For Sale: The First Farm in Durham in 2011

26th April 2011

With the value of farm land continuing to rise against declines seen in most other investments, George F White are pleased to announce the coming sale of their first County Durham farm for 2011. Moor Leazes Farm, near Lanchester, is an outstanding commercial arable farm with a modern farmhouse, buildings and 350 acres of arable, woodland and pasture. As the first of its kind this year, it is expected to attract considerable interest.

The modern farmhouse is traditionally built, with four bedrooms and comfortable living space of living room and conservatory, dining room, large farmhouse kitchen and farm office. The farm buildings comprise an excellent range of traditional and modern buildings which while suited to the current arable operation of the farm, have potential for other uses. The majority of the land is arable, with some pasture and woodland. The sporting rights are currently exercised and available with the property, and there is potential to develop this side of the property further.

The size of Moor Leazes Farm, its commercial attributes together with its location of only being 8 miles from Durham city make it an extremely attractive property and one that rarely becomes available in County Durham. Jonathan Wallis of George F White’s Wolsingham Office, says: “From pensioners to shareholders, most investors have seen the value of their assets continuing to decline. The stark exception is for the North East’s farmers and landowners. With commercial farmland seen as one of the most secure and safe forms of investment in the current climate, demand is outstripping supply and prices are expected to rise again this year.”

The rising level of land prices has been highest in Arable. According to a recent RICS Rural Land Market Survey, farmland prices in the North East reached a two year high in 2010 with arable farmland increasing to £5,750 per acre, and pasture to £4,025. Demand has been driven by private investors targeting the region as a good area to purchase viable units and also commercial farmers looking to capitalise on high commodity prices, keen to expand existing holdings and ensure the growth of their farming businesses.

Jonathan Wallis, from George F White’s County Durham offices believes that the spring may also see the end of lower interest rates in the market. “Now is an ideal time to take advantage of the low rates and tie into borrowing on fixed rate deals before inflation rises and cost of borrowing begins to creep up. There could be huge hole in the amount of cash available with some forecasting that the need for funds will outstrip those available by 2 to 1.”

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