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Successful Land Sale: Eastern Iowa Farm Brings $7,900

Poweshiek County cropland sells for $7,900 per acre.

A successful real estate sale depends mostly on location, location, location. You've heard it before, and you'll hear it again. That's just as true for farmland sales as it is for residential real estate, and it was proven June 15 at the sale of 87 acres of farmland in Poweshiek County, Iowa.

Poweshiek County Iowa
The farm is 1.5 miles west of Victor, just south of a paved road. There are 85.5 acres of farmland, featuring mostly Vesser and Judson soils, with an overall Corn Suitability Rating 2 of 77.3 (based on a 5 to 100 scale). The land is level to gently sloping with both tile and natural drainage. The farm is leased for 2016, and the buyer receives one half of the rental income.

The sale brought $687,300, or $7,900 per acre. "That's right where it needed to be," says Chris Smith, sales associate for Hertz Real Estate Services, which had the auction. "It brought $105 per CSR point, which is just about right." As for location? The buyer was the adjacent farmer, while runner-up bidder was the tenant of the farm, which was owned by two sisters who decided it was a good time to sell. "We had good bidding, and at the end of the day, both parties were happy," Smith says. 

In 2015, farmland in Poweshiek County averaged $7,581 per acre, with cash rent rates averaging $241 per acre, according to Iowa State University. The 10-year average corn yield in the county is 175 bushels per acre, while soybeans averages 53 bushels per acre, according to data from the university. For more information, log onto

Best of the Rest

Illinois, Fulton County: 160 acres 2 miles northeast of Lewiston sold June 10. The tract has 130.25 acres of tillable land, with Fayette, Clarksdale, and Keomah silt loam soils and a Crop Productivity Index rating of 118.8 (on a scale of 61 to 147). The balance is woods with pond, plus a lot with two machine sheds. The buyer gets $175 per acre credit for cash rent (in lieu of cash rent income). Possession of the property occurs after the 2016 crop year. The land sold for $1.024 million ($6,400 per acre). Gorsuch-Hensley Real Estate and Auction had the sale.

Kansas, Labette County: Two tracts totaling 240 acres were up for auction June 14. Just one tract sold: 80 acres, a few miles west of Oswego. The tract has 76 acres in cultivation planted to wheat. The buyer gets 40% of the soybean crop doubled into wheat after harvest. The tract sold for $208,000 ($2,600 per acre). Tract 2 was 160 acres with 135 acres in cultivation; the buyer was to get 40% of the corn crop. Chesnutt and Chesnutt had the sale.

Oklahoma, Garfield County: A quarter section a half mile south of Lahoma sold June 14. The tract has 115 cropland acres, with the balance in pasture, ponds, and some woods. Soil types are mostly Grant and Pond Creek silt loam. Buyer gets possession after the 2016 wheat harvest. The property sold for $290,000 ($1,813 per acre). Lippard Auctioneers had the sale.

South Dakota, Clay County: 240 acres in two tracts northwest of Vermillion sold June 15. Tract 1, 80 acres, has 71.25 tillable acres that are mostly level. There are two homes, two sheds, and grain storage. It sold for $520,000 ($6,500 per acre). Tract 2, 160 acres, is all tillable and mostly level featuring Luton silty clay soils. It sold for $920,000 ($5,750 per acre). Both selling prices were better than expected, says auctioneer Mike Girard, of Girard Auction.

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