Going from Urban to Rural Living?
I grew up in the mountains of Colorado and was raised on the back of a horse. With access to thousands of acres of open space to explore I developed a sense of independence, a character trait that has helped me throughout my life. I always wanted my son to have similar experiences to call his own. When he turned 13, I was finally in a position where I could considered buying rural property in Colorado. After searching for horse property for sale in Colorado, we found the perfect little house on a few acres. Just enough room for two horses, a handful of chickens and a lazy black lab named Loretta. As with all moves, when you look back you tell yourself “the next time I move, I will remember to do this or that.” That is what this article is all about. My set of MUST’s to remember when you are considering buying rural property and move from urban life. Especially if you are moving to a equestrian property for the first time.
1. Water. Well or city water aside — take a look at where the water spigots are placed. Now consider sub-freezing weather, frozen hoses and water tanks. Is the spigot easy to get to with one hose? (You really don’t want to drain and keep more than one hose thawed at any given time!) Is the spigot line buried below the frost line? The last thing you want to do in winter weather is bucket water from your kitchen sink to the loafing shed for the horses because the spigot isn’t doing it’s job. Next time I will pay attention to water spout locations & cold weather durability.
2. Electricity. Do the outbuildings all have electricity wired out to them? If not, do they need it? A lot can be said for the sheer greatness of a tank heater and a light bulb in the colder months. My loafing shed & chicken coop are both without electricity. I found a quick and and inexpensive fix by running romex from the garage out to the loafing shed (luckily both are close to each other). This will get me into the warmer months when I can bury a line properly with the help of an electrician. Next time I move (if I ever decided to do that again) I will make sure all my outbuildings that house animals are equipped with electric before heading into the colder months. This is a must!
3. Be Social. I found myself signing my life away to fulfill a dream of buying rural property and to have some elbow room. To look at the window and see a pasture on not what my neighbor was watching on t.v. We are however social creatures. Get out and meet your neighbors, head into town and talk to the local business owners. My neighbors turned out to own the local auto shop. When my car broke down, they drove it in, fixed it and the brought it back to me! Trust me, as soon as I can do something neighborly to pay it forward I will! That is what small town life is all about, enjoying the solitude and the solidarity. When you are considering buying rural property, find a Realtor that is familiar with the Colorado real estate market and the local community. If you are looking for ranch or mountain land in Colorado I highly recommend Colorado’s land and ranch expert, Dave Banzhaf.
4. Enjoy. The most import item on my list is simple. Enjoy the life rural living brings to the family. My son and I clean pens, fix the fences (all to often) and feed together every day. This creates the ultimate time to check in and see how his life is doing, while teaching him responsibility and empathy to care for animals. I couldn’t be happier and with the right local Colorado real estate you can easily buy the perfect rural property in Colorado!
Submitted by Andrea Maxwell, guest writer, newly found expert on buying rural property & new small acreage home owner