USDA has released their 2010 summary of ag land values and cash rents. Overall, cropland values were up 1.1% from 2009 to 2010. Cash rents were up 3%, from $99/acre in 2009 to $102/acre in 2010.

The U.S. farm real estate value – a measurement of the value of all land and buildings on farms – averaged $2,140/acre on Jan. 1, 2010, up 1.4% from 2009. Regional changes in the average value of farm real estate ranged from a 4.9% increase in the Northern Plains regions to a 3.3% decline in the Southeast region. The highest farm real estate values remained in the Northeast region at $4,690/acre. The Mountain region had the lowest farm real estate value, $911/acre.

The U.S. cropland value increased by $30/acre (1.1%) to $2,700/acre. In the Northern Plains and Delta regions, the average cropland value increased 6.9% and 6.1%, respectively, from the previous year. However, in the Southeast and Mountain regions, cropland values decreased by 5.3% and 5%, respectively.

Cropland Average Value per Acre

Year Average Value
2006 $2,300
2007 $2,530
2008 $2,760
2009 $2,670
2010 $2,700
Change 2009-2010 1.1%

Nationally, cash rents per acre paid to landlords for cropland in 2010 rose $3 (3%). Cropland cash rents averaged $102/acre, compared with $99 for 2009. The increase in cropland rental rates are the result of producers receiving strong commodity prices.

The Appalachian region had the highest percentage increase for cropland, 7.6% above 2009. Cropland cash rents increased $2.50/acre to $71 in the Northern Plains region and $3/acre to $152 in the Corn Belt region. The Corn Belt and Northern Plains regions account for slightly more than one half of cash rented cropland acreage in the U.S.

The major corn- and soybean-producing states of Illinois, Indiana and Iowa experienced increases in cropland cash rents. Illinois increased 3.7% to $169/acre, while Indiana and Iowa both increased approximately 1% to $141 and $176, respectively.

Cropland Rented for Cash Average Cash Rent per Acre

Year Cash Rent
2006 $79.50
2007 $77.50
2008 $85.50
2009 $99
2010 $102