South East farm prices fell during the past year

The price per acre in the south east fell by an average of 14.5 per cent in 2014, according to Ganley Waters.

The price per acre in the south east fell by an average of 14.5 per cent in 2014, according to Ganley Waters.

While almost 17,000 acres changed hands last year, ’significant’ falls in acreage prices were recorded in the South East during 2014.

These were among a host of findings revealed by the Sherry FitzGerald Group and Ganly Waters last week in their annual reports which assessed the price of farms and farmlands respectively.

According to the Ganly Waters report, the price per acre in Waterford, Kilkenny, Wexford and Carlow fell 14.5 per cent to an average of €10,226. ”

“However, that’s still 40 per cent above the low of €7,287 seen in the region in 2010,” as pointed out by Robert Ganly, Managing Director of Ganly Waters.

The Ganly Waters report states: “There were 33 sales in this region and six further sales were completed but the prices were not disclosed.

“Of those disclosed the prices averaged €10,226 per acre across some 1,600 acres – a 14.5 per cent decrease on 2013’s average of €11,959…

“In this region, smaller parcels of 20 to 49 acres fetched the strongest prices – €12,945 on average in 2014 compared to €12,754 in 2013…there were 21 sales in this category, while Ganly Walters sold Georgestown House, Kill, County Waterford on (circa) 47 acres.”

In the 50 to 99 acre bracket, eight farm properties in the region sold at an average of €8,561, down from €11,062 per acre in 2013, while the average price in the 100 to 199 acre bracket was €9,012 last year, a decrease from €11,714 as recorded two years ago.

Graphic: Ganley Waters.

Graphic: Ganley Waters.

For its part, the Sherry FitzGerald Group noted that “the average value of all farmland in Ireland rose by 0.2 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2014; this brings the growth in the year to three per cent”.

The highest growth rate in the quarter and indeed, the year itself was experienced in the Midlands region which grew 1.6 per cent between October and December, which brought bringing growth over the course of the year to 6.5 per cent.

“Furthermore, farmland values grew consistently throughout 2014 in the South-West and the Mid-East regions,” according to a Sherry FitzGerald statement which oddly made no reference to the South East.
Said David Ashmore, Sherry FitzGerald’s Head of Country Homes, Farms & Estates: “Pricing between residential and non-residential farms is widening as the residential market improves and significant price differences are emerging between ‘prospect’ agricultural land and ‘pure’ agricultural land with increases of between 15 and 100 per cent witnessed across the country for this product over the last 12 months, against three per cent for pure agricultural land. The abolishment of quotas should make 2015 an interesting year for the dairying sector.”

The Ganley report states that over €177 million “is estimated to have been paid for farm properties in 2014 where more than 16,800 acres changed hands”.

The average national price paid for farmland last year came in at €10,526 per acre – an increase of 0.01 per cent from the 2013 average of €10,401.

Last year’s average was 20 per cent “above the trough of €8,776 per acre recorded in 2010, but it is still as much as 38.4 per cent below the peak price of €17,081 per acre recorded in 2008″.

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