Strong, Stable Rural Land Market

SW Wisconsin Land Market Update

A trend has emerged in the rural land market of southwestern Wisconsin. Since 2014, we’ve seen a strong showing in the first half of the year, then a slower third quarter followed by a rebound during the fourth quarter. That’s precisely what the numbers show for 2016 as well.

2016 Rural Land Market Review

1st Quarter- 2296 acres sold in 32 transactions for an average of $3,325/acre

2nd Quarter- 2481 acres sold in 42 transactions for an average of $3,484/acre

3rd Quarter- 1763 acres sold in 26 transactions for an average of $3,181/acre

4th Quarter- 2767 acres sold in 39 transactions for an average of $3,472/acre

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Current Market Characteristics

  • Low Inventory Continues

This sounds like a looping track, but low inventory persists. This has been the case since around October of 2015. Nice properties 40-150 acres are selling quickly. The average parcel size that sold during fourth quarter was 71 acres. This is a great time for landowners to put properties on the market.

  • Buyers Waiting in The Wings

Land buyers continue watching and waiting; but immediately jump in the game when a fairly priced property comes on the market.

  • Prices rebound

Rural land prices rebounded from third quarter’s average of $3,181/acre to finish the year at $3,472/acre. This 4th quarter 2016 average price/acre when compared to $3,308 in the 4th quarter of 2015, was an increase of 10.8%.

4th Quarter 2015 vs. 4th Quarter 2016

Here’s a look at land sales by county in SW Wisconsin:

Grant County

4 tracts of land sold during the 4th quarter 2016 (involving 583 acres) compared to 8 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year (involving 516 acres). The average price per acre was $3759 compared to $3026 a year ago; an increase of 24%.

Iowa County

7 tracts of land sold during the 4th quarter 2016 (involving 652 acres) compared to 6 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year (involving 399 acres). The average price per acre was $3686 compared to $3855 a year ago; a decrease of 4%.

Lafayette County

Zero land sales were reported during the 4th quarter 2016 compared to 2 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year (involving 62 acres). The average price per acre (carried over from third quarter) remains at $4688 compared to $3475 a year ago; an increase of 35%.

Sauk County

10 tracts of land sold during the 4th quarter 2016 (involving 479 acres) compared to 8 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year (involving 696 acres). The average price per acre was $3444 compared to $3570 a year ago; a decrease of 3.5%.

Vernon County

7 tracts of land sold during the 4th quarter 2016 (involving 320 acres) compared to 8 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year (involving 721 acres). The average price per acre was $3219 compared to $2745 a year ago; an increase of 17%.

Crawford County

5 tracts of land sold during the 4th quarter 2016 (involving 354 acres) compared to 5 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year (involving 310 acres). The average price per acre was $2671 compared to $2677 a year ago; a negligible decrease of 0.2%.

Richland County

6 tracts of land sold during the 4th quarter 2016 (involving 379 acres) compared to 5 sales during the 4th quarter of the previous year. The average price per acre was $2834 compared to $2582 a year ago; an increase of 10%.

Averages Are Just Guidelines

Buyers and sellers need to be aware that average sale prices are only a general guideline. An on-site property evaluation by an experienced land agent is needed to give you an accurate picture of what a property is worth in the current market. To learn more about the rural land market in Southwest Wisconsin, begin your search here: Southwest-Wisconsin-Real-Estate.com

For Landowners

If you would like a more detailed land market report for your area (free)*, visit www.LandMarketReport.com for instructions on how to order.

*SW Wisconsin includes Grant County, Lafayette County, Iowa County, Sauk County, Richland County, Crawford County, & Vernon County. All data was sourced from the SCWMLS & WiREx. Because this article was intended to review the rural land market, properties smaller than 20 acres, residential, and commercial land sales were not included.

2 responses to this post.

  1. […] Read more from Jay Frazier, Rural Property Pro […]

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  2. I found your data very interesting and useful to pricing our farm in Vernon County. I think it is great data that you put together because none of the real estate agents we talked to had any data on real prices of sold land properties. In my experience in selling our home the real data of properties sold is the only way to price accurately for the market.

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