Sibling Rivalries Heat-up When Selling Land

Words become Daggers:

2022 was the year that siblings & their extended families gathered around the table to make the difficult decision of selling their family farm. For some families these discussions are easy, but for others, heated exchanges can turn words into daggers’, e.g. “all you want is the money”  – “that’s easy for you to say, you don’t need the money” or “we’re the ones that have to take care of the place.” If your family is in the latter group, don’t be alarmed, you’re not alone, and cooler heads generally prevail. However, the annual holiday gathering might not be the most appropriate time to bring it up, LOL.

In 2022 a record number of my clients, some of whom I’ve been in discussions with for years, agreed the timing was right and they pulled the trigger. Many used the auction approach and were rewarded with sale prices above expectations.

Here’s a short list of the most common reasons clients gave for selling farms in 2022:

  1. Aging Baby Boomers choosing to sell before the challenge passes to the next generation (absolutely, the number one reason)
  2. High sale prices, sellers market, hard to resist
  3. Fear of interest rates increases impacting future sale prices
  4. Benefit of using the  Step-up Basis benefit following recent inheritance
  5. Possible future elimination of 1031 exchange benefit
  6. Owners long-time farmer retiring so its a good time sell (this is more common that a lot of people might think)

So what does the future hold? For the reasons listed, I don’t see the trend changing as we turn the page to 2023. Most “Boomers” don’t want their children to inherit a challenging situation, sale prices are incredibly strong, and so far, I’ve seen minimal or no impact from interest rate increases.

If your family is on the fence trying to decide how to proceed, give me a call. I’m happy to join a family conference call to discuss the best time to sell, property valuation, the best approach auction or traditional listing, 1031 exchange and how it works, step-up basis, or help answer any other questions.

Author: Dennis Prussman

Dennis is considered one of the nation’s top land agents. In 2021, he ranked number 3 nationwide in total land sales, with $46 Million sold. His experience includes thirty years of Internet advertising with a focus on real estate. view listings:, social media:

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