I have received many calls recently inquiring about average land leasing rates across the state. There are two major publications that offer this type of data to landowners. In addition to the USDA NASS survey results I blogged about earlier this month, the Texas Chapter of the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers publishes the Texas Rural Land Value Trends Report.
This publication, which comes out each April, looks at land prices for the prior year across Texas, broken down into 7 regions and then into several sub-regions. It reports average rates for land sales as well as land rentals. The publication also looks at how these rates have changed since the prior year, factors driving land prices, such as commodity prices and water availability, and reports on the most commonly planted crops in the region. To view the publication, click here.
As an example, for Region 1, which includes much of the Panhandle and South Plains, the report shows land value ranges and rental ranges for several classes of property: Irrigated cropland (good water); irrigated cropland (fair water); dry cropland (east); dry cropland (west); rangeland; and Conservation Reserve Program. Looking at Rangeland for the “North Panhandle” area, the report shows a rental range that has been stable with stable activity at $7-12 per acre, while the land values, also stable, come in at between $450 – $1,200/acre. For the same area, irrigated cropland with good water shows value ranges from $3,000 to $4,000 per acre, which are stable/increasing, and rental rates from $150-250 per acre, which are stable. This same data is duplicated for all 7 regions.
Keep in mind, oftentimes the best place to get accurate information about land values and rental rates by word of mouth in the area. I always encourage folks to visit with their neighbors, with other landowners, with other livestock producers, and with their County Extension Agent when looking to determine the value of specific land in a specific area. And, as always, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of ensuring that lease agreements are put into writing. Written leases do not need to be long or complex, but need to be utilized to protect both parties to the lease agreement. For more information on drafting lease agreements, click here.