Following the robust price recovery from 2012 through 2013 when prices surged by 7 to 10.5 percent annually, Texas land markets seem to have taken a break. Prices remained almost unchanged in 2015 with a 1 percent increase followed by the 2016 increase of 2.8 percent R. At $2,501 per acre, the year-end 2016 price retreated modestly from the third quarter price level with inflation-adjusted prices retreating to a modest 1.7 percent increase over 2015 year-end results. However, that real price of $434 (in 1966 dollars) set another record high annual price for the state. The statewide typical size was 1,119 acres.
Oil price woes continued to plague regional markets, seeing weak performance the Gulf Coast – Brazos Bottom, South Texas, and Austin-Waco-Hill Country regions where land prices retreated or barely increased over 2015 results. Continued price increases in the West Texas, Northeast Texas, and Panhandle and South Plains regions offset the performance in those weak regions to register the 2.8 percent statewide rise in prices.
Continuing weakness in prices for agricultural commodities as well as uncertainty about oil prices loom as threats to the market for 2017. As the year unfolds clarifying trends in those influences, future land price trends will become apparent moving reluctant would be participants to become buyers and sellers.
This article appears in the spring 2017 issue of Texas LAND magazine. CLICK HERE to read more and subscribe to future issues.