The Real Farmland Market

By Elizabeth Williams, DTN Special Correspondent

10 /16 /18

By Elizabeth Williams, DTN special Correspondent


INDIANOLA, Iowa (DTN) -- Coffee shop conversation on the land market tends to focus on the "whoppers."

Two 80-acre tracts in northwest Iowa's O'Brien County each sold for $14,000 per acre at auction in early September.

In McDonough County in western Illinois, two 40-plus acre parcels recently sold for $12,800 and $13,000 per acre.

In east central Illinois, 991 acres sold to one buyer for $10,322 per acre near Casey, Illinois, at an August auction.

Those sales may grab the headlines, but they are not typical of today's land markets, farmland brokers told DTN. What you don't hear about are the auctions that don't result in a sale.

"We've had four or five recent auctions that ended in no sales," said Howard Halderman, president of Halderman Real Estate Services in Wabash, Indiana. One seller wanted $9,000 per acre, and the bidding topped out at $8,300 per acre.

Brokers say those farms tend to sell privately within a week or so after a no-sale auction.

Brokers say the difference between a strong sale and a no-sale auction is a show-piece farm with financially strong farm neighbors.

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