A mid-February online survey shows that 53% of farmers expect land prices to drop 5 to 20% by the end of 2009 compared to 2008 levels. The survey was conducted Feb. 9-16 and garnered 693 replies.
About 12% of those who participated say they expect prices to drop by more than 20% before the end of the year. Just over 24% said they expect no change in land values, while a small but optimistic segment – 7.5% - said they expected land prices to be 5 to 10% higher by the end of the year.
Anonymous comments added flavor to the poll, and the sentiments went both ways. "Down, down, down, down," lamented one respondent. "Are they making farmland?" posited another.
"With grain prices and the financial meltdown in a chaotic mode you would have to be in an ignorant bubble to think prices for dirt are going to be anything but lower at the end of 09!!," said one respondent. "I look for a downward trend, with input prices continuing to stay high and grain prices not looking to improve without a huge weather problem this year in the U.S." said another.