This publication reports on the first Louisiana Ag Lenders and Land Appraiser’s survey. The survey is designed to give an update on land values and cash rents for three agricultural land uses, cropland, pasture and forestry, across the state of Louisiana. The survey was also designed to provide a general outlook on expectations of farmland price and rent, interest rate movements and expectations for farm solvency across the state. Responses to the survey are from the perspective of agricultural lenders and rural appraisers across Louisiana. Respondents were divided according to one of the five (5) AgCenter regions they primarily serve: the Northwest (region 1), Northeast (region 2), Central (region 3), Southwest (region 4) and Southeast (region 5). It is our hope that the results from this survey will be useful to all concerned stakeholders in Louisiana’s agricultural industry.
In general, survey participants expect values of both irrigated and non-irrigated cropland (~$3870/acre and ~$3240/acre respectively) to remain largely unchanged to slightly increasing in the Northern regions, while in other regions values of both irrigated and non-irrigated cropland are expected to remain generally unchanged. Cropland cash rents on the other hand are expected to have much more variation in movements with cash rents on non-irrigated land (average of ~$123/acre across the state) expected to decrease slightly in three of five regions and slightly increasing in one (Southeast). Cash rents on irrigated land (average of ~ $132/acre across the state) are expected to see increases in the Northwest and Southeast regions with other areas seeing mostly no change to some expectations of a cash rent decrease (Southwest region).
Survey respondents expect that both the values (average of ~$2750/acre for the state) and cash rents (average of ~$29/acre) on pastureland will see some increases in the Northwest region and decrease in the Southwest. Survey respondents expect the Southeast region to see increases in pastureland values and decreases in cash rents. Pastureland in other regions are expected to remain mostly unchanged. Mature hardwood and mature pineland values averaged ~$2910/acre and ~$3220/acre respectively at the state level.
On the behavior of farm financial indicators, the survey respondents expect no significant change in Chapter 12 bankruptcy filings in most regions in Louisiana. The exception being the Northeast region where a slight increase in Chapter 12 filings is expected. Interest rates on short term (operating) loans are generally expected to remain unchanged to decreasing except in the
Northwest region where short term interest rates may increase. Short term loan volume is expected to decrease except in the Central region where expectation is for operating loan volume in this region to increase. Survey respondents expect intermediate loan interest rates to generally decrease across the state and for intermediate loan volumes to increase in the Northeast and Central regions bucking the trend in the other three regions. Long term (real estate) loan interest rates are expected to decrease in most regions, while the volume of long term loans is expected to generally decrease. Long term loan volumes are expected to increase in the Northeast. The Northeast also had the highest agreement among survey respondents for long term loans being expected to decrease.