Rose Corey
Phone: (253) 921-0585   |  
Specializing in Equestrian and Farm PropertiesSpecializing in Equestrian and Farm Properties

 The idea of watching horses grazing peacefully from your home is for many is a dream come true. But, while the pastoral image of rolling hills and white fences is easy to conjure up, finding a horse property, or ranch that meets your needs can be quite an undertaking. To find the farm that fit your needs, consider some of the following amenities that many horse farms may or may not offer- before you buy.

The Barn: Do you want to build your own barn or would you prefer to work with an existing structure? Many equine properties will have an existing barn or shelter for the horses. Were building permits aquired by the seller, and was the existing structure built to code? Ideally, knowing what to look for is paramount in choosing the right barn for your needs.

Structural Soundness - While there is a great deal of charm to many old barns; safety must be your first consideration. You may need the inspection services of a structural engineer prior to buying that older barn. While remodeling is always an option, you may choose to replace the old barn with a modern and affordable prefabricated barn.





Location, location, location - Consider the barns proximity to the road, home and storage facilities. Also, evaluate how its location will affect the risk of flooding. Drainage is of paramount importance- you've got to know DIRT! What direction is the barn facing- will your horseshoer be facing storm conditions while working on your horses? What kind of "traffic flow" will be utilized in your everyday activities and care of the horses?

Tack room. Tack is a huge monetary investment. Security and convenience are key here.  Heated and insulated tackrooms are also a consideration and recommended to protect your investment. Be sure to locate the tackroom in close proximity where your horse will be groomed and tacked up.

The Stalls:
When considering stalls for your horse farm, think like a horse. Is there a way you can escape, injure yourself, injure your neighbor or otherwise wreak havoc in the barn? Then look long and hard at the size, construction and use of the existing or planned stalls. Use common sense when it come to sharp hooks and any protruding appendages. I highly recommend the book "The Perfect Stall" by Karen Hayes DVM, MS. Make sure your stalls are designed so the Horses can see their buddies, they are happier and less stressed when they can.

Stall Use: Do the stalls meet the needs of their intended use? For breeding facilities, broodmare and stallion stalls should be considerably larger and well removed from each other with ample barriers between stalls. For boarding barns, separate storage or tack areas are always almost a neccessity.

Road Access: The ability for trucks to access your horse farm easily is critical to the smooth operation of the facility. Regardless of the proximity to the main road, having a well-maintained, sturdy road to the barn and storage areas that allow large trucks to safely enter, and turn around, is imperative.

Fencing: Most horse farms will have some sort of existing fencing. When evaluating the current fencing and planned improvements, it again pays to think like a horse. The primary job of a fence is to safely contain your horses. If there is a way they can injure themselves, they will, so safety must be the main concern. That said, the aesthetics of your fence will add appeal and beauty to your horse property AND value and/or marketability. There are many new and inovative materials on the market today. Believe it or not, I have found the best advice regarding fencing was from my veterinarian. They see first hand the worse fencing injuries to horses. Listen to them!

Wood Fencing: Wood, while traditionally beautiful and generally safe, they can be difficult to maintain and costly.

Vinyl Fencing: Although it can be pricey, vinyl fencing provides the aesthetic beauty of a traditional wood fence, is safe and very durable, and can bring added value to a property.

Electric Fencing: Used alone or with an existing fence, electric fences can discourage a horse's natural propensity to find something to hurt themselves on by providing both a physical and psychological barrier. I personally love the new vinyl coated "hot-wire" fencing. Our babies have bounced right off of it, without a scratch.

Barbed Wire: Generally speaking, avoid barbed wire like the plague.

Pastures and Turn Outs: On every horse farm, unless of course your in suburbia, there should be ample room to turn out your horses. Take the number of horses and intended use of the turnouts into consideration when selecting a horse property. Learn about rotating pastures and sacrfice areas- you can call your local County Conservation District, they are ususally more than happy to help you with a plan. Nobody wants to be unindated with muddy pastures, they are unslightly and a health hazzard.
Arenas: If you do a lot of arena riding, your equestrian estate should have an existing arena or room to accommodate one. Don't underestimate the cost of building an arena or improving an existing one. Footing is a considerable investment that will affect the soundness of your horses and the amount of maintenance your arena will require. It is also important not to underestimate the need for a covered or indoor arena depending on the climate where you intend to buy. In our part of the country "all-weather" is a must for any outdoor arena to be used year-round.

Water: Horse farms need good access to water both in the barn and in the pasture. Make sure the plumbing meets your needs. Is it on a well or public system? Have the water tested for pressure and contents before you buy.

Restroom: Barns can be a very social setting. Providing either a bathroom or "porta-potty" is another consideration. Most people don't want their farriers, boarders, etc., coming through their home to use their restroom.

Lighting: Electricity is another factor that will affect the usability of your ranch. Barns need electricity if for no other reason than to use in an emergency. Arena lighting may also be necessary, particularly if you intend to use your horse property as a boarding facility. Have it inspected by a licensed electrical contractor before you buy, to assure it will meet your needs.

Hay, feed and equipment storage: Having ample hay, grain and equipment storage on your horse farm is both convenient and cost effective. It will prolong the life of your feed by protecting it from the elements and minimize maintenance on farm equipment. And you will need farm equiptment, a tractor being almost a neccessity. Additionally, a secure feed area will prevent Pokey the Pony from helping himself to a month's worth of grain in one sitting.

The Home: Last, but certainly not least, you should consider the home on your horse property. Does it meet your family needs? Is it well placed in relation to the barn? With a list of priorities, amenities and wishes in mind, these are things to consider before taking that leap into purchasing that dream horse property, and will help minimize the risks. JB & Diane Rupert on the purchase of this incredible Enumclaw equestrian estate.

This amazing equestrain estate is located on 20 stunning acres in Enumclaw. It is a must see to believe home, and Diane and JB have done an incredible of job adding their personal touches to it!

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