During July and August, meetings to provide information on leasing farmland will be held throughout Iowa at various locations. These leasing meetings are an annual event provided by Iowa State University Extension. The purpose is to share ideas and educational resources related to Iowa farmland ownership and tenancy with landowners, tenant operators and others involved in farming and agriculture.
Information will be provided in multiple ways on these topics through the summer. You can attend meetings in your area in-person or via virtual meetings online.
ISU Extension farm management specialists will be presenting the information and facilitating the discussion. Topics to be discussed include land values and cash rent trends, cost of production, and methods landlords and tenants can use for determining a fair rental rate. Also, the latest legal updates that impact farm leases and land ownership will be discussed. Additional topics will vary by location.
Start 2021 rent negotiation now
“We will also discuss the importance of communication between landlords and tenants,” says Steve Johnson, ISU Extension farm management specialist. “With the sharp decline in crop prices the past several years and now with the continuing economic problems created by the COVID-19 pandemic, profit margins are low and, in some cases, nonexistent for farmers who are paying the higher cash rental rates. There are reasons to start cash rent negotiations early, looking ahead to 2021.”
In Iowa, state law specifies that landlords and tenants must serve proper notice by Sept. 1 if they want to terminate their current lease. Otherwise, the terms of the 2020 lease will continue for 2021. If a notice of termination isn’t served by one party to the other party by this deadline, the tenant and landlord can still agree to terminate or change the terms of the lease after Sept. 1 if they choose to do so. But if they can’t reach an agreement, then the current lease will continue.
Attend meeting near you
To find out when and where an ISU farmland leasing meeting will be held in your area during July and August, visit the farmland leasing web page on the ISU Ag Decision Maker website. Click on your county on the map of Iowa.
Preregistration is required to allow sites to provide appropriate physical distancing. Meeting fees to attend vary by location. The list of meetings is updated as dates and locations are finalized.
For online leasing resources and information about cropland lease arrangements, check out the files on the Ag Decision Maker leasing web page. “The Ag Decision Maker leasing section provides useful materials for negotiating leases, information on various types of leases, written lease forms, termination forms and newly updated decision tools,” Johnson says.