Did you dream of living in a horse barn when you were a child? If you're lucky enough to get a position as a barn manager, or to find a barn apartment for rent, that dream could become a reality. But before you move into your first barn apartment, there are a few things that you should know.
Horses Are Loud
If you're a light sleeper, then a barn apartment might not be the best choice for you. Horses are loud, and if your bedroom is positioned above a stall, then you may be able to hear the horse shift around, scratch himself on the walls, and snort or whinny. With time, you'll get used to a lot of the noise, but expect to miss out on some sleep while you initially adjust.
Fire Safety Is SUPER Important
When you're living above a barn filled with hay and shavings, fire safety becomes more important than ever. It's best to not chance lighting candles, and definitely don't smoke in the apartment (or the barn). You'll also want to make sure that smoke detectors are properly positioned and working, and that you have multiple emergency exits.
Barn Apartments Tend to Be Cold
Barn apartments tend to be drafty and cold, so your heating bills may be more than you would expect. Barn apartments often feature high ceilings, and since the barn beneath them is not heated, you don't receive the benefit of having heat rise up to the apartment from beneath you.
You May Sacrifice Privacy
If you'll be living above a busy barn, then expect to sacrifice some of your privacy, especially if you're acting as barn staff or the barn manager. You'll want to clearly differentiate when you are off the clock, and specify who boarders or trainers should contact with issues when you're on the premises but not working.
Rodents Come With the Territory
It's a fact of life that rodents are present in barns. Sometimes, rodents may get into your apartment. While this will be a rare occurrence in a well-made, well-maintained apartment, it can happen. Consider getting a cat and/or setting traps to help keep this issue under control.
When you live above a barn, your life is subjected to the equine emergencies that may occur. Expect to be the first one called when a horse is injured or colicking, or when a horse gets loose and it's all hands on deck. You'll likely have some late night emergencies that quickly change your schedule; it's just part of living above a barn.
Living in a barn apartment can be a fun experience as long as you're prepared for what comes with this unique living situation.