COLUMBIA, Mo. — All classes of Missouri land values grew steadily in the past year, according to the University of Missouri Extension’s annual survey of farmers, rural appraisers and ag lenders.
Ray Massey, MU Extension agricultural economics professor, heads the survey efforts. He said low-interest rates and non-farm recreational purchases pushed values upward in 2020. A couple of other factors brought new investors to the table, according to an Extension news release.
Buyers of farmland near metropolitan areas said expansion of broadband internet made these properties more attractive.COVID-19 also nudged some city dwellers to buy property in rural areas. Massey said this likely is a short-term phenomenon and should not factor into long-term land values in these areas.
Respondents gave estimates of land values as of July 2020 for three classes of cropland and pasture (good, average and poor), irrigated cropland, timberland and hunting/recreational land. This year’s respondents reported the statewide average value of good non-irrigated cropland at $5,555 per acre, $134 or 2% above the 2019 value.
The average statewide value for irrigated cropland came in at $6,335, up $186 from the year before.
The greatest increases in average values were in pastureland and timber/hunting/recreation land. However, values varied greatly throughout the state, Massey said.
“This underscores the need to use caution when valuing any one parcel of land or using individual districts,” he said.
Most respondents indicated 60% of farmland buyers intend to farm the land themselves and 25% plan to rent the land to others. The remaining 12% bought the land for non-farming purposes.