Farm Progress

Its new name, Big Iron Realty, will launch at Husker Harvest Days.

August 1, 2017

3 Min Read
NEW NAME, SAME IDENTITY: Ron Stock (center) takes bids at a benefit auction for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital at Husker Harvest Days in 2011.

Ron and Mark Stock, co-owners at Stock Realty & Auction Co., started the business in 1984 selling pots and pans. "We got our first big break in the auction business because we helped an 85-year-old woman find a new home for her deceased brother's dog," says Ron Stock. "We took in the dog, bought him a doghouse and took good care of him for about seven more years. It made it easy to be positive when every morning you walked outside and the dog that helped you get your first big land and equipment auction is wagging his tail, jumping on you, and licking your face."

Stock Realty & Auction has sold land and equipment across the Corn Belt for over 30 years. "We were the very first auction company to bring live internet bidding directly out to the traditional farm auctions," Stock says. "We used to drag 1,000 feet of telephone cable through the mud so we could have a dial-up internet hookup out in the auction ring. We recognized early on that the internet was going to be the future."

After 10 years of experimenting with and perfecting internet auction software, the Stock Brothers launched in 2009. "We had plans on launching Big Iron in 2004, but the software build was slow to develop," Stock says "And it was a good thing, because in 2004 there were only 20% of farmers online, and just five years later there were 80% of farmers with online capabilities."

Big Iron has become one of the largest online unreserved agricultural equipment auctions in the world. A seller can sell one piece of machinery or their total farm machinery retirement sale directly from their farm.

Making process easier for all
There is no freighting the machinery. Big Iron collects money from the buyer and guarantees payment to the seller. Big Iron helps the buyer take delivery. A Big Iron sales representative takes all the pictures and the videos, and writes the descriptions needed for a sale.

"What I am most proud of is how we can help someone who feels helpless," Stock says. "Maybe their husband or dad has left them with all this machinery and they feel helpless to start it, move it — much less sell it. We make is easy for them and get them the most money possible for their machinery right from their farm. We solve their problem."

Big Iron has been an online auction solution for thousands of sellers across the U.S. and for buyers world-wide. "It all happens one seller at a time," says Stock. "We treat every auction like it is our only sale. Spending money marketing is the key to it. When you sell your tractor on Big Iron, we spend a lot of money making sure 150,000 tractor buyers know your specific tractor is for sale. It is like spending money on fertilizer. You have to spend money on marketing to get the best yield."

"Our land-selling customers have been asking for us to market their land the same way we market their machinery" Stock adds. "So Big Iron Realty will be launched in conjunction with 2017 Husker Harvest Days."

"We have noticed that when we market our current land listings to our Big Iron buyers we are getting a lot more bids," Stock says. "And as the land market tightens up and land prices start to slip, getting the marketing right is going to be more important today than it has been in the past decade."

Stock Realty & Auction Co.'s real estate sales force will remain the same and become the Big Iron Realty sales force.

The Stock brothers are planning to add new agents in certain geographical areas where they don't have representation.

If you are thinking of selling your farm, you can still get a Stock brother or agent to show up at your farm, but his yellow shirt will now say Big Iron Realty.

Source: Big Iron


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