March 8, 2012
UNL Ag Economics Survey Details Increases in Farm Land Values
Cropland Values and Cash Rental Rates Reported by District and Land Type
The 2012 UNL Nebraska Farm Real Estate Survey confirms what most people close to agriculture already knew – agricultural land values across the state have shot upward in recent months. Preliminary survey results show the state’s all-land average value as of February 1, 2012 was $2,410 per acre, 31% above the year earlier level. The annual gain, in both dollar amount and percentage, is the largest ever recorded in the 34-year history of the UNL land market survey series.
Cropland, particularly, showed pronounced value gains in every region of the state. In several areas, values for some cropland classes rose 35% or more during the 12-month period. Clearly, a booming cash-grain economy in 2011 translated into spirited bidding for cropland. And at the same time that
demand was robust, the amount of land for sale in any given local area was generally minimal. UNL survey reporters frequently commented that the land transfer market has been “so thin” (limited sales activity) that it is difficult to get a good reading on the market. In short, there are many “wannabe buyers” with few “wannabe sellers.”
The grazing land classes showed more modest value gains for the year, but overall the state still showed a 19% increase for non-tillable grazing land. The tillable grazing land class (land considered to be potentially converted to cropland) recorded significantly higher values and larger higher percentage value gains in those areas of the state where no moratoriums are precluding irrigation expansion.
See more survey results and tables of average reported values and cash rental rates by district and land type in this week's Cornhusker Economics article.
UNL Professor of Agricultural Economics