The land values survey released this week by the Iowa Chapter of the Realtors Land Institute shows a one-percent reduction in the average cropland values in the state.
Spokesman Kyle Hansen says the change in value depends on which part of the state you are in. “We range anywhere form a 2.8% percent reduction in north-central Iowa, to a 3% increase in southeast Iowa,” Hansen says. He says a better outlook for crop yields help boost the prices in southeast Iowa.
“Southeast Iowa has really been dry the last couple of years. They really suffered with low yields during those times, and it just doesn’t put anyone in the buying mood,” according to Hansen. “This last summer, late summer, they started to get some rainfall and were able to get some really good yields on their beans. It changed it from a negative outlook to a little more positive near-future look for them.”
The north-central areas of the state saw the impact go the other way. “They had too much rain and we had a respondent yesterday indicate that there was 55 inches of rain in Kossuth County last year. And that’s just a lot of moisture to get off the farm,” Hansen says.
Hansen says the ongoing trade talks do have some impact on farmland values. “It does play a factor — primarily because it causes uncertainty in the market,” Hansen says. “Anytime you have something you can’t wrap your hands around our your mind around how that’s going to help or hurt you, causing that uncertainty can certainly affect your buying decisions or selling decisions.” The latest land value survey for the September 2018 to March 2019 period.
Hansen says the longer view of prices shows no big ups or downs. “Taken the whole picture looking at it — I’d say we are at a steady period of land values — with areas of weakness. I really thing we are going to see a lot of volatility very dependent upon location of where farms sell,” Hansen says. The Realtors Land Institute has conducted their survey since 1978.