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The Land Investor

News and Commentary on Land-based Investment

Book Review: Investor’s Guide to Farmland

Book Review – Investor’s Guide to Farmland

Authors: Greyson S. Colvin and T. Marc Schober

I represent investors in U.S. land transactions, and read Investor’s Guide to Farmland in an effort to hone my personal farmland investment IQ; and also, to provide my clients with an investor friendly but sophisticated introduction to the asset class. The book fit the bill, and I have provided a copy of Investor’s Guide to Farmland to several clients, some who are longtime farmland investors and others who are just beginning to consider the asset class. The book provides a good overview of how to analyze farmland and the factors to consider in farmland investment.

The book’s focus is is on arable row crop farmland which produces grains including corn, soybeans and wheat. The case for the uniqueness and desirability of U.S. Midwest farmland is well presented. Of the world’s best arable land, the book points out, the U.S. Midwest is singular by way of its productivity combined with political stability and infrastructure.

The book is geared to the fundamental value investor with a long term investment horizon. Colvin and Schober emphasize “not all farmland is created equal”, and the market for farmland can be inefficient. Industry contacts combined with diligence and fundamental analysis can identify farms at prices that are well justified from a value standpoint. Their approach is based on solid fundamentals and is about steady growth and attractive returns.

They make clear the need to do your homework and seek good advice to make an informed decision to understand what you are buying and implementing a management and lease arrangement that best meets your particular objectives.

Much of what we read about farmland today is the hype about recent “trends”; but nothing to do with value. Investor’s Guide to Farmland is more about a long term farmland investment strategy that is disciplined and value driven.


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