Foreign buyers dominate two-speed rural sales
MORE than $180 million worth of blue-chip farmland has changed hands this spring, underpinned by strong interest from offshore buyers.
Large-scale irrigation properties, grazing concerns and vineyards across south-eastern Australia are drawing interest from foreign purchasers, while other holdings are being snapped up by local farmers and mining interests, The Australian Financial Review reports.
The 1300-hectare grazing property Naringal Station in Victoria's western districts has sold for about $7.5 million to a local buyer, while Goodman Group chief executive Greg Goodman is selling Goonoo Goonoo Station near Tamworth for over $25 million to coalmining baron, and farmer, Tony Haggarty.
Meares and Associates chief executive Chris Meares said the market was being dominated by institutional buyers from Europe and the United States and private individuals from China.
"It's a two-speed market. The top end is going well, the middle and bottom end are struggling," he said.
His agency is marketing Deltroit Station at Wagga Wagga, which could fetch between $15 million and $18 million.
"We started the spring thinking it would be pretty tough and therefore we thought the only places we would proactively market were top-end properties. . . But there have been eight properties sold of substance in the last eight weeks," said Mr Meares.
The Australian Financial ReviewSource: http://www.afr.com