6 Expert Tips on Private Hunting Land for Sale in Colorado

Oct 19, 2021

Purchasing a hunting ranch in Colorado is for many the culmination of a lifelong dream. Would-be ranchers long for the wide open spaces, a chance to reconnect with nature and family, and the ability to really get away from it all.

It's easy to get carried away by the beauty of the land and the fantasy of bagging a five-point elk on your own property. An appreciation of the landscape, privacy shared with family and friends, and the love of outdoor activities are primary reasons for investing in this type of real property.

Mule deer in wintery forsest.

However, there are important financial and tax benefits to making an investment in a luxury ranch. With a little research, you may find out the benefits of owning ranch land in Colorado are more than purely sentimental.

Before you decide to go after that perfect plot of hunting land for sale, investigate these other factors so that you can be sure the ranch in question is truly the answer to all of your dreams.


Like any real estate investment, the key is location.

Choosing a great location for your ranch could help you to yield up to 3 percent of income annually on the property.

There are many ways to make money from your ranch, from horse boarding and AirBnB to raising cattle or crops.

Well located ranches are also considered recession-proof as well.

For an ideal location, your ranch should have significant acreage. Distance away from major roadways will enhance the privacy and inherent bucolic beauty.

Some ranch owners are lucky enough to own property that abuts National Forest or park land, which extends the undeveloped landscape and assures that protection for years to come.

Waterway Access

When researching private hunting land for sale, consider the other recreational activities that could be enjoyed on the land.

Teaching your children and grandchildren fishing is an amazing legacy to pass down to future generations. You may also be able to enjoy swimming, boating, and waterskiing.

Freestone streams, lakes and other bodies of water will enhance the recreational and financial value of your property.

However, be aware that these attractions may come with visitors. Public access laws may allow people to come onto your property to fish in water technically located on your ranch. Be sure to know what the particularities are when it comes to accessing the creeks and rivers on your property.

Conservation Easements

The thought that your land may be protected by government conservation efforts might feel like an encroachment. On the contrary, these easements work to your benefit.

Purchasing hunting land subject to a conservation easement may actually improve the value of your property.

Heard of elk grazing in mountain meadow.

These easements protect land from development. So, if you plan on leaving a large portion of your land undeveloped anyway, the easement will make the property more appealing to future buyers who also enjoy the pristine wilderness.

Some ranch owners have donated a portion of their land subject to a conservation easement to an appropriate charity. This provides additional tax benefits.

You may not ever be able to build or work on these sections of your property, but you will preserve the natural beauty that enticed you to acquire the private ranch in the first place.

Agricultural Tax Breaks

In addition to recreation, consider the many ways you can use your land in ways that will provide tax benefits.

The IRS offers tax breaks to ranchers. Depending upon the operations on your ranch, you may be able to take deductions for business expenses like the food and maintenance of cattle and horses. You can also deduct land conservation costs, depreciation of capital losses and some operating losses.

The land might qualify for an agricultural tax exemption. If your land is adjacent to public lands where cattle graze or if you own livestock that grazes on your land, this may entitle you some advantageous tax benefits.

When you are searching for private hunting land for sale, don't forget to take into account other ways that owning and using the property can help your bottom line.

Mineral Rights

Understanding the extent of your property rights is imperative. Before you sign a contract on private hunting land, make sure your survey addresses the rules and obligations concerning activities both on top of the land and underneath it.

Like water access rights, mineral rights do not always automatically belong to whoever owns the land. If someone else has a claim to the potential valuable minerals that may lie under your property, they will be able to drill or mine on it in the future.

Make sure you sew up all of the relevant rights to any minerals discovered now or in the future on the property before you buy. Then, if something is discovered later, you will indeed add greatly to the legacy you will be leaving your children!

Houses and Structures

One of the most important factors in your search when you are on the market for a ranch in Colorado is the quality of the main house. As this may be your residence for at least a few months per year, you will want the interior design and architecture to reflect your personal taste and style.

There are a wide variety of styles used in the interiors of ranch homes, ranging from old-fashioned Western styles to sleek and modern looks.

Some investors may prefer to buy a plot of land with no structures in order to design and build everything themselves from the ground up. This can be a great opportunity to get creative and realize the home you've always wanted.

Consider how you envision using the property. If you plan on entertaining at your Colorado ranch, factor in the expense of restoring and redecorating an older property. If your property is far away from many major highways or retail centers, construction may incur added costs for transporting workers and material.

Make sure you also factor in the costs of the caretaker homes for staff and barns for livestock when you create the operating budget for your private hunting land.

Hunting Land For Sale: A Dream Come True

Once you find the property of your dreams, a whole panorama of opportunity will open up for you.

You will be able to spend valuable time with loved ones, and create business opportunities which benefit you and your community through agriculture, recreation, and tourism. Owning your own ranch in Colorado will make you king of your own domain.

For more information on purchasing your own little piece of paradise, contact us.


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