UK Farmland Market Q3 2015

MiM Q3 2015
 
The Supply of UK Farmland

21 October 2015

Farmland stock publicly marketed across Great Britain stayed static during the first half of 2015 compared with 2014.

 

Our research shows that 132,000 acres were publicly marketed across Great Britain in the first three quarters of 2015. This equated to about 11% more land was available to buy than in 2014 and 2013, and 2% more compared with the average of the last five years (2011-15). So there has not been a flood or significant increase in availability nationally (see table 1).

However, there has been significant variation between regions (see table 3) and in the regions where values have fallen – the East of England, the East Midlands, the South East and the North of England - there has been more land for sale.

In the regions where values have been stable or risen - the South West of England and West Midlands - there has been less for sale.

Looking at supply by land type, there has been a significant increase in the amount of arable land for sale, in all regions other than Wales and the West Midlands. It is up43% in England to 44,800 acres and has increased56% in Scotland to 10,000 acres, in the year to the end of September.

TABLE 1

Variation in market activity

 
Variation in market activity

Source: Savills Smiths Gore Research

The amount of dairy land for sale has also increased, by 16% in England but it is still below 3,000 acres in total, so a very small market. There has been little change in Scotland and no dairy farms publically marketed in Wales.

Less livestock and mixed land was offered for sale. In England, 37,900 acres have been advertised so far in 2015, which is a fall of 12%. In Scotland there was a rise of 12% to 23,600 acres, but this is still below 2013 levels.

The increase in land for sale, which is still at historically low levels , is not the sole reason for the fall in farmland values. More negative buyer sentiment, largely driven by lower commodity prices, has become a significant driver of the market.

Demand from farmer buyers has weakened, so for some sales there have only been one or two bidders, so agreed sale values are not being pushed up by competition. Demand from non-farmer buyers has been less affected by commodity prices and remains good for amenity and investment-type farms.

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Key Contacts

Ian Bailey

Ian Bailey

Director
Rural Research

Savills Margaret Street

+44 (0) 207 299 3099

 

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