A substantial quality farm in West Cork is always going to attract some attention from serious farmers, given the way such holdings have gone in recent years.
The latest agricultural offering this week from Clonakilty-based auctioneers Hodnett Forde Property Services will be another interesting one to watch.
Set on 74 acres of fertile lands near the village of Ballineen, and with a layout that lends itself to subdivision, there is much to interest a wide range of potential buyers here.
“It has a traditional farmhouse and outbuildings and it’s located about 1.5km to the west of the village,” selling agent John Hodnett explained.
Ballineen is one-half of the twin villages of Ballineen and Enniskeane and is just a 15-minute drive from Bandon — the area’s busy market town.
This has long been a prominent zone of intensive farming dominated by the dairying sector. Indeed, the farm is set right behind the Carbery Group’s headquarters and dairy processing plant along what is the main commercial road linking Cork City, Bandon, and Bantry.
“It’s laid out in two divisions. Lot One has roughly 37 acres. Lot Two has the house and outbuildings on 32 acres and then there are approximately 6 acres on their own just across the road. It’s all in grass, it has good road frontage and it’s well fenced. For the most part, it’s good ground and it has been leased for the past number of years.”
The farmhouse is in good condition, although in need of modernisation. Accommodation includes an entrance hall, two reception rooms and bathroom on the ground floor, while on the first floor, there are four bedrooms and a second bathroom.
“It has a nice southerly aspect,” says John of the dwelling, which has a ‘G’ energy rating. “There’s a garage on its eastern gable end too and it has oil-fired central heating installed. The property has a private well and private drainage.
“The outbuildings require modernising and they’re located to the rear of the residence,” adds John. They include two cubicle houses, an old-style hay barn, an open silo and a collection of traditional stone outbuildings.
It will be interesting to see how the market reacts to this offering; whether it will end up being sold to two or three separate purchasers or whether it will be one progressive farmer who will take the entire holding.
“It’s located in a good dairying region,” says John, “and you would expect the main interest to be from that sector.”
The farm also comes with entitlements.
According to John, combining the annual entitlements and greening, the next owner will have a ready income in the region of €7,000.
The price expectation is in the region of “€850,000, plus...”
At €11,500 per acre, it’s an expectation that’s in keeping with recent prices in the area, albeit on the slightly conservative side – farms of good quality in the general Bandon area have been regularly achieving €14,000-€15,000 per acre.
Whether this one lives up to that billing or not will be revealed in time and the final price may be determined by a bidding battle on one or three fronts.