RICS report on Sussex Farmland
Sussex Farmland in the UK are being targeted by the new breed of investors, fuelling demand and raising land prices, according to the rural land survey published last November by RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors). The average price of a Sussex Farmland for the third quarter 2004 continues to edge closer to £10 000 per hectare, with price rises rivaling those of the residential sector in the past year. RICS finds that overall prices have risen by up to 30% in 12 months and 130% since the early 1990s. Although land prices continue to rise, this has not weakened demand as non-farmer buyers look to Sussex Farmland as a source of investment potential. A possible reason for this could be relief from inheritance tax, but a more likely explanation centres around non-farmers buying neighboring farmland to protect the expensive residential property they have purchased. Latent demand is strong but sellers are few, so sales have declined to their lowest level recorded by the survey.
Despite the sale of Sussex Farmland declining noticeably over the third quarter, surveyors remain confident that farmland prices for the next 12 months will continue to rise. It is expected that rising interest rates will curb future rises in sussex farmland prices, while clearer understanding of the Single Farm Payment regime may lead to more availability of land next year.
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