Equestrian properties are some of Britain’s most sought-after homes. It might be a rolling country estate, a secluded pasture, or even a few acres of land with a stable. Living with your horses just across the yard can be a wonderful experience. Whether you’re a seasoned competitor taking your horses to competitions every weekend, or a rider who enjoys a quiet hack in the woods, there’s an equestrian property that will suit your needs.
Once you’ve decided to purchase a ‘home for two’ there’s plenty to think about. From choosing a property with the correct soil, to knowing what features to look for in a barn, here is everything you need to know about buying the equestrian property of your dreams.
1. High-quality land
It’s no secret that land is something you should never compromise on, because it’s the only part of a property that you can’t change. When dealing with equestrian properties, land is especially important as your four-legged friend will be living on it almost exclusively. Land with free-draining soil is ideal, as it’s easy to manage in all seasons. Budget at least 1.5 acres of land per horse, more if you can as horses are happier with more space. If you purchase more land than your horses require, you can rotate your pastures. Purchasing more land gives you flexibility in case you’d like to expand your property and build an arena, or if you acquire another horse.
2. A reasonable budget
It’s certainly worth doing your research before you view properties, so you’ll have a reasonable idea of what you can afford. In Surrey, Oxfordshire, and Gloucestershire, a five-bedroom home with attached equestrian facilities will require a budget of about £1.5 million, but you can find land with equestrian facilities for £250,000 in Surrey. With an equestrian property, you should consider compromising on the house before anything else. A house can be improved later, land, however, cannot.
3. Access to water
The average horse drinks between five and ten gallons of water per day, so good water access is essential in an equestrian property. Plumbing should be modern and up-to-date, indoors and outdoors. It’s essential to have a sink in your barn, and be sure that the water facilities are in easy reach of both pastures and stables. You won’t want to be lugging gallons of water long distances!
4. A well-built barn
When looking at equestrian properties that already have facilities, be sure that the barn has stables, a large tack room, and electricity and water. Most horses will be comfortable in a stall that’s 12’x12’, so bring your tape measure. Stables should face away from prevailing winds.
5. Plenty of storage space
Storage is essential in an equestrian property, even if you’re thinking of expanding the property in the future. Horses require plenty of equipment, so again, a large tack room is very important. If you’re stabling several horses, consider properties that would offer enough space for separate storage of feed, hay, and dietary supplements.
6. A conveniently located yard
The ideal equestrian property would have a yard within sight and earshot of the main house. However, having a yard located too close to the main residential structure can bring down the value of the home, so be sure to mention yard proximity to your estate agent and get their opinion.
7. Good access
Many equestrian properties are very rural, and some can only be accessed by winding country lanes. When viewing a property, look at the access points and make sure there’s ample space to get a horse trailer in and out of the property, and to turn a truck around as well.
Whether you’re looking for a country estate or a stable on a few acres, owning an equestrian property is sure to be one of the most rewarding things you can do for you and your horses. Take a look at our website today to find your perfect equestrian property.