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Farmers dominate SW Iowa land auction

Jeff Caldwell 10/30/2012 @ 11:01am Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

The price tag may not have been as eye-popping as the recent $21,900/acre sale in Sioux County, Iowa, but a land sale last Friday goes just as far in showing how strong of a position farmers hold in the race to acquire more land.

Just like the sale in Sioux County that netted the highest price for a land auction in Iowa history, it was farmers -- not investors -- driving the bidding at a land auction near Bedford in Taylor County in southwest Iowa on Friday. Around 860 acres of land -- 559 of which are tillable and the rest recreational -- sold for just shy of $3.15 million. The land was sold in 10 tracts, says Joe Bubon of Murray Wise Associates, who conducted the auction, with 7 of those 10 selling individually. The largest parcel sold was 278 acres, which brought $3,687/acre.

"These were very good prices for the location and type of land, and well above recent prices achieved in Taylor County," Bubon says. Prices ranged between $3,251 and $4,487/acre at the sale.

That region's not the flat, black-soil fields that are more common in the northern part of the state. So, land sale prices typically pale in comparison to those netted further north. Still, the prices netted at the southwest Iowa auction show that "farmer operators continue to be the strongest buyers of smaller tracts of land," according to Bubon.

   

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