2012 Farmland Leasing Workshops Begin

AMES, Iowa ― More than half of Iowa farmland is rented, and that percentage continues to increase due to the changing demographics of farmland owners. The overall average of typical Iowa farmland cash rental rates increased $38 an acre from 2011 to 2012. These large increases, volatile grain markets and the effects of drought on current production will have a major impact on those making leasing decisions for the coming production year.

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is conducting farmland leasing workshops at many locations in Iowa during July and August. Workshops are designed to assist landowners, tenants and other agri-business professionals with issues related to farmland ownership, management and leasing agreements.

“The 2012 meetings will focus on issues related to drought, land values and rental rates, including using CSRs and other tools for determining a ‘fair’ cash rent,” said Ann Johanns, program specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. Other topics will include the impact of erosion on land values, implications of the proposed Farm Bill and other issues that will impact the next year in agriculture.

Each workshop attendee will receive a 100-page booklet of useful materials about farm leasing arrangements, Johanns said. Workshops will last approximately 2 ½ hours and will be led by Iowa State University Extension farm management specialists.

The Leasing Meetings page (www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm/info/meetings.html) lists available meeting dates, locations, and registration information. Locations will be added as they become available, or contact any county extension office to find the nearest meeting location. The Leasing section (www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm/wdleasing.html) of Ag Decision Maker also provides useful materials for negotiating leases, information on various types of leases, and lease forms, Johanns said.

“Knowing the latest information and where to find the best resources will make decisions easier for you and your clientele. Look to ISU Extension and Outreach and Ag Decision Maker for leasing information this summer,” Johanns said.