What is an Agricultural Tie?

Published: 24/02/2021 By Tom Bloomfield

An Agricultural Occupancy Condition (colloquially known as an “Ag Tie”) is a condition imposed by a Local Authority which is designed to restrict the occupancy of a given residential property to individuals who are employed in agriculture.

To be considered as “employed” in agriculture an occupier would need to work solely, principally or most recently in the agriculture or forestry sectors. These requirements significantly limit the demand for agriculturally tied houses which in turn depresses their value, normally by around a third.

Why do some properties have Ag Ties?
Ag Ties have been issued by local authorities since the 1940’s and are designed to provide accommodation for farmers or their staff that allows them to live close to their place of work. This often means that tied houses are located in positions where conventional planning applications would not be considered.

Removing Agricultural Ties
Local Authorities will sometimes consent to the removal of Ag Ties.

The most common method is for owners to carry out a local needs assessment and to successfully demonstrate that there is no demand for the property concerned from buyers who qualify. This normally requires evidence of twelve months of thorough and unsuccessful marketing.