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If you are selling horse property you are going to need patience. Why?
First let’s divide horse properties into two distinct types. First there are the properties that at some time have been used for horses, may or may not have fences, stables, arenas, but they are zoned for horses. Then there are the active horse properties. These have working fences, stables, barns, arenas, paddocks and are in good shape. What is the difference? Actually it usually comes down to money or in the eyes of the seller, value of the property for being a ready to go horse facility. I’ve written about thebefore and it needs to be considered.
Let’s look at the non active horse properties. The fact is that these do not have additional value attached because the horse facilities either do not exist or they are totally obsolescent. Therefore the cost to buy them will be less. A buyer may be willing to buy these properties because they either do not need any horse facilities or they prefer to do it their way. It may involve removing fences and stables which might seem counter intuitive, but location trumps everything. There will be more buyers for this type of property. It opens up ideas to buyers for mini farms too.
Now active horse properties. With active facilities it’s a take it how it is kind of sale because the buyer is choosing to pay additional funds for the fences or stables etc. Most likely they have or desire to have horses and are looking for something both in the budget but that will work for them. In addition they’ll likely be looking for the house to be right too. Mix that together and you have not only a smaller buyer pool but a bigger wish list to match. With a smaller buyer pool and a greater shopping list, sellers are going to need patience for the right buyer to come along.
Pricing Your Horse Property To Sell?
This is extremely difficult in any area, Barrington included. It’s not too hard to price the non active horse properties with old or non existent outbuildings etc. We simply discount any of that and look for comparable sales of similar houses and land sizes, in the same area. The active horse properties are much harder. If your house and land in today’s market comes in at $600,000 but you spent $300,000 on fences, large stable, even a trailer you are offering to include, it would be naïve to think you can tag on $300,000 to equal $900,000. You simply will not sell. How do you value your expenditure? As I said before there is no formula. Should it be $200,000 or $150,000 or even less? I don’t have the answer to that question but I do know with my experience of selling horse property, it’s going to be a lot less than you hope for.
There are things in life, big and small, that have great value to the owner but little value on a re-sale. The best example I can give of that is furniture. If you go to a furniture store and by a new six chair dining set, it matches your decor, you love the design, wood and color, and you buy it. Four years later you are moving and although it’s barely been used, you don’t want it anymore. It doesn’t fit in the new house. So you try to sell. I challenge anyone to achieve even a 50% re-sale amount. It’s more likely you’ll get 20-30% to get it sold. If the piece is very unusual, i.e. non conforming, you’ll be giving it away!
What About Some Data?
I wish it were as simple to provide a monthly report on horse property sales but collating the data is very difficult because I cannot separate those non active from active horse properties very well. However here’s some information I gathered for the Barrington Hills area which is where most horse properties are in the 60010 area. I hope this helps those of you selling horse property or considering it for next year.
Sales in Barrington Hills Illinois During 2014.
- Sales of properties with zoning for horses – 24
- Median price of these properties is $710,000
- 9 Properties had horse facilities and 15 did not.
- The overall average market time was 157 days.
- Horse properties with active facilities sold in an average of 224 days
- Horse properties with no active facilities sold in an average of 118 days.
That’s a difference of 106 days, almost double the time frame.
It is important to remind ourselves that the majority of horse properties in Barrington Hills are not large equestrian facilities, they are for families that own one or a few horses for riding and pleasure. Barrington Hills does have a few large horse farms but those are rarely sold.
Selling Horse Property Needs Pro-Active Marketing.
The set it and forget attitude is not going to work here. I would almost say the MLS will do a pretty useless job at selling horse property as a stand alone effort. True horse property buyers are going to be searching online like all the other buyers but jumping on a web site full of listings is going to make that search difficult at best. Buyers looking for horse property are going to search for what they want. They search by Barrington all the time because we are known as a community with zoning for horses due to our large acreage.
Marketing horse property in any area in Northern Illinois requires better use of the internet to attract those searching buyers, that’s something we do well. The scary part of monitoring our traffic to our websites is how many thousands of people search for search a distinct sub section of real estate in Barrington, and yet how few of them buy! At least they find us for their searches and we have listings just of horse properties for them to look at. That seems to be the easy part, it’s much harder to get buyers to commit and for that I do not know the reason why.
A very common mistake is for sellers, is to present a horse property as something it is not. I am not a lover of “puffing” as it’s called in the industry. This is somewhat deceptive. Be honest about what you are selling and realistic about your pricing.
So here’s that reminder, if you are selling horse property, you are going to need patience.
Contact Corinne at 847-363-3686 for helping buying or selling horse property in Barrington Illinois, Lake County or McHenry County IL.