The auction season has taken off with gusto and already it looks like average land prices will surpass last year's returns. While last year's prices varied in general between €7,500/ac and €12,000/ac, sales so far this year are generally realising values of €9,000-12,000/ac. Indeed, the tables were turned this week in particular with Dublin land making €9,500/ac, while Monaghan ground made a whopping €17,025/ac.
The 60ac residential farm was located at Billis, Glasslough, Co Monaghan, exceeded all expectations when it sold in lots for a staggering €928,000, with one of the lots making €17,025/ac.
Located 3.5 miles from Monaghan town and two from the village of Glasslough, the farm had been let since 1977.
The single-storey dwelling is more than 200 years old but habitable, while the farmyard has a range of out-offices and lofted stables, a cubicle house, a walled silage pit, a cattle crush and other cattle handling facilities.
The land is described as fertile and flat with road frontage onto two roads.
Lot one consisted of the house and farmyard on 19ac with lot two including the 41ac.
In an unusual auction, the farm was offered in lots and the entire consecutively and then the auction continued taking bids on the lots and the entire concurrently.
The bidder on the entire dropped out at €925,000, while lot one went on to sell to a horse breeder for €247,000 (€13,166/ac).
The 41ac parcel was bought by a local young dairy farmer for €681,000 (€17,025/ac).
It was not surprising that this portion of the land made a record breaking price as it is renowned far and near for its capacity to produce early grass
In a positive signal for the value of tillage ground, a 28ac parcel of land in stubble at Killeen, Narraghmore, Co Kildare, sold at auction last week for €380,000 (€13,620/ac).
The property had been guided at €10,000/ac.
Described as a great piece of arable land with no waste, the stubble land is laid out in four divisions with good shelter and mature trees. There are no buildings and the land comes with 500m of road frontage and multiple access points.
John Osborne, of selling agents Leinster Marts in Kilcullen, said bidding was brisk when it opened at €250,000 in front of a crowd of 40.
Five bidders brought the price to €365,000 before the property was put on the market. Bidding continued in increments of €2,000 and €3,000 until the property was knocked down to a solicitor who bought it in trust. The under bidder was a local farmer.
Elsewhere, a parcel of 41ac at Coolquay, the Ward, Co Dublin, exceeded its guide price of €7,500/ac when it sold for €9,653/ac (€400,000) at auction last week.
Auctioneer Paul Grimes described the ground, located off the old N2 and 6km from Ashbourne, as super tillage land with 710m of road frontage.
It was bought a number of years ago for development and was sold on behalf of Grant Thornton. It is to be expected that it will go back to agricultural production. The bidding opened at €200,000 before it was sold to a solicitor who bought it in trust.