When it comes to selecting a property for your equine friends, you need to consider several factors, such as facilities, horse-friendly land, and communities.  If you want to make sure that the horses are in the best environment that they can be, you need to strike a balance of these factors when buying a horse property.

That being said, here is a handy list of all the factors and we will go into more detail soon.

Buying A Horse Property – The Shortlist

  • Size of the property
  • Property location
  • Soil and vegetation
  • Terrain and water
  • Existing facilities
  • Community and opportunities for riding

You want only the best for your equine companions!

Alright, now let us dig a bit deeper into each item on the list, starting with:

Size Of The Property

Usually, when it comes to properties, bigger is better. Not necessarily true when it comes to equines but you would do well to have at least one acre per horse. This will provide your friends with an adequate pasture time and spare you the intensive management of mud and manure. Everything less than that and you will need to employ some creative management techniques such as not allowing your horses to graze grass that is below three inches and so on. Larger plots make improving your horse property a bit more difficult and time-consuming, so you need to be aware of that, as well.

Property Location

Have you ever heard a real estate agent saying “when it comes to real estate, it is location, location, location”? You have most likely encountered that phrase at some point in your life. Well, it is true. What you want to do is get a tour of the place and get the big picture, first. You would do well to get a feel for the entire area, not only the property in question. Get a taste of life there, see what kind of activities are going on and if you can see yourself living and riding there.

Say that you want to move to Palm Beach, for example. The best thing to do is to book a hotel for a couple of nights and go out and about and explore the area.

You will have a much better picture on whether you will like it or not if you need to relocate to Palm Beach area with your family.

Property location might just be the most important factor in buying a horse property. It is really important to figure out what you want to get from an area and what that area actually offers.

Soil And Vegetation

When buying a horse property, you want to start from the ground up. And that means soil and vegetation. Often overlooked, soil type is one of the most important factors to consider. Sure, you will not be growing any crops, but quality pasture demands quality grass and soil type greatly influences it.

Organic soils are the absolute best for pasture growth but they are vulnerable to precipitation and your paddocks can turn into a muddy mess quite easily. On the other hand, soils that are well-drained and contain gravel are perfect for buildings but leave a lot to be desired in terms of nutrients.

The best thing to do is to contact NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service) and ask them for advice when soil type is concerned. It is most likely that you will have several soil types on the property and that information will come in useful when you want to decide where to build paddocks, barns etc.

You want to have the right soil in the right place, trust us. It will make management of your equine friends much more, well, manageable.


Terrain And Water

Managing your property gets harder on hills than in flat areas and that is a fact. You see, water that runs off hillsides can easily collect in horse paddocks and create more work for you. Obviously, the best thing to do here is to check the property in the rainy season and see where and how the water runs.

Next, make a list of all the water features. These include ponds, irrigation ditches, as well as wetlands and creeks.

Finally, you need to check the county laws concerning these features, as some may be protected by law and you might be required to invest more work and money into fencing them.

Existing Facilities

Alright, enough about the land itself, time to get to the fun part. Looking at fences, arenas, and buildings that already exist on the property. Are there any stalls or run-in sheds present, perhaps?

You need to carefully examine all of the existing facilities in order to make a good decision for you and your equine friends.

Ask yourself this:

  • Are the existing facilities good enough for what I have in mind?
  • Are there any metal corners of rough edges that can injure my horses?
  • Are the buildings large enough for my horses?
  • Are the footing and flooring appropriate?
  • Is the fence in a good shape and is it safe for my horses?
  • You also might want to consider distances between the buildings. Ideally, the barn should be close to the house so you do not need to hike to get to it, and so on.

Community And Opportunities For Riding

You want your property to be in an equestrian community. Trust us on this. While this is not always possible, it is certainly one of the greatest boons for both you and your horses. Having a community that understands equine needs as well as yours is invaluable. Not to mention that common interests create local events, products, and services.

To be honest, the best thing to do here is to consult a professional or a realtor with good knowledge of the area. It is important to know what the future plans for the community are. If the community is not equestrian, is it at least horse-friendly? You do not really want to get in trouble with the neighbors just because you own horses.

And lastly, there are opportunities for riding to consider. Does your property have an arena? Does it have a round pen? How much will it cost to build one if it is not present? Also, check out the surrounding area. Ideally, it should not be a hassle to go out for a ride.

Oh, and you want to enjoy the scenery when you do.

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