Plymouth Co. farmland sells for record-breaking price

Thursday, October 20, 2022
An aerial view looking east of the 55-acre land parcel which sold for a record $26,250 an acre on Monday, Oct. 10.
(Photo Courtesy of Brock Auction Co.)

REMSEN — A 55.6-acre parcel of Plymouth County farmland sold for a record high of $26,250 an acre at auction Monday, Oct. 10.

The land, owned by John Fiscus, is located in Section 2 of Remsen Township, on the northeast edge of Plymouth County. That is four miles east of Remsen and one-half mile north on County Road L-22.

Brock Auction Co. conducted the sale which was held at American Bank in Remsen with online bidding on HiBid.

Auctioneer Bruce Brock called it an “unbelievable sale.”

“I didn’t realize how good it was until the guys from Des Moines called and said it was not only a Plymouth County record, it was also the highest selling piece of ground ever in the state of Iowa,” Brock said Wednesday, Oct. 12.

Brock said Jim Rothermich, MAI, ARA, ACL of The Land Talker, posted this on his Twitter page Monday, Oct. 10, “Sold! $1.45+ million or $26,250/acre; #2 member of Iowa’s $26,000/acre club; record price for cropland with no influence from development or wind energy; price negotiated in minutes. Good sale by Brock Auction Co., Bruce Brock & Austin Popken.”

Brock said, “There have only been two of us who have sold land in the $26,000 range. There was one in Sioux County that sold for $26,000 just a month ago, that was the record at that time, and then this one brought $26,250 an acre.”

At $26,250 an acre, the parcel sold for just over $1.458 million.

“A local farmer, a neighbor, purchased the farmland. There were several neighbors bidding on it right up to $26,000. It was a really well sought-after piece and just shows that the market is still really strong,” Brock said.

Brock said there is a lot of interest all over the state in farmland.

“We sold one last Friday (Oct. 7), 240 acres, and this one on Monday. We are going down to Madison County this Friday and sell 160 acres. There is just a lot of demand for land all over the place,” Brock said.

What is driving the market and land values?

“I think the biggest thing is the lack of availability. There seems like there’s a lot of land for sale right now, but land is getting into fewer and fewer hands all the time. Bigger and bigger operators are buying it.

“We have a lot of outside interests from groups that are investment groups, that land has gotten on their radar screen and they are, realize the importance of food. The world is growing, and they have to have food, they have to have water. They don’t all have to have cell phones and things like that. But to survive they need to have food and water,” Brock said.

In advertising the land parcel, the ad noted, “It may not be the biggest piece of ground, but it is certainly one of the most productive and powerful anywhere.”

“We just happen to be sitting on what I think is the biggest gold mine in the history of the world. Right now, we have land that will produce without rainfall, or subsidized rainfall, like we don’t need irrigation systems and things like that. We can plant a crop and the good Lord will give us the rain and the water we need most of the time. We’re a little dry this year, but not always. We have what everybody needs,” he said.

“The market is strong for sure. It gives a good foundational strength to our farming community,” he concluded.