15 November 2022

While the value of farmland is increasing, farmers are being faced with tougher costs and regulation headaches post-Brexit; all in the face of a cost-of-living crisis. One of the best ways UK farmers can make money from their land is by leasing their land for renewable energy projects.

COP27 presented a win-win for farmers by highlighting their vital role in achieving net zero and food security by repurposing land for renewable energy infrastructure. Green Switch Capital is leading the way with our land leasing programme that offers farmers a form of passive income and access to green energy.

UK farmers are feeling the pinch between rising production costs, the cost-of-living crisis and skyrocketing energy prices. Land leasing offers UK farmers a way to earn money from their land to access affordable renewable energy.

We’re breaking down the challenges faced by UK farmers and how land leasing offers a way for landowners to create a passive income stream during the cost-of-living crisis.

Value of UK Farmland

Agricultural land has shot up in value in the UK in recent years, hitting its highest level since 2016. Farmland is painting a similar picture to residential property and typically sells at or above listing prices. Arable land sits at an average value of £9,500/acre, the equivalent of a £100 rise per acre price in a little over a year. This per acre price is only marginally below the peaks experienced in 2014/15.

Pasture farmland has also seen a 3% rise in the last 12 months to an average of £7,500 per acre. While variables such as location and land quality will impact price, there is a clear trend toward rising land value. 73% of farmland sold in the last 12 months fetched the same price as their listing or higher. It’s the highest percentage to have achieved this since 2014.

Demand for farmland continues to outweigh supply, leading to inflated prices and a shortage of farms. However, not everyone is ready to sell their farmland. That’s where land leasing comes in.

It allows farmers a way to earn money from their land without selling it entirely. Solar farms typically have a 25-year lifespan unless the planning permission is renewed with the potential for farmers to continue to use their land alongside the solar panels.

The Challenges Facing UK Farmers

While land value is rising, UK farmers are still facing challenges on all fronts. The spiralling cost of production and energy bills is forcing many farmers to make significant changes or even contemplate the future of their businesses. Research shows that 3% of dairy producers in the Southwest of England have closed down in the last six months, primarily due to rising costs.

It's no surprise that the government has stepped in to announce measures intended to help farmers struggling to absorb rising costs. The food strategy announced in England was designed to back farmers and increase domestic food production in the process.

One way of tackling rising energy costs for farmers would be increasing access to green energy supplies. The UK is a world leader in renewable energy with Scotland recording a record amount of renewable energy during the summer of 2022. It saw a 36% increase during the same period from 2021 to 2022.

Earn Passive Income from Unused Farmland

How can farmers who don’t want to sell their land earn money to make their farms more financially viable? Land leasing is one of the most accessible options. It creates a passive income stream for farmers while providing access to renewable energy and enabling farmers to play their role in achieving net zero by 2050.

Green Switch Capital is a renewable energy business with a difference. We’re working to ensure the UK reaches net zero by 2050 by creating an independent energy market that is zero-carbon. Our land leasing programme allows farmers and landowners to earn passive income, support their businesses, and benefit from green energy, without the headache of navigating regulations and planning permission.

How To Lease Your Land for Green Energy Projects

We’ve developed our land leasing programme to streamline access to renewable energy and repurpose unused land. The Green Switch Capital team are experts in developing farmland into renewable energy sites, from working with local authorities to securing planning permission. Working with Green Switch Capital offers farmers a guaranteed passive income stream to make their businesses more resilient.

How can you earn more from your farmer through land leasing for renewable energy projects? We’ve broken the process down step-by-step to show how you can lease your land and earn a passive income.

1. Consultation with Green Switch Capital

The first step to making money from your farmland is speaking with one of our account managers. They’ll discuss the land you have available and advise on how much passive income you could earn by signing up for our land leasing program.

2. Confirmation & Letter of Authority

We’ll get to work on the paperwork confirming your land boundary to double-check exactly what your land includes. You’ll sign a letter of authority to allow us to make an application to the electricity grid on your behalf.

Our goal is to streamline the process with our team overseeing most of the application process.

3. Expert Team Analysis

Our team will conduct feasibility tests to ensure that your land is suitable for our renewable energy projects. This analysis will include a local grid connection study and an investigation of any potential planning restrictions.

4. Site Visit

We’ll send one of our trained site surveyors to view your property after your consultation with an account manager. Our site visits are not always necessary, and the option will be discussed during your initial conversation

5. Grid Connection Application

Our team are experts in the renewable energy sector and will oversee every step of the grid application process.

6. Sign Your Land Lease

When the in-house analysis is finished and your applications are approved, you’ll sign your contract and confirm the duration of the lease.

7. Planning Application

After your lease is signed, our team will start the planning application process on your behalf.

8. Construction

Green Switch Capital will start construction of the renewable energy infrastructure on your land when the planning application is approved.

Earn Passive Income with Green Energy Projects

Solar farming is a win-win for landowners, sustainability, and the surrounding community. Transforming unused farmland for solar projects is reversible and time-limited, helping to provide farmers with a stable passive income stream.

You can play your part in achieving net zero, tackling climate change, and speeding up the transition to renewable energy. Contact our team today to find out more about our land leasing programme and how you can earn passive income from your land.