The Value of Having Wealth “Tied to the Land”

By: Tyler Jacobs

What does it mean to be “tied to the land”?

Once you have sold farms and ranches for 20 years and enjoyed much of the same lifestyle yourself, there are certain observations and conclusions that are easy to come by. Our past and current clients are all “tied to the land” in some way, whether it is by their hard work or by their investment in the land.

One of my favorite men of the past generation is Will Rogers, and I think he put it best when he said, “What the country needs is dirtier fingernails and cleaner minds.” The virtues of dirty fingernails generally apply to those that are responsible for the production or care of something else.


For most people, owning farm and ranchland involves them as a steward and caretaker. Your tree fell on the neighbor’s fence, so someone needs to know how to run the chainsaw. When it’s time to ship the calves, somebody must be responsible for the cut gate. Somebody is prepared to help that first-calf heifer. Somebody will have to clean up the turn row and fill the planter. Sounds like pretty simple stuff, but the virtues of the knowledge, problem-solving skills, and appreciation from tending to farm or ranch land are in high demand.


These skills can be exponentially leveraged in life decisions outside of land stewardship or agrarian economies. I have a friend and a client that was required by his parents to graduate with an agriculture production degree, further his education with an MBA, and do post-graduate work in ranch management before he could go to into the family business of investment banking. Firm handshakes, hard work, reaping what you sow, and living with failure are certainly virtues better taught on the family ranch than at Harvard.


I am grateful to have my kids “tied to the land” and learn these valuable lessons, as I know they will serve them well, whether it is on the ranch or in the boardroom. Accordingly, one of the ideas we promote significantly within the partnership is the terminology of “Investment Quality Rural Real Estate”, or the simple idea that placing or leveraging wealth into farm and ranch land can serve as an investment vehicle.


Will Rogers also used to say, “Don’t wait to buy land, buy land and wait.” Many of our clients are motivated to build a legacy for the next generation through the purchase of a farm or ranch that is less “liquid” of an asset than other investments. Patience, land improvement, long-term appreciation, and the cyclical nature of real estate all serve to educate the next generation’s investment principles. Having wealth “tied to the land” brings mature balance to a youthful worldview that is accustomed to instant gratification.


Impact of Natural Disasters on Texas Farm & Ranch Market

After a natural disaster or catastrophe, such as a hurricane, farm and ranch real estate markets in the impacted area typically pause for a period of time. Tyler Jacobs of Hall and Hall explains on “Texas News and Views” a radio program by Texas Farm Bureau.

Texas Hill Country, a Land Rush for the Rich

The Wall Street Journal just published an interesting article entitled, “Texas Hill Country, a Land Rush for the Rich,” detailing how a new wave affluent buyers are seeking luxury ranch getaways in remote central Texas.

An excerpt reads:

“Today’s settlers are reshaping the landscape in their own way, building modern getaways with little interest in herding cattle or growing crops. These newcomers are attracted to the remote, rural lifestyle within distance of cosmopolitan cities. Retirees from across the U.S. often relocate here for an active lifestyle and low cost of living relative to many other states. And while there’s still a strong cowboy vibe, there are plenty of cultural offerings and some creative fare for foodies.” 

Here is a list of our Texas ranches for sale, including Calohan Creek Ranch, Lucky Star Ranch, Lucky P Ranch, and more.

texas ranch for sale, wall street journal, texas homes


Bloomberg Features $725 Million Waggoner Texas Ranch for Sale

Our longtime Partner Jim Taylor is featured in a lengthy Bloomberg story about The Waggoner Ranch, a Texas ranch for sale featuring more than 1,000 oil wells, 6,800 head of cattle, 30,000 acres of cropland being offered for $725 million.


An excerpt from the Bloomberg story reads:

 ”According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Texas pastureland last year sold for $1,580 an acre—up 9 percent from 2013 and $160 an acre more than the ranch’s $1,420. Overall, the U.S. ranch market has been robust the past two years as beef prices have risen and investors have sought havens that offer appreciation as well as income, says Jim Taylor of Hall & Hall, a rural real estate firm based in Billings, Montana, and Denver.

Taylor says the Waggoner valuation seems aggressive. Assuming smart investors won’t risk more than 10 percent of their net worth, “you’re looking for people with a net worth of $7 billion or $8 billion,” he says. “Then you’ve got to find somebody that not only wants to own a ranch but an oil-and-gas business. The only person out there would be maybe somebody who would buy it with the idea of taking it apart.”

Click here to see other Texas ranches for sale.


Texas Ranches For Sale: Hall and Hall Expands Services

Hall and Hall has always been dedicated to representing the owners and prospective owners of investment-quality rural real estate wherever it is found. As part of that dedication to our business, we have expanded our services in Texas beyond our mortgage lending and servicing business to offer Texas ranches for sale.

As the second-largest state in the union, home of some of the finest farms and ranches in the world and home to some of our most entrepreneurial people, Texas is a place where Hall and Hall belongs.

Over the past several years, Hall and Hall has expanded its presence in the Kansas and Oklahoma markets and has added a successful real estate auction group. These expansions have led to additional opportunities in Texas including our being asked to auction the famous Camp Cooley Ranch two years ago. This was a true “barn burner” and the deal was recognized as the “Deal of the Year” by The Land Report Magazine. This firmed up our resolve to offer the traditional farm & ranch brokerage services that have been our stock in trade for over 65 years.

As it happened, we already had a presence in Texas through our loan office in Lubbock where Monte Lyons – a born and bred Texan – had been making and servicing mortgage loans on farms and ranches for over 28 years – most recently under the Hall and Hall banner. We had not realized the depth of Monte’s talents until we saw him in action working with prospective buyers before, during and after our Texas and Oklahoma farm auctions. Monte understands the market and knows farming and ranching intimately. He brings a level of credibility, both personally and because of his loan underwriting and agricultural property evaluation background, that very few ranch brokers can offer. We are pleased to announce that he has agreed to lead our real estate operations in Texas. Hall and Hall will continue to maintain a lending and management presence in the market.

We offer to the Texas market what we have traditionally brought to other markets. We bring a “rolodex” (or database in modern parlance) built from nearly 70 years of being in the selling, lending and management business nationally and internationally. During the life of our company, we have worked hard to maintain a reputation for honesty and fair dealing and for offering advice and counsel to our friends and clients. We believe we have been successful in that effort and, as a result, what we bring to the table is the ability to reach a worldwide market with investment grade properties. This is an audience that listens to us and trusts us to bring them the best because we have had a long history of doing just that and, through our management division, looking after our clients after they have purchased a ranch or farm. We believe that traditional values, long term relationships spanning generations and the latest in technology and marketing techniques will play in Texas as well as it has played throughout the Rockies and Great Plains. Monte can be reached at [email protected] or 806.698.6882.

Optimism Renewed: Texas Ranches For Sale

By: Monte Lyons

The drought of 2011 in Texas and surrounding states took a toll.  An economic toll that is difficult to measure depending on what level of the food chain you operate and your enterprise(s).   Farmers, ranchers, input suppliers, grain handlers, etc. all suffered to varying degrees.  In some cases, insurance or other enterprises mitigated the financial loss.  Nevertheless, farmers, ranchers and agribusiness people are producers who are geared to produce and not producing is hard on producers.  The drought took a mental toll on just about everyone involved in producing, financing and processing food and fiber.  Just the reminder that “it can happen” to such an extreme degree will affect all kinds of decisions for at least a generation. [Read more...]