Farmland rental rates range from $50 to $250 per acre
CORNWALL — Farmland mostly increased in value in Eastern Ontario last year but remained substantially cheaper than the most expensive agricultural areas of the province, according to an annual survey that asks farmers about the per-acre prices in their respective areas.
The survey conducted by the University of Guelph’s Dr. Brady Deaton found that Eastern Ontario’s most costly farmland hit a median value of $15,000 per acre in Durham Region last year, up from $11,000 in 2021. Even at $15,000, that’s still only half of the $30,000 per acre reported for Southwestern Ontario’s Oxford and Perth counties, which led the province in farmland prices, according to the survey. The bottom third of Southwestern Ontario counties had a median farmland price of $15,000 or less.
The survey publishes median prices, rather than the average, which can be skewed by extreme examples on the high and low end.
Eastern Ontario’s next most expensive farmland was found in Ottawa (Carleton County), the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry (SDG) and the United Counties of Prescott and Russell, all at $12,000 per acre in 2022. A year earlier, the survey pegged Ottawa and SDG farmland at $10,300 and $10,600 per acre, while Prescott-Russell was $13,000 per acre.
Kawartha Lakes, Northumberland and Prince Edward County each had a median farmland price of $10,000 per acre in 2022. Northumberland was unchanged from a year earlier while Prince Edward County was up from $8,000 per acre. (A 2021 price wasn’t available for Kawartha Lakes.) The United Counties of Leeds and Grenville had the lowest median price at $5,000 per acre in 2022.
The survey also looked at farmland rental rates. Prescott-Russell was at the upper end of the Eastern Ontario scale at $250 per acre, up from $200 in 2021. The rate was $200 per acre in SDG and $150 in Ottawa, both unchanged from a year earlier. The rate was $100 per acre in most other parts of Eastern Ontario, but only $50 in Prince Edward County.
The report’s author cautions that the survey results are not useful for assigning a land value or rental rate on any specific land parcel.