Ray said the most noticeable inquiry over the spring 2017 sales period and into the 2018 autumn sales period was for land to produce “beef, beef, beef”.
He said among these potential buyers there were existing beef producers who planned to expand.
“We have got a number of people who have got certain specific requirement for properties and they are waiting for the right one to come up,” Ray said.
High price of beef propels grazing land sales in South Gippsland
The demand for beef grazing properties reflects the remarkable rise in the price of beef across Australia over the previous 5 years from an average of around 200 cent per kilogram to now where it is been reported* yearling steers often average between 300 to 400 cents per kg. Ruralco Property Bunyip office branch manager, Ray Cullen, has lived and farmed at Coral Lynn in South Gippsland since the early 1980s.
He has operated as a real estate agent since 2012 in the central, west and south Gippsland region as well as listing properties further north in the Yarra Valley as well as Robinvale and Euston in NSW.
Ray’s sales region includes beef cattle, dairy farms, market gardens and horticultural production properties plus lifestyle and hobby farms. The south Gippsland area is renowned for having areas of fertile peat loam soils especially around Lang Lang, Iona and Devon Meadows.
Ray said he has a number of local market gardeners on his waiting list that want a bigger property in one of the fertile peat loam areas such as Lang Lang.
He said land suitable for growing vegetables now has a number of issues that impacted on and affected its value in his sales area, particularly Lang Lang.
He said conservation regulations that protect trees, access to viable amounts of water and the competition for land from sand mining companies has complicated the local horticultural real estate market.
Ray said another of the more noticeable inquiries his office received over the past autumn and spring sales season came from tradesmen, as well as from lifestyle property seekers and land bankers.
He said there were inquiries from trades’ people who wanted up to 20 hectares of land to build on and use for their family home and as their work base.
Land banking drives some South Gippsland property sales
Ray said he also has a few wealthy individuals waiting for appropriate land banking opportunities as a longterm investment.
He said the people involved in this idea are willing to wait decades and see if local zoning rules change and deliver them an opportunity to sell.
Their criteria is to buy land as close to an existing town residential area as possible then wait Ray said.
*From the Meat and Livestock Australia March 2015 report The History of Australian Cattle Prices since 1970.