Starting my first barn
Hi all -- For years and years, I've dreamed of starting my own barn. I don't know what it takes to find one, and going through the process of starting it. Is it similar to buying a house? If someone has gone through the process of either buying land and building, or buying a pre-existing equestrian center, please let me know. I'm in the very early stages of thinking.. so any help would be great.
Get into the industry and learn from successful barn owners.
There are some basic similarities when buying any real estate, but some additional considerations when buying a property for a horse business. Water? Condition of the land? Regulations on waste disposal? Outlook for other development in the area? You can end up getting pushed out of your location if the surrounding area develops in a way that is unfriendly to large animals and the residents decide your business is a nuisance or hazard. Utilities. Can the existing infrastructure support your needs or will you have costs to upgrade power lines?
Good luck with achieving your goals and have fun learning about it all. Pretty interesting stuff.
I am in the process of doing the same thing! We just listed our house here in CO and we are looking at KY. I want a small facility. The main things are what Boots mentioned but also look at the facilities. Are you going to be able to cater to the main riding style in the area? Indoor arenas are almost a must in any area. I looked up facilities in the area's we are looking to buy and studied their layout and what they did with their place. Gave me some good ideas.
Also, are you looking at staying in NJ? There is a nice place for sale in PA for pretty cheap. The house is on the smaller side but the facilities are nice.
You need to figure out how big you want to be, do you want to board or just have your own horses? Do you want to breed, keep stallions, all that will factor into the property you want to purchase. It is easier to get a property that already has the barn and pastures, but then you can't lay it out the way you want, or whoever did it may have laid it out weird. There are rules and regulations you'll need to look up for housing stallions (if that is something you want to do), for using it the property as a business and not just personal use, i.e. boarding and lessons. For example, the way I understand it where I am, a place that is zoned r-1/ag, means you can have larger livestock, but it can't be a business, like I can't board horses at my place for money, so check into your local rules and regulations. Also, are you going to hire someone else to take care of the animals and property, if so, are you going to offer a place to stay on the property, or is there already a place for help to stay? The type of fencing is also important when looking at a place.
So first off I'd figure out exactly how many horses you want to keep on the property, so you have an idea of what size of property you need, then look into rules and regulations about zoning and such, then go look at some places both pre existing, and land you'll have to build, and see what the cost difference will be in initial purchase price, then ask around the area and see what other barns did, and if they built, how much it cost, so you can figure out what will work best for you. Good luck.
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