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Farmland values rise due to increasing investor interest

Farmland values rose slightly in the first quarter of 2012 and are expected to increase further during the year.

(Source: Knight Frank, 03 Apr 2012)

English farmland values increased in the first three months of 2012, following drops of just 1% in each of the final two quarters of last year.

“We predicted that the slight drop in the value of land in the second half of 2011 was not the start of a more significant trend. The upturn in farmland values so far this year bears this out and we expect further growth of about 6% during the rest of the year,” says Andrew Shirley, Head of Rural Research at Knight Frank. “Despite the ongoing economic uncertainty farmland is still considered a solid, tangible “safe-haven” investment,” adds Andrew.

Tom Raynham of Knight Frank’s Farm Sales team says he has noticed an upturn in the number of investors attracted to farmland as an asset class. “So far we haven’t seen any activity from institutional investors, but specialist funds and private and corporate investors are showing a lot more interest. A number have retained us to find suitable investments for them.”

As ever, the biggest problem is satisfying the demand for farmland, explains Tom. “So far this year there has been very little increase in the availability of quality land. This imbalance will help to ensure farmland values remain firm.”

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