20 DECEMBER 1930, Page 16

Country Life


A great many landowners are deep in thought and discussion —much beyond the normal—over the value of their acres. It is generally believed that next year they will he asked to set their own value on their landed property. It is obvious that if the land is valued high it may be taxed high, if valued low it may be bought by the State for a song. But apart from this unhappy dilemma what troubles some of the owners is the patent fact that their land appears to have much less than no value. If they speak the truth and say that it is a minus quantity presumably the State might say : "Then pay us for taking it from you." valuation of an estate :— Here is one particular self-

Five farmhouses ..

£7,000 Outbuildings £2,000 Eight cottages .. £1,800 Total .. +£10,800 Total value of estate plus land £8,000 Value of land is therefore .. —f4,800

The sum is, of course, a reductia ad absurdum,. for the reason that the buildings are valued in relation to the cost of erection less their antiquity ; and the whole estate is valued in relation to its selling price in the market to-day. The general con- clusion is that much land cannot be valued. There is no such thing as prairie value in land, which may be a liability in one decade and an asset in the next.