Starting a farm is, in its very essence, very similar to starting any type of business. It will take time and patience, and, most of all; it will take passion and focus.
If you have decided that this is what you want to do, then you should know which are the first steps towards setting up a successful farming business.
Do not rush into anything – this is the first piece of advice everyone will give you. Sit down and think everything through thoroughly. Analyse which are weak points and which are the strong points you have as a business owner.
Furthermore, analyse in detail all the aspects of the land you are going to buy: climate, what kind of agriculture can be practiced there, topographical features, the soil, the plants that grow natively around the farm, etc.
Also, talk to other farmers in the area and try to find out as many details as possible about how they run their own businesses.
All these things will give you an outlay of your business plan. Once you have everything in order, put it down on paper and analyse it once again. See if you have missed anything and which are the areas in which you could improve it. Moreover, decide if you will start a farm based on crops or if it will be based on livestock (or if you want both). Once you are sure of the main points of your business plan, start thinking of your budget and what you can do with it.
The next step is actually purchasing everything you need to start your business. Depending on what you have decided earlier, you will need to shop around for the best deals on animals, crops and equipment. Also, if the land you’re buying does not provide efficient buildings, you may also need to invest in them as well.
If you do set your mind on crop farming, then the equipment you purchase now can make or break your business. Therefore, analyse every aspect of this purchase and do not forget about anything.
One of the most important things you will need is a tractor. Used tractors are the best option out there, especially if you are on a tight budget. Buying the latest piece of farming technology is not always a good idea when you are a start-up, and this is why used tractors make better alternatives.
When looking after used tractors, bear in mind a few things. First of all, decide what will be the main purpose of your tractor and what power it will need to have (and this may depend a lot on the kind of soil your land has).
Also, keep in mind the fact that some of the used tractors out there do not have a power take-off (a PTO), and these ones will not help you very much. Take into consideration the tractor’s age, brand and model. As mentioned before, do not rush and take your time – this is one of the biggest decisions to take when setting up a farming business!
Louisa Jenkins is a freelance blogger. She blogs on a number of topics, and here she offers advice to people thinking of going into the farming industry – covering topics including the purchase of used tractors rather than new ones, and other considerations vital in setting up a farm.