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Print

Land prices keep going up

August 09, 2011 at 02:49 PM

The State Journal-Register

Farmland prices in Illinois have risen more than 200 percent since 2004, including another 18 percent increase in 2010 to an average $5,800 an acre.

A University of Illinois analysis released on Tuesday said stock-market turmoil and economic uncertainty have contributed to the annual increases, as farmland is considered a more stable investment.

“These economic headwinds likely provide support for U.S. farmland prices,” U of I farm economist Gary Schnitkey said in the report.

“An economic downturn likely would reduce non-farm asset returns compared to farmland returns,” Schnitkey added.

He said there is some concern prices are rising too fast relative to the income from farmland, but that the trend toward rising prices shows no signs of slowing in the short-term.

The report, which was based on U.S. Department of Agriculture data, is the latest to show steady increases in farmland values, including in the Springfield area. A study released last month by the Illinois Society of Professional Farm Managers and Appraisers showed local farmland prices were up 18 percent in 2010.

Prime land in the Springfield averaged $7,500 to $8,500 an acre last year, including a December sale for $10,250 an acre in Sangamon County.

Copyright 2011 The State Journal-Register. Some rights reserved

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