There was no stopping the record prices being paid for farms across Victoria in 2022.
The supply of properties for sale was well down on the previous record year but this only spurred buyers to pay record prices for fear they would miss out.
A continued run of good seasons coupled with high commodity prices and historically low interest rates, saw neighbours battling it out to add to their farm footprint.
Victoria in particular saw a number of pioneering families choosing to cash in their long-held land at the height of the market.
February, just after harvest, is not known as a big selling time but 318 hectares of cropping land near Kaniva in the west of the state quickly changed those thoughts.
A packed house watched in almost disbelief as a district record price of $11,000 an acre was paid for premium cropping country on the Victorian-South Australian border.
The Lillimur block of 785 acres sold to competing neighbours for $7.85 million.
The spotlight stayed on western Victoria with two farm blocks selling at auction near Horsham for record prices in April.
About 100 people attended the sale for two pieces of land at Noradjuha, just to the south-west of Horsham.
First up was 185ha (457 acres) at Didi-Bahini which sold to a neighbour for a record $12,500 an acre.
Just as the crowd was digesting that result, Lowan Estate's 129ha (319 acres) also sold to a neighbour for another record of $14,700 per acre.
No wonder the crowd was stunned, almost $10.5 million had just changed hands for 776 acres.
Elders Horsham manager Mathew Taylor later said: "It's not often you see something like that."
Moving forward into the prime selling season, ASX-listed fund manager Duxton Farms bought Piambie Farms near Swan Hill for an all-up price of $9 million in September.
Duxton Farms agreed to buy one farm and lease a second across a combined 1183 hectares (2923 acres). That second farm came with a later purchase option valuing the land at $3079 per acre.
A piggery near Bridgewater sold for better than expectations of above $1.2 million.
An unusual lifestyle choice, the former Windermere Primary School near Ballarat, sold at auction for $475,000.
Deserted schools, halls and churches are the latest focus for renovators looking for a cheap home in the country.
Buyers are being forced to be more creative because of the lack of homes for sale across rural Australia.
But a better lifestyle sale was to come in September when the owner of a nondescript block of rocky grazing land near Bendigo won the jackpot.
A buyer paid $12,439 for each of its 201 acres - a grand total of $2.5 million.
No house just two paddocks, four dams and some sheds on 81 undulating hectares but importantly on two titles.
The best priced lifestyle block was for a small farm of 220 acres near Hanging Rock.
Darrandeen II made $3.6 million or $16,363 per acre although the outlay was less to do with agricultural pursuits than the opportunities for subdivision.
In the north-east, former concretor Laurie McDonald made a better than expected $2,225,000 at auction for his off-the-grid 60ha block overlooking the Ovens River.
A handy sized grain farm sold for $2850 an acre at a Swan Hill auction in October.
A 510ha (1260 acre) Wood Wood farm went under the hammer, sown to wheat across its four large paddocks, and sold for a total price of $3,588,150.
Later the same month, five bidders competed for some tightly held cropping country near Lalbert, south of Swan Hill.
All up, buyers paid $3.14 million for 774 hectares on three blocks sown to wheat and barley at the public auction held at the Lalbert footy ground, realising $2625 per acre.
A former dairy offered by the estate of David and Faye Tanner near Wangaratta (68ha, 168 acres) sold at auction for $2.2 million with a third block under offer.
The total sale price was about $3.5 million, after negotiation.
An astonishing $10,775 an acre was been paid for grazing land in the south-west of Victoria in October.
Three lots for the Seymour Park Aggregation at Heywood were put up for an online auction across almost a thousand acres of prime grazing country near Portland.
The stellar $10,775 an acre price was paid for the first lot called Freds taking in 163 hectares (404 acres).
More than $6 million was paid for a long-held East Gippsland farm near Stratford which had been put on the market for the first time in almost 140 years.
John Boyd's family farm sold to a near neighbour who is adding the 573 hectare (1416 acre) block to their existing holding after paying around $10,471 per acre.
The Ridd's block near Stawell sold for $8550 an acre, making $7.37 million.
Noonameena (267 hectares, 660 acres) sold for a stellar $5,225,000 at auction at Dookie in November.
At the fall of the hammer, the price paid for Ken Gall's highly regarded mixed farm realised $7917 per acre.
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