Price of Canada's farmland rising on strong demand, short supply
Most expensive land is in Bradford, Ont., where the price per acre has soared 25% since 2012, Re/Max study says
The Re/Max real estate organization says strong demand for Canadian farmland, and a shortage of listings, has pushed up the price per acre in all but two of the 17 markets it monitors.
The biggest percentage increases this year have been in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario.
Re/Max says only the Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia and the Fraser Valley in British Columbia have seen no increase from 2012 prices.
The Fraser Valley had the highest prices, by far, of any market covered by the Re/Max study at between $40,000 and $60,000 per acre — the same as last year.
The next most expensive farmland recorded by the study was in Bradford, Ont., where land was valued at $25,000 per acre or more — up 25 per cent from 2012.
Re/Max says the biggest demand is from established farm operators who want to expand.
"Be it cashcropper or livestock farmer — the economies of scale continue to support expansion," said Elton Ash, regional executive vice-president for Re/Max of Western Canada.
"There are many buyers waiting in the wings, but momentum is hampered to some extent by a shortage of farmland listings."
Gurinder Sandhu, regional director for Re/Max Ontario-Atlantic Canada, said there hasn't been any real fallout yet from reduced prices for agricultural commodities.
"Yet, some moderation is likely, given several years of back-to-back record-setting gains. Some investment funds have already scaled back on purchases, still moving ahead but at a more cautious pace," Sandhu said.