Buyers and sellers of farm or equestrian land have unique needs when it comes to real estate. Because of their individual and often complex requirements, it’s important that they partner with a realtor who has expertise within this specific industry.
Burck Stevens not only understands real estate, but he also knows how to use the land. After all, his nickname is “The Land Man.” Perhaps this is what makes him a premier equestrian and farm land agent with United Country Real Estate in the Leipers Fork area of Franklin, TN.
His own knowledge and expertise has come firsthand from owning his own farm for ten years. Burck can look at a piece of land and know how to use it best, and he guides buyers through all the steps of not only real estate but the new responsibilities that come from owning farm or equestrian land. “It’s important to help buyers visualize how to use a property to its full potential and get specialized financing for farms,” says Burck.
Buyers are usually looking for peace and quiet with some privacy and a chance to enjoy being close to nature. Many are looking for a property with fencing, a water supply for animals like a creek or a pond, as well as a barn. The typical acreage has a wide range as well with different needs, from a small property of 5-10 acres to a large farm of 50+ acres. Each piece of land has its benefits and obstacles, so it’s important that an expert guides buyers through the process. Burck recommends working with a realtor with local connections so he or she knows what’s coming on the market, even if it’s not available yet.
Sellers should work with an experienced realtor as well. According to Burck, “A skilled realtor or broker will know how to stage the properties and help them look their best as well as what improvements would help the sale.” Dealing with these equestrian and farm properties on a regular basis, the real estate agent knows what the property is actually worth. Burck says that pricing a property correctly is the most critical element to selling it. If sellers are overreaching with their price, not only will it take longer to sell, but also buyers may not be able to get financing.
Here are the top five requirements buyers or sellers of a farm or equestrian property should look for with a realtor.
A good listener. A good agent will actually listen to what the client wants. “You can find out pretty quickly if you spend time with your agent whether they are listening to what you want,” Burck says.
Experience with these types of properties. Out of town or inexperienced agents don’t know enough about land issues from fencing and barns to water and animals. A real estate agent from the city is not going to be able to look at a property and know its potential and pitfalls. Also, an experienced agent can help a seller price the property so it will sell.
A marketing plan. Sellers should ask their agent what their plans are for utilizing social media and other websites to market a property. “It’s not just MLS anymore,” Burck says. “A good agent needs to utilize everything from Facebook to Trulia, Zillow, and even Craigslist.” He also lists properties on other websites such as Country Homes.
Willing to go the extra mile. An agent should help get the buyer or seller what they need when they need it. Burck has resources available for his clients, from financing to contractors, in order to assist in the purchase and ownership of farm or horse properties.
Advice about owning the property. Many buyers are purchasing farm or equestrian property for the first time. Burck’s ten years of experience with his own farm property can help buyers know what owning the property will entail, from general upkeep to potential repairs or project ideas.
The market is hot right now for these types of properties, according to Burck. No doubt that part of the reason is that Middle Tennessee is a beautiful place to live. Since 2009, prices have climbed steadily, and now it has shifted to a seller’s market. What that means for buyers and sellers alike is that they need a qualified real estate agent to help them navigate. There are a lot of steps between an offer and sold. An experienced agent will smooth the path for clients, turning dreams to reality.