Farm land in England breaks the £8,000 an acre barrier

Taylor Scott International News

Even the impending general election in the UK has failed to pull back the farmland market in England, with prices continuing to rise in the first quarter of the year. The farmland market in England has gained further ground this year with the average price of bare agricultural land rising by almost 2% between January and March to break the £8,000 an acre barrier for the first time. An acre is now worth £8,059, according to the Knight Frank Farmland Index. Values have risen by 10% over the past 12 months and by 192% over the past 10 years. This compares with 10 year capital growth of 138% for the prime central London residential market, 40% for the FTSE 100, despite the index hitting its own record high earlier this year, and 250% for gold. An imminent General Election, particularly one with so many possible outcomes, might have been expected to cause the market to pause for breath, but it appears the appeal of farmland is overriding the uncertainty, according to Andrew Shirley, head of rural research. But he pointed out that the market continues to separate into two clear sub-markets, each with their own distinct performance trends. Large blocks, ideally over 1,000 acres, of arable land are being eagerly sought after by investors and demand is so strong that prices upwards of £12,000 an acre are regularly being paid and even £15,000 an acre has been achieved on a number of occasions. Although East Anglia has traditionally been the main source of investment farmland, buyers are now looking across the country and exceptionally strong results have also been recorded in counties such as Hampshire. Continue reading →

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