Top dairy operators in the hunt for 700ac Roscommon farm
Dairy interests have made up the vast bulk of the enquiries for a 700ac farm in Roscommon that is on the market for long-term lease.
Around 35 different parties have expressed an interest in the property and close to half of these have walked the farm.
The property is owned by Marcus Hanly and the rental is being handled by the Cork-based farm consultant and auctioneer Mike Brady.
Mr Brady expects to receive up to seven serious lease proposals by the end of August and is hopeful of agreeing a deal for the farm by the end of September.
He said 90pc of the interest to-date had been from the dairy sector, with few enquiries from beef finishers - even though the farm is currently run as a beef unit and has housing for up 1,000 cattle.
Some of the top dairy operators in the country are understood to have viewed the holding, as well as a few from Northern Ireland.
The holding is located between the towns of Strokestown and Elphin. It is currently in grass and is divided in to two blocks of around 550ac and 150ac.
The lease price mentioned is €225/ac which equates to an annual charge for the 700ac of €157,500.
However, Mr Brady stressed that the rental price would not be the only consideration when assessing offers.
He said candidates from the dairy sector would have to have experience in managing large numbers of cows, and be financially secure.
"Capital expenditure of close to €2m will be required to develop the farm properly," Mr Brady explained.
He said that facilities for up to 650 cows will have to be put in place by the successful tenant.
However, he maintained that the farm has the potential to deliver profits of up to €250,000 a year after paying rent and labour.
The long-term lease agreement will be based on a 20-year term, with rent reviews every five years. Payments will be on a monthly basis.
The farm is available from January 1, 2018 but Mr Brady said it could be leased this autumn if necessary.
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