Land in East Cork has been selling very well of late, and it’s no surprise, writes Conor Power.
It’s a part of the country with an abundance of good, level, well-drained land.
Even though the dairying sector is very much the dominant one in these parts, other sectors are very prominent too, with a strong mixture of dairying, tillage, dry cattle and horse-breeding.
And the main motorway in the country runs through the area, for a high level of accessibility which makes it very attractive for outside farmers.
Finally, you have the markets of Cork city and various important towns in the area (such as Midleton and Fermoy), not to mention the proximity of ports and airports.
A large holding currently listed with Fermoy-based auctioneers Dick Barry & Son is in the midst of this vibrant agricultural area and should fare well on the market over the coming weeks and months, one would imagine.
The property is a 105-acre residential farm in the townland of Leitrim, near the village of Kilworth.
According to the agents, it’s good-quality holding that should appeal to a number of farmers, mostly local but also those from farther afield.
“It’s all good, south-facing land,” says selling agent Michael Barry of the property, which is naturally divided by a roadway, with the farm bungalow on a block of about 70 acres, and another 35 acres across the road a little distance away.
The road frontage is extensive, according to the agents, and water is supplied by a local mains supply. The way in which the farm is laid out is such that it would lend itself to selling in a number of lots, depending on how demand for the property pans out.
“The bungalow could be sold separately from the rest of the land,” says Michael. “Suggested lots could be the house on half an acre, the 70 acres with the farmyard and buildings in Lot 2, and then the remaining 35 acres across the road in the third lot.”
The location near Kilworth means that demand will be there for the house on its own: “It could all go together of course, but I have a feeling that the house will go on its own. Kilworth is a very popular village, and there would be people looking for a house nearby.
“If local farmers are buying the land, they won’t tend to be interested in the house, or they might buy it and then sell off the house.”
The house is a modern three-bedroom bungalow in good condition, according to the agents.
Its roadside location within 3km of Kilworth village and about 12km from Fermoy will make it attractive for a number of clients.
The land, meanwhile, is the main asset in this property, a good quality holding well laid out and fenced, according to the selling agents, with no entitlements at the moment.
“We’re guiding at a realistic €10,000 an acre, and we’ve put a value of €160,000 on the house separately,” says Michael.
The €10,000 mark for the land is certainly realistic.
Good land in this area would be expected to fetch something more like €12,000 or €13,000 per acre.
However, we live in an era where recent boom-to-bust scenarios are fresh in the memory, and even though there has been some progress on the Brexit issue, there are still niggling uncertainties as to what impact it will have on Irish agriculture over the coming years.
This all feeds into a level of caution in the agricultural land market, which might dissipate if buoyancy in milk prices was to continue.