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Sask Farm Land Values Climb


Saskatchewan farmland values climb

Regina, Saskatchewan, October 1, 2007 – The average value of farmland in Saskatchewan increased by 3.0 per cent in the first half of 2007, according to Farm Credit Canada (FCC) research.

FCC is the leading provider of financing to the agriculture industry in Canada and also provides services such as farm management software, information and learning. FCC researches and publicizes changes in land values across Canada twice a year.

“The FCC Farmland Values report contains valuable information that has helped Canadians make business-related decisions for the past 20 years,” says Rémi Lemoine, Vice-President, Credit Risk. “The report provides provincial information on recent trends in agricultural land values and their evolution over the last decade. Farmland Values is one of many ways that FCC helps primary producers and others involved in agriculture to grow and prosper.”

Saskatchewan's farmland values have been rising steadily, with a 3.0 per cent increase from January to July 2007 following a 1.3 per cent increase during the last six months of 2006. For the previous five years, farmland values have been increasing by about 1.0 per cent semi-annually.

Overall, Canadian land values increased by 3.6 per cent in the first half of 2007. This increase is consistent with Canada's growth trend since 2000.

The complete Farmland Values Report is available at www.FarmlandValues.ca


Canada's Hottest Commodity


Saskatchewan farmland!

For years, prices for Saskatchewan farmland have been relatively stable — but now the market is catching fire.

Investors from across the country and around the world who've been buying houses and apartments are also snapping up farmland in the province.

That's good news for people like Martin Bettker, who recently auctioned off items on his farm  — everything from chainsaws to tractors — northeast of Saskatoon.

The land is already gone, with half being sold to local buyers and the rest to investors from Alberta.

Still, Bettker said, it's not easy parting with the land his grandfather settled almost a century ago.

"It's hard to let it go, but I've got a one-year-old girl and a three-year-old boy and you've got to feed them," he said.

While there's nothing new about farmers struggling to make a living, what is new is the price they can get for selling their land.

"It just started here last December and then into the spring here it just went crazy,"  Bettker said.

According to Saskatoon real estate agent Don Fry, the price of farmland has more than doubled in the last year. He gave an example of about 324 hectares of farmland recently selling for $2 million.

"That's substantially different than it was two years ago — $600,000," he said.

Part of the explanation for the recent boom could be a change in the rules. Until a few years ago, only Saskatchewan residents could buy farmland — an attempt by the provincial government to preserve the family farm.

Critics said what it really did was keep prices artificially low. Now, investors from across Canada can buy Saskatchewan farmland.

The rising interest in farm property is happening at the same time the market for other kinds of real estate in Saskatchewan is turning red hot.

On the outskirts of Saskatoon, backhoes and bulldozers are working overtime making room for more houses.

What used to be a stable real estate market is off the charts, according to Harry Janzen, a spokesman for the Saskatoon Region Association of Realtors.

Bidding wars for property are the new norm, with the winner paying well above the asking price.

Worldwide investors

About half of those buyers are people who plan to live in their new homes, Janzen said.

"We're also looking at a significant sector of investors, not only coming from Alberta but also British Columbia and other areas literally worldwide.

Potential buyers from Australia; London, England; and New York have been coming by, he said.

Many of these investors made money in Alberta real estate, but think that market is almost tapped out.

Brett Wilson made a career investing in Calgary's energy sector, but now he's buying thousands of acres of land in Saskatchewan.

Wilson rents his land to farmers, either for cash or a share of the crops they grow.

It's a long-term investment — one he plans to hand down to his children, he said.

CBC News


Welcome to Saskatchewan


Capital: Regina
Population(2002): 1,010,007
Flower: Red Lily
Bird: Sharp-tailed Grouse

Geography

Saskatchewan is bounded by the Northwest Territories (N), Manitoba (E), North Dakota and Montana (S), and Alberta (W). One of the Prairie Provinces, its northern third is part of the Canadian Shield . The principal rivers are the Churchill, North and South Saskatchewan, and Qu'Appelle. Between the Saskatchewan and Churchill rivers lies a mixed forest belt that provides much timber; a section is preserved as Prince Albert National Park. 

Only in S Saskatchewan has there been substantial settlement and development.
Regina is the capital and second largest city; Saskatoon is the largest city, and Prince Albert and Moose Jaw are other important centers.

Economy and Higher Education

Except for a semiarid section in the southwest used for grazing and an area in the east and central portion given over to mixed farming and dairying, the land is devoted to the raising of hard wheat. Saskatchewan normally produces two thirds of Canada's wheat. The vast expanses of unbroken plain are well suited to large-scale mechanized farming. Oats, barley, rye, rapeseed, and flax are also grown throughout this region. The historic occupation of fur trapping is still practiced. 

Saskatchewan is rich in minerals. Oil and natural gas, found under the prairie, are by far the province's most important minerals. The region north of Lake Athabaska has been exploited for ores yielding uranium. The area around Flin Flon, in the northeast, is mined for copper, zinc, and gold. Coal is mined in the southwest. Potash mining began in the 1950s near Saskatoon and Esterhazy, and Canada is now a leading producer of the mineral. Most of the province's industries process raw materials. 

Institutions of higher education include Aldergate College, at Moose Jaw; the Univ. of Regina; and the Univ. of Saskatchewan, at Saskatoon
.

 

 

*Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition, Copyright (c) 2003.

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