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How Big Is 100 Acres of Land?

I grew up near a large number of gigantic farms and properties with huge houses on them. If you’re like me you have probably wondered how much land do these monster properties take up. Well, it can be difficult to visualize, especially anything over one acre. But what does a really huge property of land look like? What can you do with it and how big is 100 acres of land?

In total there are 4,356,000 square feet in 100 Acres of land. This is over 75 times larger than an American football field and is 532 times larger than the average home lot size in the United States, which is one-fifth of an acre.

Many current and potential homeowners dream about having just one acre of land (43,560 square feet). Can you imagine what you could do with 100 acres? Follow along as we explore some interesting facts and comparisons about this huge amount of land.

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Visual Comparison of 100 Acres

We had a lot of fun putting together these comparisons for you. To make it easier to follow along I figured it would be best to just review how we came up with our visual comparisons. So, in case you are a bit of a math nerd like myself our calculations and measurement for 100 acres is below:

1 acre of land is 43,560 square feet. We simply multiply 43,560 square feet x 100 to get the square footage for our 100 acres of land which totals in at 4,356,000 square feet.

75 Football Fields

You could fit 75 standard American football fields into 100 Acres.

Each football field takes up 57,600 square feet. We then divide 57,600 square feet by 4,356,000 square feet to get 75.625 football fields. Of course, this does not account for anything other than the actual field.

17 of the worlds largest Cruise Ships

You could fit 17 of the world’s largest cruise ships on 100 acres.

The Symphony of the Sea, by Royal Caribbean, is currently the world’s largest cruise ship. It has a maximum capacity of 6,680 passengers. The Symphony of the Sea is 1,188 feet long and 215 feet wide. This gives us a total of 255,420 square feet. If we divide 255,420 square feet by 4,356,000 square feet we get 17.05.

12,700 Almond trees

You could fit the 12,700 almond trees on 100 acres of land.

According to the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economic planting densities for almond trees range from 75 to 180 trees per acre. The amount of almond trees, a farmer is able to plant on 1 acre of land is based on how the land is laid out. For our purposes, we will take the average and say you could plant 127 almond trees on 1 acre of land. This means you would be able to plant 12,700 almond trees on 100 acres of land.  

5.4 Golden Gate Bridges

You could fit the surface area of 5.4 Golden Gate Bridges on 100 acres of land.

According to CNN the Golden Gate Bridge is 1.7 miles long which equates to 8,981 feet and has a width of 90 feet. If we take those two numbers and multiple them we get a total of 808,290 square feet. If we then divide 808,290 square feet by 4,356,000 square feet we get 5.4.

500 Average Size Homes

You could fit 532 average home lots on 100 acres.

 From the 2020 U.S. Census, the average home lot size is 8,177 square feet or less than a fifth of an acre, so the 100-acre lot is roughly 500 times larger.

Floor Space of the 2 World Trade Center

The floor space of the 2 world trade center is 4.30556 million ft² which equates roughly to 100 acres or 98.842 acres to be exact.

159 Lincoln Memorials

You could fit 159 Lincoln Memorials on 100 acres.

According to the National Parks Service the Lincoln Memorial finished construction on May 30th 1922. It had a total cost of $3,045,400 and is 27,336 square feet. When we divide 27,336 square feet by 4,356,000 we get 159.

How Much Does 100 Acres of Land Cost?

Since there’s far more land on 100 acres than most families need, most houses on massive about of land typically have crops on the property they harvest. The land included with homes and buildings is not directly tracked by the government, so the closest estimate comes from the prices of farmland and cropland collected and organized by the USDA each year.

Land values are taken for the USDA 2021 Summary

The average price per acre of farmland in the United States was $3,380 according to the 2021 USDA report. That makes the average total for the 100-acre lot a whopping $3,380,000. The price can be even higher in prime real estate areas.

Land values are taken for the USDA 2021 Summary

For cropland, the average price goes up to $4,420. There are regional variations, as well. In California, the average farmland acre went for over $10,000, and the average cropland acre sold for over $13,000. On the other end, Wyoming farmland averaged just $790. With such a wide range, the location of the acreage has a significant impact on its value.

2015 study estimated the price of all land in the United States and came up with a value of about $12,000 per acre. While the number is dated a few years, the average farmland price for that year was $4,190 or just about 5% lower, so the estimate shouldn’t be too far off the actual price.

The study also pointed out that the highest land costs were for developed lots instead of farmland, and most of those lots are in possession of the federal government. If you have 100 acres of developed land, you may have a generational level of wealth under your toes.

What you could do with 100 Acres?

Once you own the land, you are free to use it for a wide array of purposes, within some legal limitations. Land can be used for agriculture, hunting, additional housing, and as a financial investment.

Farming and Agriculture

100 acres is a sizable portion of land that can more than sustain a family through subsistence farming. According to the USDA, about 1 acre of land is enough for a single-family household while leaving the workload manageable. If you add on some grazing animals that do a large portion of their own work, 3 acres should be enough.

Homesteading and subsistence farming are a bit of science, a bit of history, and a bit of art. You will have to do research on everything from what types of crops will grow to the right time to harvest them. Even if it’s doable, it’s not a small amount of work to engage in subsistence farming, so utilizing the land for agriculture is not a viable option for every family.

If you’re interested in having fresh food and a lower ecological footprint, you can participate in subsistence farming to some degree in almost any environment. For small homes and apartments, a few pots can grow herbs that cost far less than they do in the store and don’t need to be cleaned and shipped on a gas-guzzling truck.

Homes with a moderate yard can grow high-value fruits and vegetables like berries and tomatoes to cut down on the food bill. Suburban and rural homes have the potential to drastically cut or even eliminate their food bill. Starting with a few plants now will get you ready just in case you end up inheriting a giant lot of land.

Hunting

One way that those with excess land get value out of it without work is by letting hunters rent out the acreage. A good hunter will take steps to keep the land in better shape so that animals will find it a more attractive location to grow and live.

During the off-season, many deer hunters spend a lot of time in the woods, clearing pathways and adding foliage for foraging. In areas that allow species like deer to thrive with few or no natural predators, the animals may quickly become overpopulated. Hunters manage the animal population, and they’ll usually consider paying you for the privilege.

Additional Housing Options

Being able to spread the joy can be better than having it yourself. Using the average home lot size from earlier, the 100-acre lot can fit 533 average lots if every inch is available for use. Even if you allow 2 acres for pathways and roads, that takes only 10 lots out of the new town. Of course, that would require more infrastructure than the typical random lot would have to supply all those people with water and power.

Instead of cramming all those families into tiny lots, you can combine the farming usage option with sharing the land’s bounty. While the lot’s shape and environment will influence how you can split it up, a perfectly square 100-acre lot on good land has more than enough space for 30 families to live and farm. More hands at the ready will also allow the workload to be shared around those who are willing and capable.

Investment Value

Even if you don’t immediately make use of the excess land, land tends to stay stable or rise in value. Because land can have financial and sentimental value with few downsides, most land in private hands stays off the market for generations. Between the unwillingness of holders to sell and the limited supply, land acreage will almost always increase in value. The question is a matter of how much and how fast.

In the USDA report from 2021, the average price of farmland rose by 7% from 2020 values. This isn’t as high as the average return rate for a standard spread of S&P 500 investments. Like the average pricing, regional variations are high with some seeing increases of around 1%. While the overall average price has increased only about 5% since 2015, the price is more than double that of the 2005 average.

Since it’s somewhat more volatile than other investment options but relatively stable, the 100-acre lot is an excellent portfolio addition, even if you probably shouldn’t invest all of your liquid assets in it.