ISU Extension News

Extension Communications
3614 Administrative Services Building
Ames, Iowa 50011-3614
(515) 294-9915

12/20/00

Contacts:
Michael D. Duffy, Extension Economics, (515) 294-3000, mduffy@iastate.edu
Del Marks, Extension Communication Systems, (515) 294-9807, delmarks@iastate.edu

Value of Iowa Farmland Gains 4.3 Percent in 2000

AMES, Iowa -- The average value of an acre of farmland in Iowa increased to $1,857 in 2000, reversing a trend that saw small declines in land values during the previous two years, according to an annual survey conducted at Iowa State University.

The increase averaged $76 an acre, or 4.3 percent statewide, said Michael Duffy, ISU Extension economist who directed the survey. The increase followed declines of 1.1 percent in 1999 and 1.9 percent in 1998. Before 1998, land values had increased for 11 consecutive years. This year's increase was reflected in individual increases in all 99 Iowa counties. In the two previous years, only 30 counties had increases in 1998, and 39 counties had increases in 1999 while the state overall average was dropping.

Increases this year ranged from 6.5 percent in Dickinson, Lyon, O'Brien and Osceola counties in northwest Iowa to 1.6 percent in Scott County in east central Iowa. Scott County, which has had the highest land values in the state for several years, topped the $3,000 mark this year with an average value of $3,018. The highest average value ever reported in a county in Iowa was $3,484 in Scott County in 1981.

The 2000 statewide average is $290 below the all-time high of $2,147 per acre reported in 1981. The greatest increases this year were in counties along the western border of the state. East central, central and south central Iowa showed the smallest percentage increases.

Low grade land averaged $1,117 this year and showed a 6.9 percent increase over 1999. As land quality improved, the increase in value declined, with medium grade land averaging $1,701, a 4.4 percent increase, and high grade land averaging $2,324, a 3.3 percent increase.

Duffy said six factors were mentioned by more than 10 percent of the respondents as having positive impacts on land values this year. These factors were government program payments, mentioned by 47 percent, investment demand (23 percent), crop yields (also 23 percent), land supply (19 percent), farm expansion and consolidation (15 percent) and favorable interest rates (13 percent). Three factors were mentioned as negative influences. Poor markets or prices or some variation of those themes were listed by 70 percent of the respondents. Unfavorable interest rates were mentioned by 16 percent and a poor agricultural economy or outlook was mentioned by 10 percent.

Most buyers of Iowa farmland continue to be existing farmers who are increasing their holdings (65 percent), Duffy said, but investors made 29 percent of the purchases this year. This percentage has been consistent for the past three years and is a significant increase over 1997. Sales to investors were highest in southwest Iowa at 43 percent, while sales to existing farmers were highest in northwest Iowa at 71 percent. Twenty-one percent of the survey respondents said there were more sales this year, 51 percent said the number of sales was about the same as last year, and 28 percent said there were fewer sales.

The highest land values by crop reporting district were reported in northwest Iowa where the average was $2,198 per acre, up 6.8 percent from last year. The lowest average value was $992 per acre in south central Iowa, up 1.1 percent from last year.

Iowa State University has conducted an annual survey of land values since 1941. The ISU survey is conducted on Nov. 1 each year and is the only survey that reports land values in all 99 Iowa counties.

More than 1,100 licensed real estate brokers and others knowledgeable about farmland are invited to participate, and this year's survey drew 603 usable responses from all 99 counties. Only the statewide data and the crop reporting district data are calculated directly from the survey results. Data collected in the survey are combined with data from the U.S. Census of Agriculture to determine county figures. The survey has been conducted annually since 1941 and is cosponsored by the Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station and Iowa State University Extension.

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For additional information on the survey and on surveys from prior years, visit the ISU Extension web site at http://www.extension.iastate.edu/

By Crop Reporting District

District

2000 $/acre

$/acre

$ change

% change

Northwest

2,189

2,059

139

6.8%

North Central

2,169

2,073

96

4.6%

Northeast

1,868

1,807

61

3.4%

West Central

1,924

1,837

87

4.7%

Central

2,195

2,128

67

3.1%

East Central

2,190

2,118

72

3.4%

Southwest

1,412

1,346

66

4.9%

South Central

992

981

11

1.1%

Southeast

1,655

1,570

85

5.4%

State Avg.

1,857

1,781

75

4.3%

By County

County:

2000 $/acre

1999 $/acre

$ Change

% Change

Adair

1,198

1,137

52

4.6%

Adams

1,204

1,141

63

5.6%

Allamakee

1,228

1,181

47

4.0%

Appanoose

816

803

14

1.7%

Audubon

1,839

1,730

109

6.3%

Benton

2,151

2,094

57

2.7%

Black Hawk

2,394

2,298

95

4.1%

Boone

2,328

2,277

51

2.2%

Bremer

2,176

2,078

98

4.7%

Buchanan

2,142

2,052

91

4.4%

Buena Vista

2,319

2,203

115

5.2%

Butler

2,106

2,023

83

4.1%

Calhoun

2,354

2,284

70

3.1%

Carroll

2,066

1,952

114

5.8%

Cass

1,620

1,528

92

6.0%

Cedar

2,365

2,308

58

2.5%

Cerro Gordo

2,189

2,099

90

4.3%

Cherokee

2,041

1,918

123

6.4%

Chickasaw

1,744

1,666

78

4.7%

Clarke

956

932

25

2.6%

Clay

2,139

2,033

106

5.2%

Clayton

1,686

1,622

64

4.0%

Clinton

1,961

1,897

64

4.3%

Crawford

1,828

1,718

110

6.4%

Dallas

1,971

1,911

61

3.2%

Davis

1,063

1,027

36

3.5%

Decatur

765

752

13

1.7%

Delaware

2,263

2,181

82

3.8%

Des Moines

1,773

1,695

78

4.6%

Dickinson

1,975

1,855

120

6.5%

Dubuque

2,034

1,960

74

3.8%

Emmet

2,205

2,095

109

5.2%

Fayette

1,966

1,884

82

4.4%

Floyd

2,029

1,932

97

5.0%

Franklin

2,161

2,094

67

3.2%

Fremont

1,554

1,469

85

5.8%

Greene

2,035

1,966

69

3.5%

Grundy

2,395

2,324

71

3.1%

Guthrie

1,665

1,585

81

5.1%

Hamilton

2,467

2,409

58

2.4%

Hancock

2,214

2,139

75

3.5%

Hardin

2,208

2,156

52

2.4%

Harrison

1,700

1,601

98

6.1%

Henry

1,716

1,640

76

4.6%

Howard

1,571

1,500

70

4.7%

Humboldt

2,363

2,303

60

2.6%

Ida

2,056

1,932

124

6.4%

Iowa

1,817

1,743

74

4.3%

Jackson

1,713

1,663

50

3.0%

Jasper

1,892

1,813

80

4.4%

Jefferson

1,327

1,268

59

4.7%

Johnson

2,266

2,175

91

4.2%

Jones

1,854

1,811

43

2.4%

Keokuk

1,620

1,534

86

5.6%

Kossuth

2,282

2,214

68

3.1%

Lee

1,567

1,516

50

3.3%

Linn

2,357

2,303

54

2.4%

Louisa

1,979

1,901

78

4.1%

Lucas

873

858

15

1.7%

Lyon

2,000

1,878

122

6.5%

Madison

1,456

1,394

61

4.4%

Mahaska

1,655

1,581

73

4.6%

Marion

1,581

1,532

49

3.2%

Marshall

2,015

1,952

63

3.3%

Mills

1,698

1,605

93

5.8%

Mitchell

1,987

1,892

95

5.0%

Monona

1,561

1,468

93

6.3%

Monroe

1,081

1,043

38

3.6%

Montgomery

1,443

1,364

79

5.8%

Muscatine

2,142

2,082

60

2.9%

O’Brien

2,468

2,318

150

6.5%

Osceola

2,112

1,983

129

6.5%

Page

1,302

1,231

71

5.8%

Palo Alto

2,133

2,051

82

4.0%

Plymouth

2,146

2,017

129

6.4%

Pocahontas

2,329

2,257

72

3.2%

Polk

2,026

1,973

53

2.7%

Pottawattamie

1,809

1,707

102

6.0%

Poweshiek

1,811

1,735

76

4.4%

Ringgold

918

889

29

3.2%

Sac

2,206

2,084

121

5.8%

Scott

3,018

2,970

48

1.6%

Shelby

1,807

1,702

105

6.2%

Sioux

2,319

2,178

140

6.4%

Story

2,384

2,327

57

2.4%

Tama

1,965

1,903

62

3.3%

Taylor

1,051

1,007

44

4.4%

Union

1,108

1,074

34

3.2%

Van Buren

1,173

1,134

39

3.5%

Wapello

1,251

1,195

56

4.7%

Warren

1,589

1,551

38

2.4%

Washington

2,071

1,960

110

5.6%

Wayne

833

819

14

1.7%

Webster

2,432

2,375

57

2.4%

Winnebago

1,995

1,927

68

3.5%

Winneshiek

1,600

1,534

66

4.3%

Woodbury

1,665

1,565

100

6.4%

Worth

2,005

1,923

82

4.3%

Wright

2,434

2,372

61

2.6%


ml: idaily


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