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What is the best state to own a horse ranch?

4 Comments

  1. jenna says:

    My aunt and uncle just bought a house on 70 acres of land in Reno, Nevado. They plan to bring their horses and move there from Massachusetts. The house and all that land only cost them $160,000 since it’s basically the middle of nowhere…where I live in Mass you can barely get a small house with no land for that much money!

  2. Pagan says:

    Marion County Florida is THE horse capitol of the United States.

  3. Punk Rock and Minerals says:

    Arizona
    it’s nice and warm and sunny

  4. Trainer0KidzNponies says:

    Well, that depends on your budget, management costs, and desired business.

    Marion county I know well [FL] but it has some HUGE draw backs. A TB dominant market, poor grazing [no matter what people say the grazing is poor unless it is improved pasture], severe drought spells, and high taxes. Land is way over prices, even in the most depressed farming area of marion. However, if you have a lot of money, it has nice climate [aside from summer], if you’re into TB breeding it is only second to Kentucky, and has large equine communities close together.

    I will point out the 3 major factors in choosing a farm.

    1) Budget- NY, PA, MA, FL, CA, are all very high priced for a decent farm with good land. If you are looking for a farm worth anything for resale, raising livestock, maintaining horses, etc. It is going to be over $150,000 and close to $300,000+. The cheaper places are WY, MO, MT, TN, WV, VA, AL, GA, OK, ID, OH, KA, and UT. They have good farms for as little as $40,000 depending on what standard of living you are use too. Land is also cheap so the option to build is always there.

    2) Pasture, Nutrition, and Space. You will save thousands a year if you have good pasture. All counties have min. requirements for space. Usually its 1 horse per .25 acre with most being .3-.5 per acre. Ideally, you want at least 3 acres per horse. So if you have, say, 5 horses, you want 15 acres. This ensures good pasture rotation, management, etc. Some states have the space but the cost of hay is high because of lack of pasture. Horses here often have aliments owners aren’t aware of and when the price of hay sky rockets, can’t afford their horses. AZ, NE, NM and parts of TX. Also, the price of water is very high in these places. Nutrition is extremely poor as well. Parts of TX however, have great pasture. WY, UT. MT, MO, GA, AL, TN, KY, WV, VA, SC, NC, OK, and WI all have plenty of room at a fair price.

    3) Economy. You want to be able to afford your place, feeding, care, etc. But also get a job. Most parts of the country are under water in the job market. Be careful about rural lands, these people often make a living raising animals, crops, etc. If you aren’t experienced in this, you will quickly run out of money. Don’t count on skills to get you by. Look to places close to a good hiring spot, have some kind of education and experience in other non-agricultural related business.

    I would say, based on these 3 guidelines, parts of UT, VA, WY and WI are your best bet. They are fair in price, space, and okay in economy with suitable grazing land [except parts of UT] and have large equine communities of various size.

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