National Land Realty, the nation’s fastest growing real estate land brokerage company specializing in farm, ranch, country estate, timber, recreational, and commercial development properties, released its first annual land real estate agent and broker survey.

Key findings show that there was a significant positive impact on the rural land real estate sector in 2020 with more than half of all respondents experiencing an increase in their business over 2019. And more than 60 percent seeing an increase in land values, especially recreational land, and farmland.

READ MORE: Here’s the outlook for land and housing in 2021

“Investors rediscovered a safe haven in land real estate in 2020, which made for a very good year for land sales, with record-breaking volume in the second half of the year,” said Jason Walter, CEO of National Land. “And with all of the traumatic events of 2020, people are looking to not only invest in land outside of the city, but they are also wanting to live on the land they buy, to be able to breathe the fresh COVID-free air and reconnect with the great outdoors.”

“2020 was a strong year for land and 2021 is looking to start out the same way. In fact, almost 90 percent of our brokers are optimistic that land will do quite well over the next year to 18 months,” said Jason Burbage, President of National Land Realty. “And more than 75 percent of them believe their business will grow at least five percent, if not more than 10 percent in that same timeframe.”

Key Survey Takeaways:

Business, Land Values During COVID-19 Pandemic  

• During the pandemic, almost 22 percent of brokers experienced a significant increase in business, while 33.6 percent saw some increase. 25 percent saw no change.

• Overall, respondents said that land values increased somewhat (60.9 percent) or significantly (five percent) during the pandemic. And 29 percent saw no change.

• Last year, respondents saw recreational land increase the most (50.9 percent), followed by farmland (18 percent).

• In terms of percentage of change, Land values overall have increased between 1-5 percent (44.5 percent), 6-10 percent (20 percent) and more than 10 percent (9 percent).

Outlook for 2021 Optimistic   

• More than 83 percent of agents are optimistic or somewhat optimistic about land real estate’s performance over the next 12-18 months.

• 26 percent believe their business will grow by more than 10 percent over that same timeframe, while 26 percent think it’ll grow between 6-10 percent. And almost 24 percent say their business will grow as much as five percent.

Majority of Buyers Coming from Urban or Suburban Areas  

• Current buyers are coming from urban or suburban areas.12.7 percent from major metro areas like Atlanta, 25.4 percent from smaller metro areas like Austin and 29 percent from the burbs.

Challenges in 2021  

• Biggest challenges facing the land real estate industry are geopolitical risk (23.6 percent), financing or interest rate risk (20 percent), and COVID related issues (17 percent).

The entire survey results can be viewed here.