July 16, 2021 — Austin
The number of small land sales in Texas increased significantly in 2020, while the price per acre hit an all-time high, according to the 2021 edition of the Texas Small Land Sales Report released today by Texas REALTORS®.
The total number of small land sales across Texas increased 34%, with 10,465 tracts sold. The average price per acre grew 3.8% year-over-year to $6,471 an acre.
“After spending a year in lockdown, and with so many Texans working from home, many buyers are seeking more space and are looking for land away from city life,” said Marvin Jolly, chairman of Texas REALTORS®. “These buyers are not only farmers and ranchers. Many are moving from out of state and are purchasing land in Texas due to the attractive opportunities and quality of land available.”
The number of small land sales increased in all seven regions across the state. Far West Texas experienced the strongest increase at 53%, followed by Austin-Waco-Hill Country with a 33% increase over last year.
The report also revealed the average tract size for small land sales in Texas decreased from 32 acres in 2019 to 30 acres in 2020. Most regions across Texas saw a decrease in average tract size except for the West Texas and Gulf Coast-Brazos Bottom regions.
Charles Gilliland, Ph.D., economist with the Texas Real Estate Research Center at Texas A&M University, commented, “I’ve never seen this high of demand for small land before. The market for land has become as competitive as the market for single-family homes. Last year, land sales activity gained steam in the third and fourth quarter; this momentum has continued into 2021. Although the price per acre increased slightly in 2020, I anticipate stronger price increases ahead in the remainder of 2021.”
The definition of a “small” land sale varies by region but is generally a land sale of 200 acres or less. The exception is Far West Texas, where 500 to 8,000 acres qualifies as a small land sale.
Chairman Jolly concluded, “As more people choose to move to Texas, land sales activity is likely to continue to be competitive. Texas REALTORS® is optimistic that the newly created State Broadband Office will enhance the connectivity of rural locations and further increase the appeal and demand for land. We encourage anyone looking to purchase land in Texas to work with a Texas REALTOR® who specializes in the area and type of real estate that person desires.”