RICS survey reveals record land prices

Land prices have risen to record levels, says the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

According to its survey of rural members for the first half of the year, average bare land price reached £7389/ha (£2990/acre), a rise of almost 5%.

Pastureland was worth £7139/ha (£2889/acre) and arable £7639/ha (£3091/acre).

Data from actual transactions reported to RICS showed whole-farm values had also risen to an all-time high, said economist Milan Khatri.

On a four-quarter moving average basis, farms were making £9856/ha (£3989/acre), he added.

Mr Khatri said sales activity had also picked up significantly as single farm payment issues were resolved and was at a four-year high.

Despite this, demand from commercial farmers and residential buyers was still outstripping supply as the housing market and economy performed strongly.

Increasing demand from UK farmers looking to expand and growing interest from Irish farmers was also helping to boost the market, he added.

Agents were predicting this buoyant situation was likely to continue.