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Land Pros See 33% Jump In Iowa Farmland Values

Published on: 09:02AM May 13, 2011

Mike Walsten

Land professionals at this year's Soil Management and Land Valuation Conference sponsored by Iowa State University (ISU) project an average acre of Iowa cropland will be $6,721 per acre by the end of the year. For perspective, the annual ISU farmland survey pegged the average value of an acre of Iowa farmland at $5,064 an acre as of November 1, 2010. Therefore, that $6,721 price, if achieved, would represent a 33% jump in value. The ISU survey has not seen an annual increase that great since the mid-1970s when values rose by 30% or more three consecutive years -- 1973, 1974 and 1975.

Attendees as the conference (usually held in May) are routinely asked their price projections for land values by year end. Last year's attendee projection was within 3% of the final ISU survey figure.

In addition, attendees were asked their price projection for the end of 2012. The group turned in an average of $7,079 per acre. If achieved that would amount to a 5% gain, which signals the pros expect the currently red-hot market will cool in 2012.

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