Yass Valley farmland prices are rising

A recent report has suggested there may not be a better time to sell farmland in the Yass Valley than now.

The 2019 Australian Farmland Values report by Rural Bank shows the average price per hectare rose by 33.6 per cent to $9750 in the local government area in 2018.

The value of farmland in the Yass Valley is "on the up and up", says Simon Southwell.

The value of farmland in the Yass Valley is "on the up and up", says Simon Southwell.

It was the second-strongest performing region in south east New South Wales. Eurobodalla led the way with a 57.7 per cent increase to an average $17,905 per hectare.

The third-strongest performing region was Goulburn Mulwaree with a 16.4 per cent increase to an average $9395/ha, followed by Snowy Monaro with a 13 per cent increase to an average $2599/ha.

On the other hand, the value of farmland in Shoalhaven decreased by 24.5 per cent to $14,644/ha; Bega Valley decreased by 18.5 per cent to $5813/ha; Upper Lachlan Shire decreased by 1.2 per cent to $5416/ha; and Queanbeyan-Palerang decreased by 0.9 per cent to $5341/ha.

Overall, the average price per hectare in south east NSW increased by 6.3 per cent to $5835 per hectare.

Ray White Rural Yass principal, Simon Southwell, said the value of rural land was "on the up and up".

"Over the past 10 years, we have seen prices climbing to levels that no one could have predicted and there are a number of factors that have contributed to that," Mr Southwell said.

"Although interest rates have been at a biblical low for many years, it did take a long time for this to filter through to the rural sector, with many in the industry playing catch up and endeavouring to pay down debt from previously difficult times."

Mr Southwell said the region had enjoyed a run of good seasons backed by strong commodity prices prior to the drought.

"Having been involved in selling rural property for more than 30 years, I have seen the good and the bad over large areas [and] out of this the values have always been on the move," he said.

"Twenty-five years ago, if we sold a property for a million dollars it was cause for celebration; now we hold deposits of a million dollars for some property sales.

"Depending on the grade of the property, it is not hard to fetch $4000 per acre for country in the Southern Tablelands.

"We are selling bare 50 acre blocks in the Wallaroo area between Canberra and Yass for $32,000/ac."

The cause, Mr Southwell said, was that "buyer demand is way outstripping the seller side of the equation."

"Clients often ask me, 'When is the best time to sell?'" Mr Southwell said. "The answer should be when you have made the decision to sell. However, with prices like they are at present, sometimes a good opportunity shouldn't be overlooked."

Mr Southwell said it's mostly been farmers wanting to increase their holdings who have been purchasing farmland in the Yass Valley lately.

"The rural lenders are active due to the positive outlook in agriculture," he said.

Mr Southwell said, "just add rain and you will witness an agricultural powerhouse in Australia."