerned about how soon grain prices might improve given the epidemic outbreak and world grain trade fluctuations. Financial stress has increased for some individual farm operations and in areas that may have had below average yields.    

  

Buying demand for good cropland remains steady to stronger in areas, while demand for lower quality cropland is more cautious. Interest in recreational land remains steady and for specific properties, buying interest can push up the price. 

  

With the current land market sitting on a plateau for the past several years, landowners are asking questions about what to do if they are thinking of selling their farm. They are seeking out trusted sources who can give them opinions and insight into the direction of the land market.    

Randy Dickhut  

Senior Vice President - Real Estate Operations 

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