The supply of farmland in Wicklow dropped sharply in 2020 and there was a modest increase in prices to €9,879/ac.

The number of farms sold was 18, down from 27 the year before. The total area of land put on the market was 796ac, little more than half of the 1,423ac offered in 2019.

Supply also fell in 2019.

Private treaty was the favoured route to market, with 14 of the 18 holdings put up for sale this way. Three were offered by auction and all sold under the hammer.

One holding was offered by tender.

Eleven of the 18 farms put on the market were successfully sold by year-end. The range in prices was from €5,200/ac to €18,028/ac. There was quite a premium for the smaller holdings. Average price for under 40ac was €10,634/ac while for the over 40ac holdings it was €8,972.

The overall average of €9,879/ac was an increase of €466/ac on 2019.

Land prices in Wicklow are still quite a way behind the recent peak of €16,728/ac that was seen in 2014.

Business buyers

Business buyers have dominated the Wicklow land market in recent years. Last year, uniquely, all of the farm sales recorded in our survey feature business buyers.

The category includes investors and others whose incomes are mainly earned off-farm, including part-time farmers with significant off farm income.

The value of all land sold was €5.1m.

The three farms that sold at auction did well. The 113ac Ballintombay Lower at Rathdrum sold for €990,000 or €8,761/ac.

The 77ac Ballyorley Lower at Ferns sold for €1.12m or €14,545/ac. The 13.59ac Kenny’s Field at Killacloran made €245,000 or €18,027/ac.

Vital statistics

  • *Average: €9,879/ac
  • Acres offered: 796
  • Total number of farms: 18
  • Price range: €5,200/ac - €18,028/ac
  • Most active buyers: Business
  • Weighted average: €9,199/ac
  • *Based on 11 transactions