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Market for tillable land remains strong, resisting coronavirus pressures

The market for farmland has remained steadfast throughout the Coronavirus-driven economic turmoil, as demonstrated by the recent $3.07 million auction of 320 acres in Delaware County, Indiana, near Muncie, according to R.D. Schrader, president of Schrader Real Estate and Auction Company.

“Farmland remains a rare haven from the economic chaos roiling so many assets. While the recent volume of land sold has been lower compared to other periods, the demand has remained very strong and the land has sold at excellent prices,” said Schrader.

In the Delaware County auction, almost 60 percent of the land -- 191.5 acres -- sold to a farmer for $1.77 million, or $9,243 per acre. Another 109 acres went to another farmer for $950,000, or $8,716 per acre.

Also selling were a home on 7.5 acres, for $260,000 and 12 acres of rolling wooded land for $5,583 per acre.

“There was very competitive bidding for all of the tracts, but the results on the tillable land are especially noteworthy when you consider the persistence of low commodity prices and the drag the pandemic has placed on our economy. They are also consistent with what we have seen in other auctions through the pandemic period. Based on this, I believe that sellers can take their land to auction with confidence,” said Schrader. “Land buyers think long term, and they know that the opportunity to purchase a given piece of land may not come again.”

The auction attracted 38 registered bidders, including live and online bidders. Approximately 150 attended the auction, respecting state social distancing guidelines.

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