Our blog will help keep you informed about news and information related to the farm, ranch and rural real estate markets. If you share our desire for wide open spaces and investment in the land, we hope you will subscribe, read and discuss the stories we find and develop here. More than just an investment, ranch, farm and rural real estate evokes a type of lifestyle that was born over a century ago and still provides a certain romance and passion for those who embrace the pioneering spirit from those days gone by.

TSCRA Cattle Raisers Convention Update

The TSCRA Cattle Raisers Convention was a tremendous success. The Hall and Hall expo booth was attended by Monte Lyons, Taylor Yeates, Tyler Jacobs and John Wildin and visited by both existing clients and future customers of every generation. We were proud to display and engage with visitors on many of our best ranches from across all of our markets. The conference was well-attended by those drawn to the great presentations from speakers such as Donnell Brown and Randy Blach. Hall and Hall was once again privileged to be the Matador Sponsor of the Texas Tech University CASNR alumni reception. It was a great event and continues to grow every year.
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Montana Trout Fishing Season is Looking GOOD!

To quote Explore Big Sky columnist Patrick Straub, “Reports are trickling in, chatter is growing louder in the corners of local fly shops, and pullouts are being used more by anglers than for excess snow. Don’t put your skis or boards away yet—some of the best snow of the season will soon fall on the slopes. But if you take your recreation seriously, have your waders and rod at the ready at all times because we are in the season of potential.”

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Some parts of Montana received record-breaking snowfall in February, resulting in well-above-normal snowpack totals for March 1 for most river basins, according to snow survey data collected by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Twenty-five SNOTEL stations and manual measurement locations set new records for February totals, and 21 measurements at other locations were the second highest on record. Long story short, spring fishing should be great and late summer and fall fishing should remain strong.

If you are in the market to buy a Montana Fly Fishing Ranch, here are some great options.

Hall and Hall Auctions Does More Than Sell Real Estate

By: Rob Hart

As popular as Farm and Ranch auctions have been around the country, live auctions have been a mainstay at charity events for years and years. As with any hard to value asset, charity managers have known donations sell best via auction. Hall and Hall loves to give back and contribute to as many great causes as possible.  Here is a list of some of our favorite charity events that we work and support.

  • The National Western Stock Show’s Junior Livestock Auction: Considered by many to be the National Championship of the livestock showing circuit, the Junior Sale is an opportunity for the best and brightest of our youth to show off their agricultural expertise and raise hundreds of thousands of dollars in educational donations.

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  • Weld County Junior Livestock Sale: Where the top 245 animals from the county are sold to support youth education, FFA, 4-H, and the local food bank.
  • RamStrength Lubick Foundation: When cancer victims are not in the position to both fight the fight and manage day to day financial responsibilities, look no further than RamStrenght; the only local charity providing financial assistance for all types of cancer survivors in Northern Colorado.
  • Colorado State Volleyball: Even at the best universities, it’s not possible to fund every sport to the necessary level without community support.  The Season Banquet has become one of the great opportunities for Ram Volleyball fans to give back and support the volleyball team.
  • UCHealth Poudre Valley Hospital and Medical Center of the Rockies: The Spring Benefit is one of the biggest live auction events in Northern Colorado. Raising hundreds of thousands of dollars each spring to help the less fortunate better manage medical expenses.
  • St. Jude Evening of Hope: The signature fundraising event in Denver, Colorado, supporting the lifesaving mission of the Children’s Research Hospital. St. Jude Rare Whiskey Auction: Another great event to both add to your high-end liquor collection, and raise money for Children’s Medical Research. St. Jude Annual Toy Auction:  Each year auctioneers from around the country descend on the hospital to perform the National Auctioneers Association’s annual toy auction.  Millions have been raised over the years and every child goes home with a toy.
  • Pearl Harbor’s Pacific Aviation Museum Gala Fundraiser: Developing and maintaining an internationally recognized aviation museum that educates the young and honors the aviators that defend our freedom.

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We donate our time and expertise to these great charities for various personal reasons.  However, there are many more which deserve time, money and attention. We encourage everyone to pick a great organization that means something to you and support it to the maximum of your ability.

 

 

 

Ranches are Rarely “Iconic” & “Quaint”

By: Jim Taylor

As the chief editor of much that is published by Hall and Hall and as an avid reader of much that is published by others in our industry, I am struck by the overuse of certain words that I believe were meant to be used sparingly to describe something very special and unusual.

In my last blog, I talked about the true meaning of the word “legacy.” In that instance, I objected to the use of the word rather than the overuse of it but there is no question that it is overused as well.

My current targeted words are “iconic” and “quaint”. These are both words that appear in virtually every ranch brochure I have seen and frankly, they are both words that should be reserved for something that is very special.

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Let me begin with the actual definition of quaint. “Quaint means strange and unusual in an old-fashioned and charming way”. Usually, it is used to describe a town. Well, frankly I have yet to meet a town west of the Mississippi that fits that definition! Quaint towns can be found on occasion in New England but certainly not in the American West. The truth is that we have hardly been around long enough to even qualify to be old fashioned much less charming. We do have some old structures and some of them are charming but I have yet to see anything that fits the definition of quaint.

The best definition I can find of iconic is: “Someone or something regarded as embodying the essential characteristics of an era, group, etc. If you describe someone or something as an icon, you mean that they are important as a symbol of a particular thing.” In my mind for something or someone to be iconic, it or they must be quite special and unique if they are to embody the essential characteristics of whatever it is. Nowadays it seems the standards have been lowered and at least half of the towns, mountains, rivers, and ranches in the west have become iconic. It leaves one asking the question: What essential characteristics do they embody? More often than not the answer is quite simply “none”. It is a shame because “iconic” is a term that should be reserved for the very best and it has been cheapened and abused by overuse.

Perhaps I am hypersensitive as a wordsmith, but I do mourn the loss of great and meaningful words that have been destroyed by overuse. I do not object to people using common descriptive words like “beautiful” or “spectacular” because these are terms that are more personal. Something might be beautiful to one person and ugly to another and vice versa. These words do not necessarily lose their value by being used a lot. They are expressing someone’s opinion. It’s the words that actually specifically describe something that loses their value when they are applied inappropriately.

 

CNBC: Boone Pickens puts $250 million ranch up for sale

Mesa Vista Ranch comprises over 100 square miles of prime Eastern Texas Panhandle ranch land and represents almost 50 years of Boone Pickens’ assemblage, improvement, and devotion.  For more information, contact Monte Lyons at 806-438-0582.

Boone Pickens puts $250 million ranch up for sale from CNBC.

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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