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Old 12-05-2012, 10:36 AM
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Question for Horse Owners

I am looking for opinions from the horse owners.

I have a barn with dirt floors and a pasture that is surrounded by electrical fencing. No horses, but the people that lived here before us had two. We have been wanting horses, the kids took about two years of private lessons, but right now I don't want to make a financial commtiment.

Today a neighbor came to my husband and said he has a friend looking for a place to keep some horses and if we would be interested in renting our barn and pasture. This is a situation we had actually thought about, especially if my daughters could some how get involved with taking care of the horses, this way I will know if it would be feasible to get two of our own in the future.

How much do people generally charge for barn and pasture rental? The barn is a bare minimum structure, with two stalls, and no doors, one electrical outlet.

What are the risks of doing something like this? What type of rules should we have written down?
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Today a neighbor came to my husband and said he has a friend looking for a place to keep some horses and if we would be interested in renting our barn and pasture. This is a situation we had actually thought about, especially if my daughters could some how get involved with taking care of the horses, this way I will know if it would be feasible to get two of our own in the future.
I would JUMP at the offer - if only at the prospect of making use and earning $$$ from that barn that otherwise would just sit there unused.

Quote:
How much do people generally charge for barn and pasture rental? The barn is a bare minimum structure, with two stalls, and no doors, one electrical outlet.
I think it really depends on what you are providing.

My barn lady went over what exactly goes into my $450/month board bill. That's his stall, daily turnout, feeding 3 times a day (hay and grain), supplements, and keeping an eye on him with the permission to call the vet if there is any reason to.

The barn has hot water, indoor plumbing (bathroom, bath area for the horses, spigots and hoses for refilling water buckets), electric (fans on the horses in summer, heaters going in aisleways in winter, lights), and every boarder has their own pantry sized locker to keep all their stuff.

If this person is doing all the work and care themselves and bringing the hay and grain and so forth... then I would at the very least charge $150/month per horse.

And the more improvements you make to the barn - the more you could reasonably charge. I would definitely use the income from the guy renting the barn towards making improvements every year.

Quote:
What are the risks of doing something like this? What type of rules should we have written down?
Talk to your lawyer.

My barn lady has a form which everyone who works around or rides the horses has to sign - essentially their promise not to sue if any accidents occur on her property.

Barn rules = you need to have set hours that the boarder may come out and visit. You need to make sure they aren't smoking or drinking on your property, etc...
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:06 AM
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Thanks Megora! I wanted to make sure nobody thought we were crazy doing this.

I forgot, I have water out there too. My husband is a carpenter, so he can easily add things needed on the side of the barn that doesn't have stalls, such as lockers etc.

My neighbor is a lawyer, I'll talk to him.
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:12 AM
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I don't know. Some horses are easy to take care of and some are just pistols...breaking out, damaging things. I'd ask some question of whoever has them now.

And if he can't afford to feed them, what will you do. I know you won't watch them suffer. We just paid $10 a bale for hay. 2 horses will eat that in about 1 day. Also, with a minimal barn, where will he store the feed and his supplies, saddles, etc? What is his cleaning routine? Daily? Will he supply buckets, water tank? Do you have reasonable access to a water line from the house? Electricity? Lights? Who is responsible for calling the vet?

And are you willing to care for the horses when he can't: illness, vacation, bad weather. Is he the type to keep asking for more and more until you feel taken for granted? And you need to make sure you have enough liability insurance in case someone gets hurt on your property or by his horses.

For me it would depend on how well you know this person and his ability to buy feed and how *nice* the horses are. For strictly rent and he covers ALL OTHER EXPENSES, I figure about $50 per horse. Here pasture board, with hay and grain included and run-in shelter goes for about $150 to $200 a month per horse. And some people are tacking on a hay surcharge because of the drought.
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:16 AM
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Megora makes good points about smoking and drinking. You'll also need to clarify WHO can come out to visit/ride the horses. You don't want every tom dick and harry friend of his coming over at all hours of the day and night.
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Penny's Mom View Post
I don't know. Some horses are easy to take care of and some are just pistols...breaking out, damaging things. I'd ask some question of whoever has them now.

And if he can't afford to feed them, what will you do. I know you won't watch them suffer. We just paid $10 a bale for hay. 2 horses will eat that in about 1 day. Also, with a minimal barn, where will he store the feed and his supplies, saddles, etc? What is his cleaning routine? Daily? Will he supply buckets, water tank? Do you have reasonable access to a water line from the house? Electricity? Lights? Who is responsible for calling the vet?

And are you willing to care for the horses when he can't: illness, vacation, bad weather. Is he the type to keep asking for more and more until you feel taken for granted? And you need to make sure you have enough liability insurance in case someone gets hurt on your property or by his horses.

For me it would depend on how well you know this person and his ability to buy feed and how *nice* the horses are. For strictly rent and he covers ALL OTHER EXPENSES, I figure about $50 per horse. Here pasture board, with hay and grain included and run-in shelter goes for about $150 to $200 a month per horse. And some people are tacking on a hay surcharge because of the drought.
Thanks! These are great questions for me to ask.

I already have a water spicket at the barn, and the side of the barn that does not have the stalls, does stay dry. My husband can actually build a closet or a room, if need be for more secure space for tack and feed. We actually have about 10 bales hay there from the previous owners but we will get rid of that because it is probably no good.
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Old 12-05-2012, 11:30 AM
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Thanks for bringing up the smoking and drinking. We are not smokers, and don't drink often, so I tend to forget other people may do these things.

I would definitely make rules about who and when goes to the barn.

Funny thing is, my husband has a feeling it is the former owners looking for a place for their horses. Not many people know that we have a set up for horses, because it can't be seen from the road. They moved across the country, but now are back in town in rental property. All the sudden their names are popping up a lot.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:29 PM
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If it is the same owners and they took their horses all the way across the country and back, then you probably have nothing to worry about on the care issue. That's quite a big deal...moving horses like that. Shows a dedication to them.

Good luck with your project. It will give you the hands on experience to make your own decision. You can always add on to the barn when you get your own horse.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:38 PM
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I've never done this...rented a barn..but it seems you are asking all the right questions.

As a mom, I see an opportunity for your daughters to make some money also. If the boarders intend to do all the daily work themselves, perhaps you could establish a fee with them for days when they can't make it out. Then whichever child cares for the horse earns that fee. (I have a teen, and I'm always looking for ways she can earn her own money! )

You might want to talk to your homeowners insurance company too, to see if you should add to your liability level.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:44 PM
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You need a boarding contract, check local feed stores. There are serious liability issues that can arrise from having someones horse on your property if they are hurt, they had someone come over and ride and get hurt or a neighborhood child comes onto your property and is hurt by their horse. As property owner you can be held fully liable in many situations. You will need to post signs, have a contract and possibly special insurance.
Trust me been there done that. Also my neighbor agreed to temporally house another horse. It has now been over six months of them not paying rent or paying for food for the horse and since she did not get a contract that has anything that has clauses for such instances she is fully stuck with no recourse for up to a year and then she can only claim abandment.
Check your local laws they vary, do protect yourself. The income is nice and for self board I would check what local barns charge to set your fee. Spell it out, this if full self care you will provide your horses, daily food water and regular vet and farrier care.
Have them list two back up people that you can approve to care for the horses in case they are unable to. In the event they are unable to come out due to weather etc and you are willing to help, then what will you charge per day to feed and check the water. Around here is 5.00 a day put all this in the contract. Speak to your insurance company before agreeing. My best friends insurance almost dropped her when she took in a boarder without them knowing and she had to get a special insurance rider added to her policy.
I do think it is fun and worthwhile to do this provided you cover your um bum so to speak.
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