Benchmark Agribusiness is a Full Range Support Services Practice.
We're More Than Farm Appraisers. Our Other Services Include:

Real Estate Brokering - Fred Greder is also a Licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Iowa.  Check out the Left Margin of the HOME page for the farms currently for sale through Benchmark Agribusiness.   There is also a link there for viewing the farms sold by Benchmark Agribusiness over the past few years.

The brokerages services include public and online auctions.  Not every farm should be brought to the market by auction but, in those instances where an auction would be the most effective way to market a farm,  Benchmark Agribusiness has a valued relationship with Fox Auction Service of Mason City.

The auction commission rates are competitive with other auction companies.  And, like Frank and I are always quick to point out, “You get two heads for the price of one when you hire the Benchmark/Fox Auction team.”

Commercial Real Estate Appraising - We appraise ”transition” land – the cropland around the fringe of the North Central Iowa trade centers that is being absorbed for industrial or commercial uses. We can refer you to a network of well qualified Certified General Real Property appraisers for appraising specialized use buildings like motels, restaurants, Laundromats, strip malls, machinery dealerships, warehouses, repair shops and local industrial buildings.

Financial Consultation - I draw upon two things in my background to advise people on their finances – thirteen years as a farm loan officer and starting a small business from scratch 32 years ago. I’ve had the opportunity to watch literally hundreds of family businesses develop, expand, mature and then transition to the next generation.  We’re not tax or legal experts. We just know what has worked for other businesses, other families and other generations.

Expert Witness Testimony - This is a growing segment of the services offered by Benchmark Agribusiness. Many families and many businesses find themselves resolving disputes through the formal court system. We have testified at arbitration hearings, at the district court level and in federal bankruptcy court.

Bankruptcy Plan Feasibility Analysis - Benchmark's consultants can inject a dose of realism into those Chapter 7, Chapter 11 & Chapter 12 Plans. If you are a debtor trapped in an over extended debt situation, we can help with your Chapter 12 Plan. You need a debt write down plan that is based on solid values and, you need a cash flow plan that's based on realistic projections - projections your lenders will accept. If you're a lender, we can help you convince the Bankruptcy Court when a reorganization plan has no chance of working.

Property Partition Consultation - A massive turnover in the real estate industry is going to take place over the next several years as the "baby boomers" begin to receive their inheritances. Not all heirs have the same aspirations and goals. An increasing number of cases require independent consultants such as Benchmark Agribusiness to advise with the partition of the assets. It's not as easy as it sounds. Equal isn't always equitable. The sum of the parts don't always equal the value of the total. We can help you sort it all out.

Special Use Valuations- More and more family owned and operated farms are finding that the size of the estate of the patriarch or matriarch of the family exceeds the minimum threshold for federal estate tax liability. That is especially true since the recent and rapid rise in farmland values. Section 2032A of the Internal Revenue Service Code allows qualified family owned and operated farms to take advantage of a special election that could lower the value of the farmland for estate valuation purposes. We are very familiar with the details of the fine print of Section 2032A and experienced in preparing these "special use valuations". Past "special use valuations" have lowered the value of the real estate by 30 - 40%. In the future, the Section 2032A value will probably be an even lower percentage of the full value because there is "lag effect" built into the calculations. We'd be happy to provide a free phone consultation.

Court Appointed Referee - Sometimes we can't help the property co-owners amicably split their holdings. In those cases, we are available to serve at the discretion of the Court to equitably divide the property in question.

Property Inspections - Real Estate, Fixtures, Personal Property - Sometimes you don't need to know what things are worth. You just need to take inventory of what's there. But, you can't do it all and you can't be everywhere at the same time. Or, maybe you can do it all and can be everywhere but it is preferable to have a third party to do the fieldwork. Benchmark can provide you with another pair of arms and legs. Let us leverage your time.

Digitized Soil Mapping - Benchmark Agribusiness has the soil maps for all of the North Central Iowa counties on a digitized database. Our computer software can measure the productivity of whole farms, partitioned farms, individual fields or combined fields. We will generate color-coded maps for your use.

The transition of farmland ownership from the "Greatest Generation" to the "Baby Boom" generation is not always a thing of beauty. Usually the argument over Grandma's butter churn has more to do with who was Grandma's favorite daughter or granddaughter than about who used the churn the most when they were kids. We'd like to try to help the Baby Boomers get from here to there with the least amount of damage along the way.

There may be other ways in which our experience and knowledge of the North Central Iowa farmland market can be of use to you.  If your have more questions, don't hesitate to call us at 641-424-6983 or email