The average cash rent paid for an acre of Iowa cropland for 2019 declined by $3, or 1.3%, according to the annual survey conducted by Iowa State University (ISU). The survey pegs the statewide average cash rent at $219 an acre, down from $222 last year and even with the $219 average reported in 2017. This year's finding marks the fourth in five years that the state-average cash rent has declined. The peak came in 2013 when the statewide average was $270 an acre. This year's $219 average marks a $51, or 19% decline, from the peak. That percentage decrease is nearly equal to the five-year decline in the statewide average cropland value as reported by ISU.
Crop district 3 reports the highest average cash rent at $237 an acre. That's down $7, 2.8%, from 2018. That's followed by crop district 4 with an average of $235, down $1, 0.5%, from last year. Crop districts 1 and 5 are tied for third highest at $231 an acre, both down $6, 2,5% from 2018. As usual, crop district 8 reports the lowest average cash rent at $174, even with 2018. That is the only district with an average under $200 an acre. Crop district 9 is the only district to report an increase, listing an average of $210 an acre, up $7, 3.4%.