Spring is on the way, already the evenings are drawing out and before you know it there will be warmth in the sun and spring flowers in abundance. The perfect time to show case your equestrian property for sale on the open market. Large or small, preparing a stable yard, fields, possibly a manege and a house for market can seem a fairly daunting task. Fox Grant estate agents give you an insight into what makes a perfectly presented property and how to achieve it. Starting now with your planning and de cluttering will really help to ensure your property is ready and looking its very best when your equestrian estate agents arrive to value it. Breaking it down into stages allows you to tackle each area properly.
Now is a perfect time to do some, probably much needed, de cluttering of the tack room. Tidy rugs, organize saddle racks, throw away or send for mending old head collars, fly masks, that one rubber glove whose friend went missing in action 3 months ago and so on.
We all know that during the winter months when it is cold and dark the last priority is the loose hay, the plastic haylage bags and the endless string. By April we are all mountaineering over a pile of rubbish to even find the bales, never mind the haynets. Pick a nice frosty morning when the sun is shining and load all the loose hay into a barrow and dispose of it, put all the old sacks and string into feed bags and take to the dump.
An endless job during the autumn and winter months but well worth keeping on top of. A quick whizz around with a ladder, rubber gloves and a trug once a week, keeps them clear of leaves and other debris and ensures they are working efficiently. Also note any connections or downpipes that are not good and mend or replace them. You can't be sure that a prospective buyer won't view on a day of April showers and waterfalls from the gutters can be most off putting.
Check all of your lights are working and that all connections are secure.
A good spring clean of the interior of each stable is well worth the effort. Hire an industrial hoover and remove the years of cobwebs and encrusted dust. A steam cleaner will freshen up the walls and floors and give a prospective buyer confidence that they are moving their horses into a clean environment.
As the ground begins to dry up a bit a good walk around your land checking all the fencing is well worth while. Any rails that have rotted, broken or been chewed need to be replaced and treated, fence posts that are loose in the ground banged in and any loose or broken wire fixed or replaced. Make sure all the gates are hung properly and will open and shut easily. When you get a nice dry week, paint as much of the post and rail fencing as you can.
Yard drains suffer from hay, bedding, feed, leaves etc. endlessly flowing down them. Take a day to remove drain covers and check they are free of debris and running well. If necessary, call a drain specialist to flush them through. A large puddle in the middle of the yard or an over flowing drain does not give a good first impression.
If you have an arena or manege, make sure the surrounding fencing is tidy and safe. If the surface is an older one and weeds can be a problem, wait for a good forecast and get out the weed killer. Just before any viewings make sure the surface is harrowed and all jumps and extras are tidied away into corners.
A well-presented stable yard makes an excellent first impression so be sure to hunt down and remove any weeds or errant grasses. A few planters with spring flowers brighten up an area, you can often make a feature of an old water trough or even an old wheelbarrow.
Traditionally most stone or brick built stable yards have white doors with black metal work. Timber stables are less likely to be painted with a colour but can look very smart with cream doors and brown metal work. Whatever you choose, it is prudent not to go too "off the wall" with colour schemes, keep it clean and fresh. Timber stables will need painting with a wood weather proofing product, easily bought in most DIY stores. Any large areas that have been chewed by some helpful equine should have a metal chew strip to cover it.
As soon as the ground is dry enough, get all your land harrowed and rolled. This is not only good land management but also presents a great picture, nothing looks better than a tidy rolled field. If your land is inclined to a lot of docks and thistles, a quick spray with weed killer may be worthwhile.
Last but certainly not least, arrange to have your muck heap removed just before your property is valued. A large sprawling heap of manure does very little for any yard. Equestrian properties are very popular and attract a lot of interest, well presented, they sell easily for their asking price. Good luck to all of you coming onto the market, if equestrian estate agents, Fox Grant can be of any help with advice, valuations or marketing, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Fox Grant - The Country and Equestrian Property Specialists.