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Urban buyers stampede to rural TexasUrban buyers stampede to rural Texashttps://www.recenter.tamu.edu/news/newstalk-texas/?Item=257232021-03-30T05:00:00Z2021-03-30T14:00:00Z

​​​​COLLEGE STATION – Spooked by pandemic fears and urban unrest, herds of Texas city-dwelling buyers descended on rural locations in latter 2020. When the dust settled, 552,707 acres had been purchased for a record $1.69 billion.

“Fourth quarter 2020 produced a remarkable increase in rural property transactions across most of Texas,” said Dr. Charles Gilliland, research economist for the Texas Real Estate Research Center at Texas A&M University. “Statewide, the 7,684 sales were up 28.9 percent from last year.”

The increased demand sent statewide land prices up 3.1 percent to $3,064 per acre. The typical sale was 1,139 acres.

“Taken together, the third and fourth quarter results signal an active and rising market with strong demand for land in most areas of Texas,” said Gilliland, who has studied state land markets for 40 years. “Currently, market professionals report a flood of interest in land purchases.”

“Austin-Waco-Hill Country rural markets exploded in the third and fourth quarters of 2020,” said Gilliland. “The 1,103 sales marked the first time the region recorded more than 1,000 in a quarter. Sales in the region were up 85.1 percent from the same time in 2019.”

Prices increased in all regions except for the Panhandle and South Plains. The West Texas and Austin-Waco-Hill Country Regions recorded small price increases. However, they did post large increases in the number of sales. 

Only Far West Texas, hit by falling oil prices, reported a sales decline. Transaction size fell everywhere except for South Texas. Total dollar volume fell in Far West Texas, grew modestly in the Gulf Coast and Brazos Bottom Regions, but expanded everywhere else.

A new report from the Texas Real Estate Research Center breaks down Texas land markets region by region. Read Texas Land Market Latest Developments here. The report also includes limited rural land data for Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi. 

An article by Gilliland, “See Ya Later, Next-Door Neighbor,” will be published in the forthcoming issue of TG magazine.

The Texas Real Estate Research Center is hosting a virtual “30th Annual Outlook for Texas Land Markets” conference April 21-23.

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