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Your Precious Land

RSS By: Mike Walsten, Pro Farmer

Mike Walsten has covered major business trends in agriculture for more than 40 years.

Survey: Iowa Cash Rents Rise 18% in 2012

May 10, 2012

Mike Walsten

Now we have numbers to put on what everyone has been talking about -- the state average cash rent in the state of Iowa rose $38 an acre, 18%, in 2012, according to an annual survey conducted by Iowa State University (ISU). The survey found the state average cash rent rose to $252 an acre. "This is the largest one-year increase since the statewide survey was started in 1994," states Willaim Edwards, ISU extension economist, who directs the annual survey. The second-largest increase was recorded in 2011 when the survey found a $30-per-acre increase.

"Average rents were higher in all nine crop reporting districts, with increases ranging from $57 per acre in north central Iowa to $16 per acre in south central Iowa." states Edwards. The $57-per-acre increase in the north central district represents a 26% increase. The $16-per-acre increase in the south central district represents a 9% increase.

High-quality land showed the largest increase in rents. Estimated rents for land in the high-third of each county increased by an average of 20%. but estimated rents on low-third quality row-crop land increased by only 15%. "In many counties, respondents indicated that typical rents were $400 to $500 per acre or more for the higher quality land," Edwards observes.

More than 1,400 responded to the survey of which 37% were farmers, 28% landowners, 16% professional farm managers, 16% lenders and 3% other professionals.

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