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The road to ranch profitability

Many people who dream of becoming ranchers have visions of a booming business. Then again, they have little knowledge of the extent of work that goal entails. Simply knowing how to take care of cows is one thing, raising cattle and managing the ranch for profit is another.

So if you want to get the most out of your land and make your ranch truly successful, you need to find out exactly how to do it. Here are four steps we listed down to help you in your goal for ranch profitability.

Minimize land and labor costs

A successful rancher spends a big chunk of their money, not on livestock, crops or equipment. Instead, they spend much on overhead expenses. What you pay for your land, including rent, general maintenance, and labor, can quickly eat away at your incoming revenue. If you don’t keep a close watch on your budget and adjust accordingly, you may end up with little to show for your efforts. Consider your options before hiring hands and purchasing land to keep costs low at the offset.


Making a profit means maximizing the use of your resources. For ranchers, this means understanding how the land is used and what can be grown or raised year-round to maintain incoming revenue sources. Consider how you can best utilize any extra space you have and research what you can grow in traditionally difficult seasons. Taking time off just because conditions aren’t ideal can result in a massive loss of time and money that you’ll struggle to recover. Likewise, unused land might as well be non-existent. Raising cattle and crops of a wider range is a simple way to reduce risk.

Concentrate on your successes

One of the core concepts of business is to learn from your mistakes. Failure is certainly a great teacher but knowing what you’re doing right is just as important. Specifically, don’t put all of your focus on what you want your main area of profit to be and actually look at the numbers for guidance. If your preferred project is profitable but not as much as something else you’re undertaking, it may be in your best interest to change gears. On a similar note, don’t do something just because you believe it’s necessary. Ranching is a diverse field that goes beyond livestock and crops.

Analyze business relationships

Ranchers rely on banks for loans, suppliers for equipment and feed, and buyers for livestock and crops. A successful ranch can, over time, evolve and serve those roles to other businesses as well. But regardless of where they stand in the relationship, ranchers can do themselves a big favor by forming more meaningful ties with colleagues in the industry. Part of this process means listening to the other parties and making it easier for them to do business with you. When it comes to buying and selling, it’s rare that anyone is irreplaceable. That’s why you need to make it as easy as possible for others to work with you.

More than the labor itself, a successful ranch requires keen analysis. This is a skill you can develop over time, but the sooner you begin to practice it the better your financial standing can be.

Start your journey to successful ranching by checking out Northern Colorado ranches for sale with us at Horse Property Deals. Whether it’s a ranch you want or farm land for sale in Northern Colorado, we have the best options at your disposal. Call me, Claudia Hewell, at 970-672-6876 or email me at Claudia(at)HorsePropertyDeals(dotted)com so we can discuss your real estate requirements.

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