A New Way to Evaluate Farmland
October 30, 2015
Finding the right land at the right price is something our customers talk about often, and understandably so – in today’s market, the ability to access new land on favorable terms is a huge source of competitive advantage. As some of you may know, back in April we launched a test version of our farmland analysis site, AcreValue, in 3 states (Iowa, Illinois and Indiana) and we quickly learned from our customers that easy access to this data is invaluable to assessing new ground and negotiating rates on existing ground. So we’ve been spending the last six months dramatically redesigning and expanding AcreValue nationally to make it awesome and more complete, not just for farmers, but also for landowners, investors, bankers, brokers and other industry professionals. The new and expanded AcreValue is finally here.
One of AcreValue’s most important features is its Automated Valuation Model (AVM), the first AVM specifically built for the agriculture industry. AcreValue’s AVM analyzes terabytes of public data about farmland to automatically estimate the value of each field (you can think of Zillow’s “Zestimate” as a relevant example). While we will never be able to fully predict what a parcel of land will trade for, we want to help professionals in the market have an unbiased starting point, and to be able to easily compare across different parcels.
Before joining the team at AcreValue, I helped develop web and mobile products for the 50 million home shoppers using Trulia every month for their home search. Trulia was the first site to bring together home listings, comparable sales, crime maps, school ratings and other neighborhood info so that you could do all of your research in one place. What excites me about AcreValue is bringing together all of the critical data about farmland into a single site, a one-stop shop. AcreValue is not only the first to bring farmland data together in a single site, but to also offer a simple and intuitive user interface and to make the data accessible for free. There is no shortage of public data around farmland – parcel boundaries, characteristics about soils, expected productivity ratings, crop history, yield history, sales, etc. The problem is that this data, up until now, had been hard to find, hard to collect, and hard to summarize.
Visit AcreValue, play around and let us know what you think.
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