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Iowa Farmland Down Again

by Ken Root & Whitney Flach

Listen Here: Agribusiness Matters 9-15-16

Iowa farmland has fallen 30% from the highs in 2013. Realtor’s subtracted 4% for the past six months in a survey released yesterday.

The Iowa Realtors Land Institute, does a survey of farmland values every six months.  Based on the period from March 1 to September 1, the average drop was 3.7% statewide. Southwest Iowa fell by 5.8%. Still land values are high by historical standards.

Statewide, dividing crop land in to three categories, High Quality land was worth $8,800 per acre.  Medium Quality, 6,433 and low quality came in at 4,214. Non tillable pasture land was estimated to be worth $2,687 per acre and Timberland was worth $2,243.

For the past year, combining this decrease with the -5.0% decrease reported in March 2016, indicates a statewide average decrease of -8.7% since September 1, 2015.

The high was reached in 2013, when crop process were almost double their current level. The total decrease in land values has been 25-30% according to surveys of the last three years.

Realtor’s said Factors contributing to current farmland values include: lower commodity prices and limited amount of land on the market. Other factors include: lack of stable alternative investments, cash on hand, and increasing interest rates.