Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Monday 11 December 2017

39 transactions hit average of ?10k/ac

NORTH LEINSTER

Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

The survey covers 39 land sales in North Leinster, which includes the counties of Dublin, Louth, Meath, Westmeath, Longford and Offaly. In these counties, more than 2,480ac of land changed hands for an accumulated total of €24,974,850, giving an average of price of €10,070/ac.

The region boasted the biggest land sale in the country when Dowth Hall, on 420ac near Drogheda but in the Royal County of Meath, sold for €5m. Other notable sales included the sale of the 274ac St Edmundsbury Hospital farm at Lucan, Co Dublin, for €4.3m.

The highest per-acre price was paid for 19ac at Killsallaghan, Co Dublin, which was sold by Ganly Walters for €25,000/ac, while a 410ac mixed Farm at Ginnets Park, near Trim, Co Meath, and a 16ac parcel at Brannockstown, Trim, both sold for €5,000/ac. The lowest price was paid for forestry land near Edgeworthstown in Longford which sold for €2,200/ac.

Of the 39 properties sold in this region, only one property made less than €5,000/ac, five properties made between €5,000 and €7,000/ac, 11 made between €7,000 and €10,000/ac, 10 holdings made between €10,000 and €12,000/ac, four made between €15,000 and €20,000/ac and one property made over €20,000/ac.

DISPARITY

While the average per-acre price paid was a very respectable €10,070, there was a wide disparity in prices as can be seen from the gap between the highest and the lowest prices paid.

Paul Murtagh of Murtagh Brothers, Mullingar, remarked that most of the land sold by his firm would struggle to reach that price, a fact supported by Thomas Potterton of Trim, who said an average price of between €8,000 and €10,000/ac would be more reflective.

In Co Louth, Peter Flynn of Robert Daly and Co maintained that the average price for tillage land in the Louth area was closer to €11,000/ac in 2013. The average per acre price might be somewhat skewed by strong Dublin prices averaging €16,000/ac.

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All three auctioneers agreed that accessibility, road frontage and location in good farming areas were vital for the achievement of a good price.

"If you have no farmer in the locality interested in the property, you will not have a sale and if you do sell, you will not get a good price," said Thomas Potterton.

They maintained there was good confidence in the agricultural sector, especially dairy, but Mr Potterton cautioned that the edge went off the land market in the latter part of the year.

There was also general agreement that financial institutions were more willing to lend to farmers than to any other sector, coupled with a belief there appeared to be residues of 'old money' or 'Celtic Tiger cash' in certain sections of the farming community and when it came to safeguarding their reserves, they regarded land as the safest option for investment.

Irish Independent



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