Westmeath was one of the counties where land supply held steady in 2020.

The total area put up for sale by landowners was 3,158ac, actually an increase of 25ac. Average price fell a little. It was €8,162/ac, a decrease of €316/ac.

The farms put up for sale were larger.

Fifty-one farms were offered on the market, which was down on the previous year’s 75.

Thirty-two of the 51 farms were under 40ac, 11 were 40ac to 99ac and the balance of eight were over 100ac.

This was one of the larger numbers of farms of over 100ac.

Twenty-two of the farms were residential, the other 29 were non-residential.

Private treaty

Private treaty was the most popular route to market for Westmeath landowners – 80% of the farms took this route.

Ten were offered by public auction and five of them sold under the hammer.

Thirty of the 51 farms offered on the market were successfully sold by year-end. The range in prices was from €3,333/ac to €17,500/ac. The premium for small holdings was not huge.

Average price for under 40ac was €8,787/ac and for over 40ac was €7,225/ac.

Total value

The total value of land sold in the county in 2020 was €20.5m.

The dominant buyers of land in the county were beef farmers and business people, as also seen in recent years.

One of the most high-profile holdings sold last year was Knockdrin Castle on 1,000ac at Crookedwood which sold at the close of the year by private treaty.

The purchasers were business people and the price is understood to have been close to the guide price of €10m or €10,000/ac.

The 100ac at Slanestown, Mullingar, was sold at auction for €965,000 or €9,650/ac.

Vital statistics

  • *Average: €8,162/ac
  • Acres offered: 3,158
  • Total number of farms: 51
  • Price range: €3,333/ac - €17,500/ac
  • Most active buyers: Beef/business
  • Weighted average: €8,429/ac
  • *Based on 30 transactions