Real Estate Rundown June 18, 2024

Deep Roots. Tall Corn. Iowa!

There are many things I love about Iowa. I love the land, stunning sunsets and the overall quality of life that is enjoyed here. 

It is not uncommon for someone to tell you they grew up in a small town in the middle of nowhere here.  That little town most likely has a post office and grain elevator as the local hubs. The town cafe opens by 7:00 a.m. and the horizon includes a massive church steeple built at the turn of the century when the town forefathers settled into the community. 

In this small town, everyone knows everyone. 

The school is a K-12 with under 50 kids in a graduating class. Your kindergarten mates are most likely with you at your graduation ceremony. 

My mom talks about Libertyville, a rural school she attended in Plymouth County, Iowa. Many of our neighbors were her former classmates.  With a limited number of students, it took everyone to participate in school activities.  My little mom of 5’1” played on the basketball team, was a cheerleader and the accompanist on the piano.  It was literally all hands on deck at Libertyville. 

Traveling to remote dive bars and hole-in-the wall eateries located in a small Iowa town offers some of the best broasted chicken and burgers you can find.  Gas up and take the back roads to enjoy the scenery and ‘check the crops.’ Road trips make a great weekend date night. 

Iowa is riddled with these communities across the state with approximately 940 towns; 75 percent of which have populations of less than 750 people, according to the Iowa Department of Management report from August 2023. All were founded in the 19th Century when there was a need to serve the small farms that surrounded the town. But over the last three decades, farms have consolidated and agricultural production has shifted to larger farms. Some towns have seen growth throughout the years but the trend in many of these towns has seen a reduction in population.

Although we’ve been conditioned to think that growth is positive and population loss is bad, the size of these communities are truly what makes them a great place to live and if asked, many residents will say they are satisfied with their community and there is no need to change. 

Personally, I think that is what makes Iowa great. There is a sense of roots everywhere you go, from the corn in the field to the generations of families who have lived here and nowhere else. 

Deep roots.  Tall Corn.  Iowa.