Demand was strong between farmers and investors at a recent auction of 196 tillable acres of farmland south of Newman, Illinois. The ground was offered in two tracts of 110 and 86 acres each. The combined farm of 196 acres carried a soil Productivity Index of 137.6 with 147 the maximum, according to Illinois Bulletin 811. The land eventually sold for $10,668 per acre.
The April 14 auction, managed by Joe Bubon of Murray Wise Associates, Champaign, Ill., drew a crowd of more than 50 with 22 registered bidders. "This was a remarkable auction in several respects, starting with the fact that we had about a dozen bidders competing very actively for the individual tracts of 110 and 86 acres, and for the combination of all 196 acres. Things went back and forth for quite a while. Local farmers were seeking to add the land to their existing operations, and investors were seeking it as well," says Bubon.
"In the end, it was an investor buying both land tracts. But the runners-up were farmers bidding on the individual pieces," said Bubon. He said the price was strong compared with recent land sales. "The farmland market may not be what it was a year ago, but it's still very high by historical standards," notes Bubon.
A third tract featuring a country home and farmstead with a machine shed and grain bins totalling 17,000 bu. also sold at the auction. That tract brought $102,000.
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