Predictions for a buoyant year

PRICES for premium farms and estates in the region will remain strong next year with continued demand from abroad, says land agency firm Strutt & Parker.

Investment interests in farms and estates have sustained a very buoyant market in 2011 and early forecasts suggest current momentum will continue in 2012.

Claire Whitfield, head of estates and farms in the north of England for Strutt & Parker, said: “Many premium farms and estates in Northumberland, the Borders and Yorkshire have risen in value by between 10 per cent and 14 per cent in the last year and the region has seen several diverse properties enter the market.”

A highlight of the year was the launch of the Castle Heaton and Shellacres estate, a 1200-acre sporting estate in the north of Northumberland, which attracted interest from all over the world. On the market for offers over £11.5million, it went under offer after a competitive closing date.

Mrs Whitfield said: “Next year, we are likely to see continued, if not increased, investment in the land market from foreign as well as city investors as the UK continues to be seen as a safe haven for investment away from the turmoil in Europe.

“Far Eastern investors are now increasingly interested in UK property and I do not think it will be long before their new-found love of field sports leads to sporting estates being put on their shopping lists alongside mansions in Belgravia.

“Overall, I anticipate a strong and buoyant year in the farms and estates market. I do not expect to see big price rises in the short term but they will remain steady and continued demand can only fuel an already blossoming and diverse land market.”