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      Introduction | Rural Outlook

      We approach the spring with a mixture of excitement and trepidation, both in terms of the rural economy, and wider macroeconomic factors.

      06 Mar 2024 2 min read

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      Farm and estate owners are faced with so many exciting opportunities, yet UK PLC continues to suffer from stubbornly high inflation, high interest rates (meaning financing projects is more expensive, perhaps making them unviable), and a broken planning system, despit Mr Gove’s promises.

      The commercial property market continues to struggle, with transactions well below historic norms and values across most sectors well down. The residential property market suffered in the last half of 2023, although green shoots are beginning to appear.

      Unrest in Ukraine and The Middle East continue, and we are faced with an election this year, with most predictions being that the ‘swingometer’ is unlikely to remain in the blue. What that means in terms of legislative change for landowners remains unknown, but we are cautiously optimistic on many fronts.

      With that background, landowners may consider acting in an ostrich-like manner - burying their heads in the sand, and waiting for brighter times.

      But history tells us time and time again, that those who take opportunities quickly and decisively, and are early adopters of new ideas (one step behind the pioneers, therefore being able to learn from their mistakes almost always benefit from their decisions and actions in the long-term.

      Landowners are almost universally ‘in it for the long-term’ and have ridden economic cycles before, and will most certainly do it again.

      This edition of Rural Outlook sets out some of the opportunities which are available, and gives our thoughts and ideas as to how landowners might take them forward.

      There is no ‘one size fits all’ and it will be important to take advice that fits with your own circumstances. We hope that you enjoy this edition of Rural Outlook, and it gives you some ideas and inspiration for your farms and estates.

      Carpe diem!

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