The competitive auction sales of two mixed grazing properties in the NSW Southern Tablelands region have highlighted strong demand for existing farming families seeking expansion opportunities.
CBRE’s Agribusiness team negotiated the sales of Billabong and Yarra, both of which are located in the Yass district.
Billabong sold under the hammer for $5.825m while Yarra was knocked down for $1.375m - with both properties selling for prices well above initial expectations.
Billabong is a productive 907 hectare (2,240 acre) mixed grazing property set 33km north of Yass on the eastern edge of the renowned South West Slopes region. It was listed for sale through CBRE’s Col Medway and Richie Inglis after being held in the same family ownership since 1935.
The property includes a mix of improved and native perennial pastures and provides the opportunity for a combination of cropping and grazing enterprises. It offers 5.5 kilometres of Boorowa River frontage, working improvements and a homestead set in established gardens.
In front of a packed auction room, bidding rose quickly from an opening bid of $4.5m to the eventual sale price of $5.825m – 27% above the reserve price and equivalent to a rate of $2,600 per acre.
The flexibility of the Billabong enterprise was a key attraction – with the property equally suited to sheep, cattle and mixed farming.
“With the new varieties of canola and wheat, the crop can be grazed as well as locked up for grain recovery. The profitability of that system is compelling,” Mr Medway said.
The purchasers were Chris & Gina Grubb of Sydney, who were represented by Jon Harpley from Growth Farms.
While the Grubbs are first time agribusiness investors, Mr Medway said the buyer interest in Billabong had been dominated by existing farming families looking for expansion opportunities.
It was a similar story for Yarra, a productive 281 hectare mixed grazing property set on the western edge of the r Southern Tablelands Region in the Binalong district.
The property was sold at auction through CBRE’s Mr Medway and Trish Brewer to local family Kim and Roxanne Henderson
The Hendersons own the nearby Yass property Grogansworth, home to the Grogansworth Merino Stud. They outbid another local family to acquire Yarra at a price which reflects $2,000 an acre – a rate which Mr Medway said was a benchmark for native grazing country.
“This demonstrates how local families are looking for expansion properties. The appetite for property in the $1m to $2m range is very strong because of the number of people looking to play in this market,” Mr Medway said.
Under current management, Yarra has supported an enviable stocking rate and reaped the benefits of a sustainable conservation program.
With funding from Land Care, Yarra is in the process of being further improved with a focus on fencing off degraded areas and the establishment of trees and shrubs as natural wind breaks and soil stabilisers. Native corridors will subdivide existing paddocks enhancing grazing management and pasture utilisation while lowering mortality rates.
Both Yarra and Billabong are also tipped to benefit from the soon to open South Eastern Livestock Exchange at Yass, which will provide outstanding marketing opportunities for lambs, sheep and cattle, with minimal freight expenditure.
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CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Los Angeles, is the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm (based on 2015 revenue). The Company has more than 70,000 employees (excluding affiliates), and serves real estate investors and occupiers through more than 400 offices (excluding affiliates) worldwide. CBRE offers a broad range of integrated services, including facilities, transaction and project management; property management; investment management; appraisal and valuation; property leasing; strategic consulting; property sales; mortgage services and development services. Please visit our website at www.cbre.com.