Why You Should Invest in Rural Property

July 1, 2020

When it comes to real estate investment, many people have dreamed their entire lives of owning a large rural property in the Rocky Mountain West.  Of all the rural property options in America, Montana offers some of the best for productivity, return on investment, recreation and privacy.  Here at 18 Land Company we would like to help you, as a prospective buyer, understand the rural property options available and why investing in them makes good sense.

As owners of large properties ourselves, we’ve learned to view the purchase of a farm or ranch as a long-term property investment and to segregate that investment from the day to day agricultural operations taking place on the property.  By doing this, the landowner is able to enjoy the property for its recreational or scenic value and treat the enhancement of those attributes as a separate business from the ag production side of ownership.  Many of the large properties in our area that have high quality scenery, fishing, hunting and live water have seen up to 15% in land value appreciations per year the last 10 years.

On the ag production side of rural property ownership, profitability can be more difficult to achieve but is not impossible.  Most agriculture products that come from Montana farms and ranches are commodity products.  This means the producer is selling his livestock and crops into a market where he or she will have very little control over the price they receive.  Fortunately, the producer can control their costs of operation in many ways and through good management they should be profitable in most years.

Another important reason that many people purchase a large rural property is for the means to create a family legacy.  A beautiful Montana ranch with expansive views and abundant outdoor recreational opportunities is a great place for multiple generations of a family to gather together and enjoy all the recreation the property has to offer.  If that owner plans to work the ranch themselves, there are few things more rewarding than seeing what you’ve accomplished every day working alongside your family members.  Through proper estate planning, that property can be passed down to later generations and will create a legacy for the family that can last for years upon years.

With the growth in population in some of the larger towns in western Montana, such as Bozeman or Missoula, we’re noticing more demand and pressure on publicly accessible fishing, hunting and recreation areas.  Like the saying goes, “it’s not like it was in the old days,” which has led to a poorer quality of outdoor experience in some of these areas.  This has caused many people to consider making a rural property investment to create private land recreational opportunities in which they control who has access and what happens on the property.  As was mentioned earlier, this also creates an opportunity to enhance some of the recreational attributes of the property.  Stream work, pond construction, habitat enhancement and livestock grazing management are a few of the things a landowner can invest in to improve the fishing, hunting or bird watching on their property.

Owning a rural property in Montana can provide the owner with a significant amount of safety.  As Americans, we currently find ourselves in strange and unnerving circumstances.  With the spread of coronavirus and the unrest occurring in many of our urban areas, many people are looking for a way to escape the cities and relocate their families to a quieter and safer place.  While many people in urban areas have found themselves in lockdowns that severely limited their daily activities, in rural Montana most things have remained somewhat normal.  We have plenty of space so we can maintain social distancing while we continue to enjoy our work and recreation outdoors.  Our rural towns are typically small, quiet and very safe where people know each other and take care of their neighbors.

Another plus in owning a rural property is the freedom that is afforded to the owner.  Most large farms and ranches create opportunities for the owner to make decisions about what happens on that land.  If the owner makes informed and responsible decisions, they can see great improvements in the production and value of that property as well as the level of enjoyment they will receive from that ownership.

Even when a prospective buyer of a large rural property has made the decision to pursue the purchase of that property, they are often overwhelmed by the details of ownership that come along with it.  This is where 18 Land Company can help.  After the purchase, if the new owner wishes, we are willing to offer our services based upon our expertise in livestock, crops, grazing leases and water management. We can also connect you with people that specialize in everything from accounting to fisheries enhancement.

At 18 Land Company, we want to help people find the right property and give them the tools to enjoy that property for years to come.

If you have questions or would like help navigating a large land transaction, give Keith or Nate a call at 406-988-0055 or tell us more by using the form on our Contact page.

For additional information on our land and ranch management support, we invite you to visit our Land Concierge services.