NW Iowa Land Sale Tops $8,000 An Acre

Published on: 16:30PM Jul 31, 2009
Mike Walsten

A recent sale in northwest Iowa sure caught the eye of market observers throughout the state. It occurred July 22 at the auction of 45.5 acres located southwest of Sheldon in Sioux County. The farm carried a CSR (Corn Suitability Rating) of 70.1, which was well above the county CSR average of 64.8. It was gently sloped and square. "I'd say the only draw back was the fact it was mostly square in shape, so mostly 1/4 mile rows," states Rich Vander Werff, whose firm, Vander Werff and Associates, Inc., Sanborn, 712-729-3264, handled the auction. Sale price: $8,100 per acre.

Sure, it was "only " 45.5 acres, so the size of the check was a little more manageable for the buyer. But consider that northwest Iowa is heavily concentrated in livestock and that livestock profits have been few and far between the past few years. That price is impressive.

Selling along with the 45.5 acres were 65.7 acres with 60.8 acres tillable. That tract carried a CSR of 70.6. But it brought "only" $6,950 an acre. "Two borders followed the center of a fairly deep grass waterway so there are many point rows and the farm was quite irregularly shaped. There were grassy strips next to the waterway. These weren't enrolled in CRP. The previous owner just baled these," Vander Werff says.

These are impressive sales. It shows there is strong demand for quality ground. That's not always the case for poor quality ground. We've seen several "no sales" lately and in each case that we've checked, the farm involved was poor quality.

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