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Land market momentum continues

Land Sales: Plenty of aggressive buyers out there continue to drive demand for Kansas farmland.

Jennifer M. Latzke

February 9, 2023

2 Min Read
Deer in woods
LAND VALUES: Aggressive land buyers continue to drive the demand for rural farmland. ricardoreitmeyer/Getty images

The land market momentum that began in late 2021 accelerated into 2022 and was driven by competition for high quality cropland. It resulted in both record sales and overall increases in land values across the country, according to Farmers National Co.

Strong demand across the country brought opportunities to landowners interested in capitalizing on the current land market, Farmers National says. Aggressive land buyers continue to drive competition through public/online auction methods, giving a true market value in those specific areas.  

In most cases, landowners selling property experienced values never before seen for their farmland. The final results at these auctions set records in several states and have increased year-to-year values between 20% and 34% across Corn Belt states, according to the most recent report from the Kansas City Federal Reserve.

It’s a similar story in Kansas on its own, as shown by the Jan. 4 auction of 640 acres of grassland in Sheridan County, which sold for $896,000.

The property was offered in a single tract, which included live water through the center of this section and a good water well on the eastern half of the section. The seller was James J. Schamberger. Farm & Ranch Realty Inc. Colby, Kan., handled the sale.

SHERIDAN COUNTY

In a second Sheridan County transaction, about 340 acres of cropland and grass was sold at auction Jan. 17. Tract 1 was 328 acres of crop and native grass pasture with a good windmill, and it sold for $1,875 per acre. Tract 2 was about 12 acres and included a farmstead, and it sold for $26,000. The sellers were Steve and Laura Fellhoelter. Farm & Ranch Realty Inc. handled the sale.

THOMAS COUNTY

About 640 acres of Thomas County land south of Brewster, Kan., was sold in three tracts at auction Jan. 12. Tract 1 and Tract 2 were each 160 acres of cropland, each planted to wheat, and each sold for $3,150 per acre. Tract 3 was 140 acres of cropland and 170 acres of grass pasture, and it sold for $2,300 per acre. The seller was the Jean Anne Kersten Living Trust. Farm & Ranch Realty Inc. handled the sale.

STAFFORD COUNTY

About 232 acres of Stafford County land was sold at auction Dec. 19. The land included 181 acres of dry cropland and 41 acres of pasture. It included a pond and a cased water well with electricity, as well as abundant trees and shrubs for the hunting enthusiast. The property sold for $1,400 per acre. The sellers were the Miller family. Carr Auction and Real Estate, Larned, Kan., handled the sale.

About the Author(s)

Jennifer M. Latzke

Editor, Kansas Farmer

Through all her travels, Jennifer M. Latzke knows that there is no place like Kansas.

Jennifer grew up on her family’s multigenerational registered Angus seedstock ranch and diversified farm just north of Woodbine, Kan., about 30 minutes south of Junction City on the edge of the Kansas Flint Hills. Rock Springs Ranch State 4-H Center was in her family’s backyard.

While at Kansas State University, Jennifer was a member of the Sigma Kappa Sorority and a national officer for the Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. She graduated in May 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural communications and a minor in animal science. In August 2000 Jennifer started her 20-year agricultural writing career in Dodge City, Kan., on the far southwest corner of the state.

She’s traveled across the U.S. writing on wheat, sorghum, corn, cotton, dairy and beef stories as well as breaking news and policy at the local, state and national levels. Latzke has traveled across Mexico and South America with the U.S. Wheat Associates and toured Vietnam as a member of KARL Class X. She’s traveled to Argentina as one of 10 IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism. And she was part of a delegation of AAEA: The Ag Communicators Network members invited to Cuba.

Jennifer’s an award-winning writer, columnist, and podcaster, recognized by the Kansas Professional Communicators, Kansas Press Association, the National Federation of Presswomen, Livestock Publications Council, and AAEA. In 2019, Jennifer reached the pinnacle of achievements, earning the title of “Writer of Merit” from AAEA.

Trips and accolades are lovely, but Jennifer says she is happiest on the road talking to farmers and ranchers and gathering stories and photos to share with readers.

“It’s an honor and a great responsibility to be able to tell someone’s story and bring them recognition for their work on the land,” Jennifer says. “But my role is also evolving to help our more urban neighbors understand the issues our Kansas farmers face in bringing the food and fiber to their store shelves.”

She spends her time gardening, crafting, watching K-State football, and cheering on her nephews and niece in their 4-H projects. She can be found on Twitter at @Latzke.

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