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This topic contains 16 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  G & S 9 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 17 total)
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  • Lea Original Poster Lea
    Topics Started: 1Replies Posted: 0

    Hi! I’m new to the forums, so forgive me if I don’t do this right :)

    I’ve been taking lessons for a few months now, and I’ve decided that I want a horse of my own.
    Should I lease out a horse, or should I buy one?

    wyoenglishrider wyoenglishrider
    Topics Started: 4Replies Posted: 101

    Hi Lea! Welcome to the forum–it is a happy place :)
    I think there are so many factors to consider—when you say you have been taking lessons for just a few months, are you brand new to the horse world or getting back into it after a break? Are your parents supportive of this decision or perhaps you are ‘out of the house’ & the financial responsibility will all fall to you? Do you plan on continueing your lessons? Do you have a good, safe place to board a horse? I guess a little more info is needed to help you, although my 1st reaction would be-continue your lessons to see if the commitment is there once summer is over & fall & winter hit—-owning a horse is a big commitment & a year round one, not just when the weather is great! :) Let us know–

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    Choosing a horse is a commitment as important (maybe even more so) as choosing a spouse. Don’t buy a horse just to have one – when you find THE horse, you will know. What is your discipline? There is a lot more to being owned by a horse than just riding, and as your skill set increases, a horse that would suit you now may not be able to do things you will want to do later. Even if you board at a truly great place, there will be a lot to learn about taking care of your horse, how to recognize potential health issues, what to feed and why (you should know this even if you are not feeding yourself), how to groom, hoof care, ground manners, and on and on for infinity.

    It can be the greatest pleasure you will ever know, or it could become a nightmare. Take your time, ride a lot of different horses, and welcome to the wonderful world of being loved forever by the horse that is perfect for you.

    It is never the horse's fault

    G & S
    Topics Started: 16Replies Posted: 249

    Leasing is not a bad way to go for a first horse. Just make sure you choose a horse that is right for you, not one that happens to be conveniently located, just as you need to chose the right horse to buy. And you may want to have a pre-leasing vet exame done, just as you would do a pre-purchase vet check to make sure the horse is sound & suitable for you and the type of riding you plan to do, and that you have a written lease agreement that spells out who is responsible for what.

    Mapale Mapale
    Topics Started: 4Replies Posted: 421

    Don’t buy a horse unless you have the commitment to properly keep him. That’s not just finances, that’s TIME, too. Horses aren’t a hobby, you can’t prop them up in the corner like a tennis racquet, or shut them down like a computer. They are 24/7 just like you, and they continue having experiences with or without you. Even if you board, you are the person responsible for the safety, health, emotional well-being, and condition of your horse.

    That said, leasing is a great option if you are just starting out and want to see if horses are right for you. Look for a horse who has a lot of experience/training in the discipline in which you are interested. A good horse is a great teacher, and it will likely cost more, but be worth the extra cash in how quickly you can learn. A good horse is a must. Don’t ride trails with an untrained race horse, don’t try to do eventing with a short gaited horse, don’t try endurance with a thoroughbred, don’t do reining with a draft horse. Horses are bred and trained with purpose, pick a healthy one that suits yours. Do your homework and ride a few before you decide.

    If you are a person who gets attached to your animals, you might want to lease one that has an option to buy. Just like anything worthwhile in life, it takes hard work and research. And if you get that right horse, it will take all your self-discipline to live up to being the person your horse thinks you are.

    Best wishes on your search – post a photo if you get one!

    Alois Podhajsky: “When I hear somebody talk about a horse being stupid, I figure it’s a sure sign that animal has outfoxed them. ...

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    Regarding leasing, it can be a heartbreak to fall in love with someone else’s horse. I did it, and was very, very lucky, as the owners ended up giving him to me after about a year. They are exceptional people, and cared more about the horse’s happiness than anything else.

    It is never the horse's fault

    pheets pheets
    Topics Started: 5Replies Posted: 475

    Excellent advice here for you, Lea, and my version of it is pretty much the same.

    Just to give you a ball park figure, I just bought a horse in February. Granted, he was out of state and our winter here forced me to board him so I chose to keep him where he was til I could get him up here. He is home in my yard now (YAY!!, LOVING him!!) and to date, because of board, farrier, chiropractics, massage (he is slightly contracted in front and pulling his shoes resulted in very short feet, sore body), vet for Coggins and Spring Shots and finally his continued training (baby: he is only 8), I have so far spent close to $10K (inc price of horse). The cost can vary significantly but minimal care will cost: period. Whether one boards, or home keeps, there is NO free ride. YOU are the responsible party as well as advocate for YOUR horse, no matter where he is, no matter who is doing the care/management and regardless of cost. When you own a Pone, you OWN it ALL.

    After only a few months of lessons, there has been not enough time yet to introduce one to the nuances and tribulations of horse ownership and the finances that support it. My suggestion for the OP would be to continue with lessons for a full year, then lease. Reason being, the more you ride, the more you learn. Hang around the barn, offer to do a few chores, get familiar with the CARE/MANAGEMENT end of horsemanship. Riding is a very small SMALL part of that big picture.

    I know this might not be what you want to hear, but in the long run, with more time spent in the general company of horses, you will better know what you want and don’t want in a horse and be better versed in recognizing it, what your limits are financially as well as at what skill level, what you actually want to do in the future with Pone. They are not used cars, they don’t sell the same way. Buying/taking on a horse is more comparable to adopting a child. Take it THAT seriously, be THAT ready before you buy. IF you decide to lease this summer, know the lessor, be SURE to understand ALL points in the contract, be SURE that there IS a contract. Protect yourself, and your charge.

    I hope you will continue with your lessons, on the horse as well as in the barn. I have been riding for over 55 years and am currently looking for an instructour for myself and my lovely new boy : ) The learning never stops!

    Welcome to the world of Horses, Lea, and to the Forum! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do : D

    Sure there's right and wrong but mostly there's just a whole lotta different.

    Nikkers
    Topics Started: 2Replies Posted: 4

    Before my first horse or horse leased, I worked at a barn cleaning stalls and tack in exchange for lessons. My parents would not buy me a horse. So I ran ads everywhere, to exercise horses for people that did not have time. This was back in the 80’s ( not to give up my age or anything ) I had such a response to the ads, I had more horses to ride than time. By the time my parents realized I was very serious about horses, I did not need them to buy me one. Most people tried to give me the horses I was riding for them or gave me a portion of the horses sale. Since I was still in school and could not afford to pay for a horse on my own. My favorite horse was going to be put up for sale , the one I showed hunter / jumpers on. I was upset I loved him so much. My parents made an arrangement with his owners, behind my back,to give him to me and they would pay for his costs, What a huge surprise that was for me ! I was one happy teenager!!! I have owned a horse ever since. Yet i no longer have the energy to have more than 2 at a time. Like everyone says they are a commitment and I suggest having a “just in case” bank account. Just in case. :) and expect it to get emptied at some point in your horses lifetime.

    ohminsun
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 7

    Before my first horse or horse leased, I worked at a barn cleaning stalls and tack in exchange for lessons. My parents would not buy me a horse. So I ran ads everywhere, to exercise horses for people that did not have time. This was back in the 80’s ( not to give up my age or anything ) I had such a response to the ads, I had more horses to ride than time. By the time my parents realized I was very serious about horses, I did not need them to buy me one. Most people tried to give me the horses I was riding for them or gave me a portion of the horses sale. Since I was still in school and could not afford to pay for a horse on my own. My favorite horse was going to be put up for sale , the one I showed hunter / jumpers on. I was upset I loved him so much. My parents made an arrangement with his owners, behind my back,to give him to me and they would pay for his costs, What a huge surprise that was for me ! I was one happy teenager!!! I have owned a horse ever since. Yet i no longer have the energy to have more than 2 at a time. Like everyone says they are a commitment and I suggest having a “just in case” bank account. Just in case. :) and expect it to get emptied at some point in your horses lifetime.

    I completely agree with having the “just in case bank account”! It WILL be emptied at some point! I would suggest continuing with your lessons and looking into shareboarding or half-leasing something (or full leasing) until you know you have the time to devote. I shareboarded two horses prior to buying my first one. When I decided to eventually put him down due to medical issues, I did buy a second one, and it happened after only two months. However, be prepared that your search for the “perfect” horse may take a long time! Like the others have said, you’ll “know” when it’s a good one for you- you’ll click. That being said, the one for you may be the first one you look at, or it may be the twentieth one. Be patient and it will come :)

    --
    오민선 | MinSun Oh

    riding for Christ riding for Christ
    Topics Started: 1Replies Posted: 118

    You should buy one. That’s great that you have been taking lessons! 😀 I agree with Joe Joe on this one, falling in love with another persons horse is kind of heart breaking.

    IrishMelody IrishMelody
    Topics Started: 7Replies Posted: 27

    Are any of the lesson horses at your barn available for lease or half lease? This is a great way to have a horse of your “öwn” without buying and taking on the huge financial future. Horses are like having children that can’t tell you where it hurts or why they don’t like their food. And just a few months into lessons, you probably are getting a big case of horse fever. Don’t worry, it’s sometimes a lifelong affliction you can’t get rid of, even if you stop riding. Hahaha. But it’s a good fever to have. Whichever you decide to do, involve your trainer in looking at horses. This person best knows your riding ability and what kind of horse would suit you best, plus can help you avoid a bad horse or a bad deal.

    Congrats on your riding lessons, its a pretty great world to be a part of. And the SmartPak forums are chocked full of great advice and great people who are willing to share it.

    G & S
    Topics Started: 16Replies Posted: 249

    I skimmed through the replies, and I don’t think anyone else mentioned one key factor in the lease/buy equation. The horse that will be a good fit for you now, with only a few months of riding lessons, will very likely NOT be the right horse 18 months to 2 years from how. Right now, you will need a well trained beginner horse, but in 18 months to 2 years, you will have a better handle on exactly what type of riding you want to do, and whether or not you want to show, and you will be a much better rider ready for something a bit more challenging, but that will also be a horse you are not yet ready to safely handle & ride. Selling a horse you have outgrown can be as difficult as having a lease end. Except with a lease, you know the terms & that this horse is a starter horse, not a forever until death do you part heart horse. If you do lease, do so with the full knowledge that this is a starter horse, because keeping a firm grasp on that fact will make it easier to return that horse to his/her owner at the end of the lease, knowing the next horse may well be that magical forever heart horse.

    paisleypaint paisleypaint
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1

    I really think that you should ride for a year or 2 more before considering buying a horse. You need to know that your not going to lose interest. But you should looking into half leaseing or horse and then full leaseing so you know that you have time for the horse. Also since you have only been riding for a short amount of time there is a good chance you will outgrow the horse you get now skill wise, my advice would be stick with lessons a little bit longer and take your time looking for a horse and know that you are committed time and money wise. Also asking your trainer is the best thing you can do since she can guide you in what is right. I’d say stick to the lessons and for now look for a lease horse :) quarter,half, or full

    blondeandbay blondeandbay
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1

    I would definitely recommend leasing before you buy, especially if it’s only been a few months. This will give you the opportunity to see if you and a specific horse (or multiple if need be) are a good match. I’ve been riding about a year and a half, and currently lease a five year old OTTB. When I graduate next spring the plan is to buy him, but financially and time-wise, I can’t swing it right now. But leasing is an amazing option because you can have a ton of time to ride and gain experience, all while not having to worry about vet, farrier, feed, etc. bills! Example: I have a half lease on Cayman which gives me three days a week of riding and then I have my lessons on Saturdays, which means I ride four days a week! And depending on your barn owner (and your own schedule), you might be able to work off your lease (that’s what I do). Definitely recommend leasing before you buy!

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    blondieandbay – I agree with much of what you say, but leases can vary greatly. When I leased Joe Joe, I paid all his expenses, including vet, farrier and dentist. I could ride him whenever and wherever I chose, and could even have moved him to another farm. The terms of any lease should be carefully studied before signing.

    It is never the horse's fault

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