Land prices have increased by an average of eight percent according to the latest Agricultural Land Price analysis conducted by the Irish Farmers Journal. The average price of land in Longford and throughout the western region has increased from €6,847/ac to €7,599/ac, while the amount of land offered for sale during the first six months of 2012 was up 65 percent when compared to the same period last year. The analysis also indicated that the average price paid for land during the first six months of this year was €10,004/ac, a figure that has surpassed the €10,000/acre mark for the first time in three years.
There was a number of factors which helped to increase the level of activity in the land market including favourable weather conditions and good commodity prices, however local auctioneer, Jonathan Quinn has warned that the adverse weather conditions of this summer, may impact on land sales in the last quarter of this year.
“There hasn’t been a huge amount of sales here in Longford over the past few months but we do have some land coming onto the market in the coming weeks,” he explained. “There will be seven acres along the by-pass up for sale in a couple of weeks time, but it has to be said that it will be interesting to see how things go with land sales because of the poor summer.”
Mr Quinn went on to say that it was predominately farmers who were buying land presently and highlighted that while there was still a demand for one-off housing, the low supply was leading to frustration in the local housing market. “Sales are lower now with houses that are in receivership,” he added. “One- off housing is holding its own, but the problem there is, that, there is an increased demand but not a lot of that type of housing available.”
Nationally, land supply amounted to 34,000 acres from January to June 2012, up by almost 13,500 acres on the same period last year or 65 percent. Munster recorded the highest level – 14,403 acres - while Leinster followed closely behind at 12,870 acres; Connacht 4,398 acres and Ulster 2,376 acres. 610 acres were offered for sale in Co Longford between January and June of this year.