A long-term investment that we have made and have benefited from over the past twelve years is in the rural lands of central Texas. Historically, the value of land has increased over time, making it a viable long-term investment. To quote beloved comedian Will Rogers: “Buy land. They don’t do it anymore.” Land, like any other investment, fluctuates in value, but it is usually a solid investment over the long term. The ever-growing world population continues to increase. It makes sense that more food should be produced in order to feed the growing population. Land prices are expected to rise again soon, and it looks like now is a good time to invest in rural acreage before prices start to soar here in central Texas. Ultimately, as the world’s population grows, so will the demand for farm and ranch land. This was actually one of our deciding factors when choosing to invest in Central Texas ranch land. According to an article in the September 2011 issue of Realtor® Magazine, things are improving when it comes to farmland and cropland values in the United States. The future is bright for those who have land to sell and for those who are ready to buy.
You don’t have to be a real farmer or rancher in itself to own and make good use of your acreage. If, like us, you are not, you can quickly learn enough to run your own cow / calf farm or you can always rent out your property for grazing or cattle farming. You can immediately benefit from an exemption from agricultural property tax, better known as the “ag” exemption (significant reduction in property taxes – provided that the exemption is already in place when the property is acquired) without having to be on site at all times to operate your livestock or ranching operation. If a property does not have an agricultural exemption, one can be claimed. The “farm” exemption as well as the various tax benefits associated with owning a ranch have given us substantial tax relief over the years. On the flip side, just having a place in the country to get away from when city life is driving you crazy is reason enough to invest in Central Texas ranches or recreation grounds. When we first decided to purchase an acreage in the “Top of the Hill Country” of central Texas, Hamilton County, as a City Hideaway (DFW), our main plan was to find a location. recreation area where we could hunt, fish, and search for Indian artifacts and fossils. We knew that in order to maintain our farming exemption status, we had to do a little more than just play. So we bought a few cows to graze the pastures and rented our cultivated fields to a local farmer for grain production.
We have made considerable efforts to judiciously diversify our investments. Like many of you, for the majority of our working lives, our investment portfolio has consisted primarily of 401K and taxable market securities. But, over the past 20 years, we’ve added to our portfolio: several rental properties, a combined livestock / recreation ranch in central Texas (where we now live), a commercial construction company in Waco, TX and finally, a farm and ranch real estate company located in Cranfills Gap, TX. As seasoned professionals, we understand the importance of financial diversification. Looking back, however, our best overall investment has been the Central Texas Ranch. Our initial decision to invest in a rural central Texas property was made with the ultimate goal of “paying” for the future, but profiting from it. now. We realized that life is too short and unpredictable and we made our choice. Of course, stock market investments are essential to securing the future of our retirement, but they are long-term investments that cannot be enjoyed consistently. There is no guarantee that we will always be there to see the end result of all of our investments, but we are confident in our decisions – twelve years later, we have absolutely no regrets. Not only are we having a great time living in the country now, but we also have peace of mind knowing that we have secured our future with smart investments.
To help you find the rural property of your dreams – visit http://www.txbrandland.com