Key Factors to Consider When Investing in Farmland
Getting the right farmland is not easy. However, with a good checklist, you can purchase a property that meets your agricultural needs. Get information on the critical factors to think about before investing in farmland.
Finding the right agricultural farmland can be taxing if you have not dedicated some time to research. You have to research several options before finding a property that fits your goals.
When it comes to buying land, rash decisions are advised against as they can cost you a lot of time, money, and regrets. You have to be prepared and make some serious considerations in the process. The process will probably not be easy. But because you are making a big investment, it is necessary and worthwhile.
Here is a comprehensive guide to help you secure and invest in the right farmland.
1. Topography Of The Farm
Topography is one of the geographical factors that affect agriculture. It plays an instrumental role in the success of farmland and has a lot to do with soil erosion, the quality of transportation facilities, and ease of tillage.
Usually, farmers will avoid farmlands characterized by steep hills as they are more susceptible to erosion and water washes away essential nutrients from the soil. The degree of slope has a significant impact on the quality of yields.
While this is the case, you also need to note that the impact of topography also varies with regions. Ensure that the farmland's topography supports the needs of the crops you intend to farm.
You also need to ask yourself if the slope will impede your ability to use farming technology. The degree to which you can mechanize your agriculture will depend on the topography. For instance, if the land features steep slopes or is hilly, the use of machinery could be limited.
2. The Soil's Nutrients And Acidity Levels
For your crops to thrive, the soil composition needs to be ideal. The soil should have the right nutrients in the correct levels for the crops you intend to grow. Whether or not your crops will thrive and if you get good yields will depend on this.
Before you buy land, get a soil testing kit to measure the pH and nutrient level. If you find that the soil does not have the nutrients your crops needs, you can consider looking for other options or investing in correcting it before you start farming.
Some of the key nutrients to look out for include sulfur, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and aluminum, to mention a few. Also, remember that different soil pH works for varying crops. For instance, slightly acidic soils are ideal for wheat, barley, corn, peanuts, and cotton.
Neutral soil is good for clover, beets, and alfalfa, whereas soils with a pH of 5 work well for blueberries and potatoes.
Water is life, and it matters when buying farmland. You need to know the water sources and the water quality available on the property. Some factors that determine irrigation water quality include soluble salts, acidity, and alkalinity. To ascertain this, it has to be tested in a laboratory to establish its suitability for irrigation.
Poor quality water can stunt the growth of your crops and affect your yields. That is why you also need to know the source of the water. Is it recycled or reclaimed water? Runoff or recycled water often requires reconditioning before being used for irrigation for excessive soluble salts and disease-causing organisms.
You also need to establish the number of gallons available on the farmland every minute, as you need to be sure you have enough irrigation water. With this information, you will be able to plan adequately. For instance, if the water is not enough, you may have to consider additional sources to meet the demands of the farm.
The information will also help analyze the financial feasibility of the investment.
4. Find Out If The Area Has Environmental Issues
It is risky to purchase farmland without a clue of existing environmental issues you may be inheriting if they are there. Take time to look into the farm to see if there are any issues to avoid potential liabilities.
Does the area have polluted water sources or contaminated soils? Is the farmland susceptible to natural disasters such as floods and droughts that could inhibit the development of crops? Do earthquakes and tornadoes often affect the area? These are some of the things you need to be aware of before committing.
5. Proximity To Markets, Retailers, And Distributors
How close is the farmland to potential markets? Remember that growing plants is one thing, and finding a buyer is another. It would be good if there were restaurants, farmers' markets, and local produce stores not far from the farmland.
You have to consider the transport network as you need to find a farm that allows you easy access to the markets. This is the best way to ensure you create an efficient and sustainable supply chain.
A centralized farmland location that allows easy access to several cities and towns could turn your farm into a vibrant and lucrative business.
6. How Much Farmland You Need
Farmland can be expensive, and there would be no point in buying land that you don't need. Before you look for land to purchase, establish what you want to use it for and map the use.
You could create a floorplan indicating everything you need to have on it and make your calculations. This will prevent you from overbuying and serve as a checklist when evaluating different options.
Only buy what you need to save time, money, and energy.
Get The Right Farmland With The Help Of A Farm Advisor
If you are looking for farmland to invest in, these are the several factors you must consider getting the right property.
Because it is a big investment, it is important not to rush the process. Leverage the support of real estate advisors and farm management experts to find farmland that fits your agricultural needs.
Midwest Land Management is a team of farm management professionals that can help you purchase the right farmland and provide guidance on the ins and outs of agricultural projects. To learn more, contact us today.