The normal amount of ag land on the market in a given year runs between .5% to 1%, yet that small percentage of land on the market provides the basis for valuing all the other ag land, notes John Hansen of Nebraska Farmer’s Union.

The market value of agricultural land in Nebraska increased 6% over the prior year to an average of $2,895 per acre, according to the final report in the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s 2021 Nebraska Farm Real Estate Market Survey.

The February 2021 survey of nearly 120 expert panel members from across the state provided information and insight regarding the agricultural land market conditions in their areas.

Panel members were selected on the basis of being actively engaged in agricultural land markets as certified agricultural appraisers, professional farm managers, agricultural lenders primarily focused on agricultural land transactions, and other professionals engaged in the Nebraska agricultural land industry by the inherit nature of their positions, the authors said.

Highlights

  • The panel attributed the rise in Nebraska farm real estate values to low interest rates, crop prices, and COVID-19 disaster assistance payments to operators across the state.
  • Operators faced an exceptional amount of risk and uncertainty when navigating production decisions during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Lower interest rates and disaster assistance payments provided stability to an industry facing an economic shutdown and disruptions of supplies.
  • The estimated market value of center pivot irrigated cropland rose by about 8% across the state.
  • Dryland cropland without irrigation potential reported an increase of about 7%.
  • Dryland cropland with irrigation potential showed a renewed interest with higher commodity prices, increasing about 6% through the state.
  • Improvements in grazing and hayland market values range around 3% to 5%.
  • Cropland and grazing land rental rates in 2021 were higher than the prior year. Reports by survey participants indicate higher crop prices are a driving force for the higher rates.
From the University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The authors categorized the various areas of the state (see map.) Lincoln County has characteristics of both the southwest area and the central area, so both areas are detailed below.

For the complete report, see Nebraska Ag Land Values Up 6% for Second-consecutive Year | Center for Agricultural Profitability (unl.edu)

Southwest

Average Value of Farmland by Land Type
Land Type$/Acre% Change
All Land Average1,6003
Center Pivot Irrigated Cropland4,1705
Gravity Irrigated Cropland3,7756
Dryland Cropland (Irrigation Potential)1,6155
Dryland Cropland (No Irrigation Potential)1,4452
Grazing Land (Tillable)9503
Grazing Land (Nontillable)7551
Hayland1,3102
Average Cash Rental Rates by Land Type
Land Type$/Acre% Change
Center Pivot Irrigated Cropland1955
Gravity Irrigated Cropland1706
Dryland Cropland4212
Pasture227
Average Monthly Cash Rental Rates for Pasture
Land Type$/Month
Cow-Calf Pairs51.65

Central

Average Value of Farmland by Land Type
Land Type$/Acre% Change
All Land Average3,3957
Center Pivot Irrigated Cropland7,2659
Gravity Irrigated Cropland6,1806
Dryland Cropland (Irrigation Potential)3,53510
Dryland Cropland (No Irrigation Potential)3,0758
Grazing Land (Tillable)1,9705
Grazing Land (Nontillable)1,4952
Hayland1,9853
Average Cash Rental Rates by Land Type
Land Type$/Acre% Change
Center Pivot Irrigated Cropland2352
Gravity Irrigated Cropland2155
Dryland Cropland988
Pasture376
Average Monthly Cash Rental Rates for Pasture
Land Type$/Month
Cow-Calf Pairs58.95

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