Whether you're just looking to keep your own horses on your own property or you want to open a riding and training business, searching for the right horse property can be quite the challenge. There are so many things to consider, from the size of the barn to the material the fences are made from. Some deficiencies you can make up for — like a lack of hay storage or a ring with bad footing — but other deficiencies may make your dream property more of a nightmare. Here are some key mistakes to avoid when buying a horse property.
Mistake #1: Buying too large for your needs.
If you truly only plan on ever owning two or three horses, don't get talked into buying a 10-stall barn just in case. You'll pay a lot more for a barn this size, and the upkeep will be more expensive, too. Plus, when you have those extra stalls, they have a way of filling themselves — with friends' horses, rescues you just had to buy from the auction, and boarders who you may need to have just to cover your bills. Decide how large of a barn you need, and then stick to that size.
Mistake #2: Never seeing the property when it is wet.
Most pastures and rings look nice when it has been relatively dry outside. What you really need to know is how the land fares when it gets wet. If you never visit when it is wet outside, you might move in and find that your pastures are a swamp and your ring is way too slick for three months out of the year. Don't buy a farm until you've seen it on or just after a rainy day.
Mistake #3: Not asking about the neighbors.
When you have horses on your land, you really need to have understanding neighbors. If they are the type that can't stand the sight of manure or will call the police if your gelding breaks free and goes trotting through their front yard one morning, living next to them won't be fun at all. If you meet the current owners of the property, you can ask them about the neighbors. You can also knock on those neighbors' doors yourself and ask how they feel about having horses next door. If the neighbors also have horses on their land, then that's a home run!
Keep these factors in mind when looking at horse farms for sale so that you don't make a mistake in your purchase.