First in an occasional series! I'll obscure some things and use stock photos for the houses, but will try to faithfully represent what's going into the decision making process
The basics: 4 bed, 2.5 bath 1904 farmhouse renovated top to bottom, 2,500 square feet with 1.25 acres, new 20x40 barn on the property. Public water, septic, oil heat + wood stove.
The budget (1 being bottom, 5 being top): 3.5 - on the expensive end but well within our maximum (which is way less than the bank's maximum)
The pros: Every single interior of this house is to die for. It looks like it came off the screen of HGTV. Droolworthy kitchen (and I do not say that lightly), ridiculous bathroom, spacious master suite, walk in closets, you name it.
The 20x40 barn is new, in excellent shape, and has never been used for horses. The acreage is behind the house and could probably fence in 1 full acre of pasture. It's zoned appropriately for agriculture, and the lot is of sufficient size. Land is open, relatively level, and backs up to open land.
Not that this is a concern for me right now, really, but the school district is outstanding - one of the best in the county. The location is definitely closer to town than many other places and would keep my commute to a minimum.
The cons: It's definitely as small as a horse property could possibly be. There's no chance of rolling grass pasture here; at best, I'd plant hardy grass and basically create a dry lot.
The house itself is right up against the neighbors on both sides, and is on a busy road close to a busy intersection, set maybe 50'-75' back.
Having the house done to the nines is maybe not so much a good thing? It's actually done more or less to my taste, but there's no room for me to put my stamp anywhere, unless I take out something in perfectly good condition.
The maybes: The realtor is figuring out whether it's possible to purchase additional acreage out back. If anything could be added or purchased for a reasonable price, this jumps way up. Need soil analysis, and some fencing cost estimates, as well as a lot more in-depth thinking about how I want to keep horses going forward, which applies to all properties, basically!