A flurry of rural sales activity could be on the way, as the sale of a significant Central Hawke's Bay farm brings an end to a slow autumn period for farm sales.

Data released yesterday by the Real Estate Institute (REINZ) shows nationally there were just more farm sales (+0.8 per cent) for the three months ended October 2018 than for the three months ended October 2017.

Overall, there were 263 farm sales in the three months ended October 2018, compared to 250 farm sales for the three months ended September 2018 (+5.2 per cent), and 261 farm sales for the three months ended October 2017.

"Hawke's Bay was reasonably quiet on dairy but activity being registered on good finishing and grazing properties where attendance at open days is steady; one quality deer farm in Central Hawke's Bay attracted very good interest and sold well," REINZ rural spokesman Brian Peacocke said.


PGG Wrightson rural sales consultant Doug Smith said more activity could be expected following the significant recent sale of the Tahuna intensive cropping farm, which had been placed on the market by Hastings-based farming investment company Rural Equities.

"The sale of Tahuna drew plenty of interest. This is a large, predominantly flat property which is operated as a mixed livestock and cropping unit, but with several farming options, carrying around 5500 stock units.

"After a deadline private treaty process that attracted solid attention and competition, it sold in early November to a local farming family. Tahuna changed hands for between $14,000 and $15,000 per hectare, firm on recent values for similar local properties," he said.

Smith said the final sale price was confidential.

Rural Equities 2018 Annual Report listed the farm as being run under leased management of a 580ha area. That would make the sale worth at least $8 million.

Smith said Tahuna's sale could prompt other Hawke's Bay sheep and beef properties to sell this summer, with PGG Wrightson having three decent sized farms on the market in Hawke's Bay - ranging in size from 200ha to 300ha.

"We have several additional listings on our books at present, and more coming on, so this appears to be the start of a busy period for the local market. Lamb and beef schedules, the currency and interest rates are all favourable for those farming red meat.

"For anyone considering selling a farm, now is an excellent time to pass property onto the next generation, giving a new owner the chance to make a positive start with it."