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Farm Loans In Illinois – Tillable

Introduction

Farm sale prices are determined by a number of factors, two of which are the productivity (yield) and the rental income. If a farm is able to produce more bushels of corn or beans compared to the farm down the road from it, it is worth more when it comes time to sell. The same can be said about the rental income from a farm. If your farmer pays you a more competitive rent compared to farms in the area, the farm is worth more in a sale.

Illinois Average Corn Yield for 2021

Farmland in Illinois that sells for the highest price is more than likely the most productive land when discussing corn and soybean yields.  Here is a list of the top 10 counties in Illinois by corn yield (bushel per acre) in the 2021 growing season.

County State Year Commodity Average Value
1 Champaign Illinois 2021 Corn 222.4
2 Moultrie Illinois 2021 Corn 221.8
3 Macon Illinois 2021 Corn 221.1
4 Woodford Illinois 2021 Corn 220.2
5 Coles Illinois 2021 Corn 220
6 Christian Illinois 2021 Corn 218.6
7 Stark Illinois 2021 Corn 217.2
8 Sangamon Illinois 2021 Corn 215.6
9 Peoria Illinois 2021 Corn 215
10 Marshall Illinois 2021 Corn 214.5

Illinois Average Cash Rent for 2021 – $227

Illinois typically has some of the highest and most competitive cash rents for non-irrigated tillable row crop farmland in the Midwest.  The average cash rent earned throughout the state in 2021 was $227 an acre.  Below is a chart of the highest average cash rents by county.

2021 Non-Irrigated Cash Rent County Leaderboards

State County 2020 Avg. Cash Rent 2021 Avg. Cash Rent
1 Illinois Macon $294 $311
2 Illinois Moultrie $284 $297
3 Illinois Piatt $281 $297
4 Illinois Logan $287 $291
5 Illinois Sangamon $292 $280
6 Illinois Christian $272 $278
7 Illinois Menard $260 $278
8 Illinois De Witt $266 $275
9 Illinois Champaign $274 $270
10 Illinois Carroll $264 $268

When landowners and farmers calculate cash rent, one common method is the Return on Investment (ROI) approach.  In this method:  Rent = Value of Land/Acre X ROI (~2.5% – 4%)

Here is an example of the ROI method:

Rent = $1,000,000/100 acre X 3%
Rent = $10,000 X 3% (0.03)
Rent = $300 per acre.

What this means:  If land has traditionally been under-rented compared to its potential yield productivity (bushels per acre) it can lower the overall value (price per acre) of a farm in the event of a sale.  This is why it is crucial to track cash rent and evaluate it compared to the productivity of the farm and track soil testing and nutrient application.

Illinois Average Soil Productivity (PI) – 110 CPI

Illinois has some of the best soil in the world, let alone the Midwest.  Central Illinois and North Central Illinois farmland are home to the best soil productivity in the state.  Prime agricultural land classes (Class A, Class B, and Class C) soil types can be categorized as follows:

Class A:  133-147 CPI

Class B:  117-132

Class C:  100-116 

Soil ratings equal to or below 99 on the CPI are not classified as prime agricultural land.

Here are the top 10 Counties by average soil PI in Illinois:

County State Crop Productivity Index
1 Piatt Illinois 135
2 Macon Illinois 134
3 Champaign Illinois 133
4 DeKalb Illinois 133
5 Logan Illinois 131
6 McLean Illinois 131
7 Douglas Illinois 130
8 LaSalle Illinois 129
9 Woodford Illinois 129
10 Kendall Illinois 128

Illinois Average Farm Sales – 2021 – $11,394/acre

As one might suspect, the counties with the highest average yields, cash rent, and soil productivity are the highest counties in the state for average sale prices for farmland.  All of these extremely important pieces of data about farmland go hand-in-hand.  Illinois is known for its renowned soils and agricultural production and this is reflected in the land sale values.  The average sale price for the top 10 counties in Illinois in 2021 was $11,394/acre.  Below is a chart showing the top 10 counties for average sale prices for farms in Illinois in 2021.

County Sold Year Median Price per Acre Total Acres
1 Kane 2021 15,821.21 5,064.79
2 Macon 2021 11,515.15 3,021.12
3 Marshall 2021 11,433.23 4,406.59
4 Champaign 2021 11,305.305 12,831.15
5 Woodford 2021 11,236.38 4,579.40
6 Sangamon 2021 11,000 8,891.99
7 De Witt 2021 10,654.76 4,221.90
8 DeKalb 2021 10,405.595 9,385.65
9 McLean 2021 10,325.905 15,110.97
10 Ford 2021 10,251.24 4,503.23

Farm Loans in Illinois

With all of this data about yield, cash rent, soil, and sale prices, the next step in one’s journey in farmland ownership and investment is, “how do I pay for it if it is such a valuable asset?”  Farm mortgages are very common when investing in farmland or expanding your operation.  Unlike home mortgages, farm mortgages typically require 25%-35% of the purchase price of the farm as a down payment.  This can also be represented as a Loan-to-Value ratio.  Now, if you already own farmland with equity, you are able to pledge farmland as collateral for the new farm purchase which can lower the amount required for a down payment. 

If you are ready to purchase your next farm you can explore our farm mortgage rates here and get a decision in 15 minutes without ever having to go to the bank and fill out pages upon pages of paperwork for an approval.

Found the farmland you are interesting in purchasing?

Now find your loan partner that will make it a reality. Get approved in seconds with an all digital application from Tillable, who will work with you to make sure you get the best rates possible.

Related Resources

Guide to Farmland Valuation

Considering selling your farmland but don’t know its true value? Our guide helps any landowner who is considering selling their farm in 2021.

Farmland Interest Rate Volatility

As of last Wednesday, the Federal Reserve (the Central Bank of the United States) has again raised interest rates 75 basis points, or three-quarters of a percentage point.

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