As a Realtor who specializes in listing and selling horse properties in Western Washington, I’m often asked by sellers what they should do to get their horse farms ready for sale. So… I thought I’d compile a list of recommendations – things that don’t cost much money but will maximize your sale price. It’s important to understand that a prospective buyer will only be interested in seeing your property if it checks off enough boxes on their “must haves” list. Stall count, arenas, pastures, tack rooms and of course the house itself are all included on that list. Your task as a seller is to improve your property before it goes on the market so that it checks off as many of those boxes as possible. It seems like common sense, but you’d be surprised at how many people are unwilling to put the effort into preparing their property for sale. Don’t be one of those people! If you need guidance, I’d be happy to help. Just give me a call or email me. My contact information is below.
Pressure wash everything: Fencing, painted wood and vinyl look terrible after the winter so pressure wash all of it. Pressure wash mud and dirt off the interior and exterior of your outbuildings, get rid of the dust and cobwebs inside your barn and get moss off the roofs. Touch up paint while you’re at it.
Create an arena if you don’t have one: A lot of people have a riding pad somewhere on their property, but they never go to the trouble of fencing it or bringing in footing. Fence your riding area and drag the ground so we can photograph it as an arena and market it as such in the MLS.
Declutter the grounds, house and barn: Get rid of everything that doesn’t have a permanent home under a roof. This applies to extra vehicles, tractors, tractor implements, wheelbarrows and anything that’s just out in the open and covered with a blue tarp. That moldy 1980’s horse trailer with flat tires and the truck that doesn’t run have to go.
Maximize your stall count: I often see barns that only have two stalls (because the owners only have two horses) but that still have space for additional stalls. Finish those out with walls so we can market your barn as having four stalls instead of a two.
You can’t have too much gravel: If you have a gravel driveway or gravel parking areas around your barn, make sure they don’t have potholes or standing water. I can’t tell you how many times my buyers have been turned off by a property simply because of a rutted, muddy driveway.
Fix broken fencing: Whether you have board or vinyl fencing, make sure it’s in good shape. Get rid of chewed or broken boards and rotted posts. Make sure all of the gates are operating properly. If you have wire fencing in your pastures, make sure it’s tightened all the way around. If you have wire fenced paddocks next to the barn for direct turn out, I recommend replacing the wire with wood or vinyl.
Get rid of standing water: Mud is your enemy. If you have standing water in paddocks, arenas or other areas, trench it, install drainage tubes and get the water away from the structures and riding areas. Make sure all your gutters are in place and working properly to keep water away from the house and outbuildings. Put down gravel in paddocks if they are muddy.
Mow everything: Mow your pastures and yard areas prior to photography and keep them mowed regularly while the property is on the market.
Jeff Williams has been riding and showing American Quarter Horses since childhood and is a top producing Realtor with Windermere in Tacoma, Washington. If you have questions about this information, please contact Jeff at (253) 303-1135 or email him at JeffWilliams@Windermere.com.