The Texas land market is seeing strong demand for rural properties, and with a lack of inventory to sell, prices are rising, according to Texas A&M research economist Charles Gilliland of the Texas Real Estate Research Center.
In 2021, there were 9,055 total sales of rural land, compared to 7,684 total sales in 2020. This marked an increase of 17.8%, despite a fourth quarter with 953 fewer sales than the same period in 2020, Gilliland said.
“The first part of 2020 was the start of COVID, so it was really quiet for the second quarter. But the third and fourth quarters were active like never before, and that continued into 2021 throughout the year,” he said. “From this third quarter of 2020 until now, there has been tremendous demand for rural land across the state and across the country.”
In the fourth quarter of 2021, Texas recorded 1,283 rural land sales, which was significantly lower than the 2,236 sales in the fourth quarter of 2020, according to the rural land market expert. Gilliland said the first theory as to why there were so many sales at the end of 2020 and into 2021 was because people were moving out of town and into rural communities due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It wasn’t fun living in the cities anymore because all the fun things were closed. People found they could work from anywhere if they had a mass internet connection,” Gilliland said. “So that got the ball rolling, and then they were joined by investors who are looking for a place to invest funds that they think are safe. We’ve just had a flood of people with different types of motivations who are interested in buying land.