SW Wisconsin Land Market Update

Much of the southwestern Wisconsin rural land market took a breather during the 3rd quarter 2018 after a record-setting 2nd quarter. 3rd quarter saw half the transactions close as 2nd quarter and a little over a third the number of acres. This pause in the rural land market is typical during the summer months.

The average price for the region was $3,552/acre during the 3rd quarter 2018, up 2% over the same quarter a year ago. All but one county saw a rise in the average price per acre compared to prices a year ago.

Current Market Characteristics

• Tight Farm Economy Raises Concerns
With some ag producers facing bleak market conditions, many farmers are less likely to consider purchasing farmland than they were in the first half of the year.

• Persistent Flooding Affects Buyer Activity
Hot and humid weather started in late May and continued for most of the summer accompanied by record rainfall. Much of southwestern Wisconsin experienced flooding during August and September. Many bridges and roadways were damaged making it more difficult and, in a few cases, impossible for interested buyers to get to prospective properties.

• Sellers’ Market Shows Signs of Leveling Off
Although the rural land market showed favor to sellers the last couple of years, indicators point toward a more balanced market. Sellers trying above-market list prices often see their property languish on the market longer than they would like even though the average price-per-acre is inching upward in most areas.
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3rd Quarter 2017 vs. 3rd Quarter 2018

Here’s a look at land sales by county in SW Wisconsin:

Grant County
0 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 compared to 3 sales during the 3rd quarter of the previous year (involving 180 acres). The average price per acre was $4,570 (carried over from 2nd quarter) compared to $3,362 a year ago; an increase of 36%. This large price increase is mainly due to a low average price in 2017 and a record high price in 2018.

Iowa County
6 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 (involving 269 acres) compared to 2 sales during the 3rd quarter of the previous year (involving 170 acres). The average price per acre was $3,969 compared to $2,658 a year ago; an increase of 49%. This large price increase is mainly due to a low average price in 2017 and a record high price in 2018.

Lafayette County
0 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 compared to 0 sales reported during the 3rd quarter of the previous year. Year over year 2nd quarter avg price per acre was $5,453 in 2018 vs. $5,739 in 2017.

Sauk County
5 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 (involving 398 acres) compared to 5 sales during the 3rd quarter of the previous year (involving 369 acres). The average price per acre was $3,830 compared to $3,678 a year ago; an increase of 4%.

Vernon County
4 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 (involving 166 acres) compared to 6 sales during the 3rd quarter of the previous year (involving 718 acres). The average price per acre was $3,562 compared to $3,039 a year ago; an increase of 17%.

Crawford County
5 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 (involving 188 acres) compared to 8 sales during the 3rd quarter of the previous year (involving 644 acres). The average price per acre was $2,967 compared to $2,433 a year ago; an increase of 22%.

Richland County
5 tracts of land sold during the 3rd quarter 2018 (involving 317 acres) compared to 2 sales during the 3rd quarter of the previous year. The average price per acre was $3,354 compared to $2,625 a year ago; an increase of 27%.

For Landowners & Prospective Buyers

If you would like a more detailed land market report for your area (free)*, visit www.LandMarketReport.com for instructions on how to order.

Averages are just guidelines
Buyers and sellers need to be aware that average sale prices are only a general guideline. An on-site property evaluation by an experienced land agent is needed to give you an accurate picture of what a property is worth in the current market. To learn more about the rural land market in Southwest Wisconsin, begin your search here: RuralPropertyPro.com

*Free Land Market Reports are available for these SW Wisconsin Counties: Grant, Lafayette, Iowa, Sauk, Richland, Crawford, & Vernon

*SW Wisconsin includes Grant County, Lafayette County, Iowa County, Sauk County, Richland County, Crawford County, & Vernon County. All data was sourced from the SCWMLS & WiREx. Because this article was intended to review the rural land market, properties smaller than 20 acres, residential, and commercial land sales were not included.

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