Missouri: New Cash Rental Survey Shows Some Downward Trends

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    The latest USDA cash rental survey shows decreasing rental rates in some areas of Missouri, says University of Missouri Extension agricultural business specialist Joe Koenen.

    USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released its annual survey Sept. 9. View data on Missouri counties here.

    “Some of the better crop counties in central and north Missouri showed a decrease in rental rates, reflecting lower crop prices,” Koenen says. Other counties remain unchanged, and pasture rates held stable or showed slight increases.

    Koenen, who teaches classes on cash rent trends for MU Extension, says the NASS report could be an early indicator of rent trends.

    Low prices and high corn yields will put pressure on rental rates, he says. Soybean prices dropped, but not as much as corn prices. A decrease in soybean prices also will likely affect rent prices. “How much is still to be determined.”

    Koenen says it is important for landowners and renters to know yields on cropland. Yields and land quality affect what the renter pays.

    Pasture and forage land rental rates remain stable, he says. “Lower livestock prices will likely put some pressure on pasture rental rates, but they are not likely to decrease as much due to the current competition and lack of available pasture.” Factors besides yield, such as good fences and adequate water, also affect pasture rental rates.

    Last year, an MU Extension survey showed corn dryland rent averaged $145.50 per acre per year statewide while soybean cropland averaged $148.74. Good pastureland ranged from $10 to $100 per acre, with the average at $38.41. To see the survey, go here.

    Atchison County, in the far northwestern corner of the state, topped cash rental rates at $192 per acre. Iron and Crawford counties in southern Missouri published the lowest rates at $18 and $17 per acre, respectively.

    Koenen recommends that landowners keep abreast of changing trends to assure fair leases.

    The MU Extension guide “Farm Lease Agreement” (G426) is available for free download here.


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