Possibly opening a co-op, self care...what to do?!?
I have been working at a barn professionally managing it for about 3 years now. I currently co-own 3 horses with my aunt and sister. We keep them at my aunts home but we don't have alot of barn space (only a rough run-in barn with hay and tack storage) and only wooded paddocks (about 4 acres worth) with minimal grass and have a bad drainage issue.
We were very recently offered a really great oppertunity to lease a 10-12 stall barn and hayloft with 16 acres of paddocks and hay fields. The owner has offered us a 4 year lease at $200 a month. We pay about that for hay monthly so figure grazing alone will help offset costs somewhat.
Obviously there is more room then we could ever use, we plan on getting maybe one more horse in the near future and there is a slight possibility for a pony in the next few years as the kids get older and more into riding.
So my thing is would it be feasible to even consider opening a co-op or self-care boarding sort of barn? Not to profit, Im not considering 'boarding' other peoples horses, more like a few like-minded people to share the costs of keeping a nice barn or at the very least self-care to help offset the cost of rent..The owner is of course ok with us doing something like this..
We are in Upstate NY and there is a slight demand for boarding in my area. Here you either pay $500+ for full board at a nice facility or $200-300 for self-care/full board at some of the crappy barns in the area. There is even a barn a road over from me that charges $275 monthly for a 8X8 stall and turnout in a 6 acre pasture with 10+ other horses, you supply your own feed and hay and they manage to get boarders.
Just something I have been tossing around in my mind, we have an appt. Saturday to go check out the barn fully, have been there a few times but this time we will stay a few hours and walk the fence, check out the barn from top to bottom, talk to the owner and real estate agent ect. And possibly sign the lease...
Also what would the insurance risks be? We have basic insurance on our horses/current property that will transfer if we move but how would it work with horses that are not ours? Just confused on the insurance end of this as well..