THE UNCERTAINTIES of Brexit caused a perception that prices, especially land, had fallen.

However, I would argue that in recent years, the market has been good or at the very least stable; this may largely be as a result of shortages. as sellers have been hesitant due to the feeling of uncertainty, ensuring that what property is on the market is scarcer than ever.

A comment on the effect that the Coronavirus will have on property prices at present is a little futuristic, however, it is important to look for positives, and certainly the outbreak highlights the security of land as an investment, compared to other markets, and the low interest rates may make borrowing an attractive proposition. Whereas in terms of residential property, it is certainly evident from our own enquires and recent deals, that there is a new and extreme demand for rural residential property, be it to Buy or to Let. Lockdown, in the urban areas, has brought forward thoughts about one day moving to the country and home working has been shown to be very possible.

Aside from a rural property, what are the purchasers looking for? The farmer purchaser typically looks at the productivity of the holding,often ignoring the dwelling, and with the nature of subsidies in doubt, they are cautious.

Farmers are looking for farms of an optimum size and/or land located close to their existing business; therefore, if farms are deemed as too small by modern standards, they can be difficult to sell.

It is at this point when lotting may be considered, with the option of tapping into the buoyant smallholder lifestyle market. I would suggest that no matter how tempting lotting is, it should only be done if truly feasible, as it can detract from the sale if not, with individualised values being open to scrutiny.

The question is, in so far as rural update, where are we now?

As a country, more so than a sector, we are in uncertain times and it is not the time to be making political gains, however, the opportunities, or rather the reminders presented by Coronavirus, should not be missed.

The importance of production, food security and the merits of British produce should not be allowed to be lost on the policy makers.

Whilst the change presented by Brexit remains unknown, we have now all been forced to change.

The changes we have all made have shown us, as individuals, to be adaptable. It is this adaptability and willingness to do so which will be essential for all rural businesses as they navigate the new normal post Covid-19 and beyond.