Boarding Price Increase - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 42 Old 12-02-2011, 12:49 AM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: North Texas
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Hay is wicked expensive.. $50 just barely covers the extra hay cost per horse.. that doesn't even cover the $2 price increase per bag of feed. $600 for board isn't unheard of here in Texas.

If you are upset at the board prices... just calmly express your concerns to the barn owner. I would also look at other boarding facilities and their prices.
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post #12 of 42 Old 12-02-2011, 02:03 AM
Join Date: Oct 2011
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All I can say is.... Glad I'm not applying to grad schools in TX! Good luck :(
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post #13 of 42 Old 12-04-2011, 02:29 AM
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Georgia
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Where I live 600 is pretty middle of the board, but you probably wont have pasture or more than one arena. There is a dressage barn not to far away that charges $1300 per month! But the top quality jumper barns start at $700ish. I'd love to find a good place for $600! But I live in the middle of the suburbs, and good land is worth a fortune here.
Hay has been real expensive this year and the cost of your BO's hay orders could be $1000+ more dollars then they have been.
I'd talk to her, calmly, about your concerns. She can't do anything about it if you don't say something.
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post #14 of 42 Old 12-04-2011, 02:51 AM
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Skagit County, WA
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WOW, we havent had any hay issues that I know of. We buy locally in Skagit County WA and all prices are the same, full care board is 250 to 450 if you want to get fancy ;)
I would try and move them, even if you have to go a little farther out just have to weigh the board for the new place with the addition gas cost against your current board cost.
Or maybe move the two that you arent training with as much to a less expensive barn, one that is safe though not one of those others you discribed ick!
good luck!
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post #15 of 42 Old 12-04-2011, 12:01 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Washington State
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It's fascinating how prices differ so much in different areas. My mom pays $600 a month for full care at a barn with an outdoor and indoor arena, turnout in large grassy fields with buddies, and top class care. An hour and a half away where I'm attending college, it's $400 for pretty much all of the same.
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post #16 of 42 Old 12-04-2011, 12:43 PM
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: OK
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Until the drought drove my feed costs through the roof I only charged $250 for full care. But now, instead of costing me $100/month to feed a horse well, it's pretty much at least tripled and that's not including shavings, water, salt, and so on.

Because of the drought, I no longer have 'pasture' so even the 'pasture' horses are getting fed like the barn horses to make sure they stay up to good weight and healthy. The only difference now between the barn horses and the pasture horses is a stall.

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post #17 of 42 Old 12-19-2011, 09:17 AM
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Gatesville, TX
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Wow...thats alot for boarding, living where we do I think the going rate is 300-350 for full care, and closer to austin about 450. I guess the next logical question to ask your BO is, when/if the hay rates go back down because they will unless theres another drought year, will she lower the boarding costs back down at that time?
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post #18 of 42 Old 12-19-2011, 11:45 AM
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Location: OK
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I just hit the local 'crap' auction last week to see what I could find for hay, and what the prices are.

Round bales, appx 1200 lbs, of the worst hay I've ever seen, not sure I would feed it to a cow: $170/bale

Last spring, $15/bale for the really poor stuff, $25 for good horse hay

Local Prairie grass small bales, 50 lbs, full of seed heads and weeds: $9.50/bale

I quit feeding local prairie grass because the farmers cut too low and it's dusty, full of trash and weeds and has these little STICKER things that get in your clothes and you might as well just throw them out when you're done feeding because you'll never get all the junk out. Last spring was selling for $2 or less/bale.

LOCAL alafalfa which means possibility of blister beetles: $13/bale
Out of state alfalfa = no blister beetles: $16/bale
Both alfalfas were 50 lb bales

12 bales of Orchard grass (we normally can't even get that down here): $12/bale, 50 lb bales

Nice clean Bermuda grass, 50 lb bales: $15/bale

I bought all the ought of state alfalfa, the orchard grass and about 50 bermuda bales just for insurance and to try to avoid the price of buying a 4th truck load this season.

10 alfalfa = $160
12 orchard = $144
50 bermuda = $750
Total = $1050

Last year the alfalfa might have cost me $60, I wouldn't have gotten the orchard and the bermuda would have cost me about $3/bale so $150, total $210. I bought a total of 72 bales of hay which will last me abut 14 days.

On top of that, I buy 2 pallets of Strategy per month at $16/bag, $1280 total and then there's salt which is $5/50lb bag, I use 2 of those.

Bulk shavings when I can get them are around $450 truckload and I'll use a truckload/month, if I can't get them then I have to buy bagged by the pallet at $7/bag, $350/pallet and I'll use 2 pallets just to rebed all the stalls after I strip and another pallet for freshening throughout the month.

I use 12 round bales per month, $2040 total

Oh and my water bill is $300/month
Electric $450/month
Utilities are for barn ops only, not for my house or personal use.

Barn help: $1200/worker

So....too just keep 1 boarded horse here COSTS: appx $576/month and that's with being able to buy BULK shavings, not palletized. I suppose I could feed less or not keep the stalls as clean and not strip out monthly, or not allow the boarders to bathe their horses.....but other than that, not sure where I could cut costs and still maintain the level of care I want to provide and the boarders expect. On the months I can't get a truckload of shavings, I eat the difference, I don't raise my fees.

So, do I do like most barns and cut the Strategy and tell you that from now on you have to provide your own grain? Or do you prefer the convenience that I provide everything and you only write 1 check/month and don't have to go to the feed store? And if I cut the grain, will you really see that much savings because then my barn workers have to feed different horses different types of feed in different amounts, and that will take longer so my costs will go up?

Where can YOU suggest I cut back to avoid a rate hike, what level of care can you live with if I start cutting things? I'd love to be able to make some money again, as you can see, there's not any profit in what I'm doing right now.

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post #19 of 42 Old 12-19-2011, 12:06 PM
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Aye, yi, yi, I knew it was bad in Texas, but $12.00 a bale for plain old grass mix hay?!

Over the weekend, I got 50 huge bales of the prettiest grass mix hay for $3.50 a bale. Sure, I had to load and unload it myself, but the supplier is only 13 miles from my house, and her bales run 50-75 pounds each.
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Last edited by Speed Racer; 12-19-2011 at 12:14 PM.
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post #20 of 42 Old 12-19-2011, 12:45 PM
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Here's some really simple math -

1 full size horse eats 2/3 of bale - one full bale of hay per day, or 20 - 30 bales per month. If the price of hay goes up 3.50 - 5.00 per bale; that's your $100./month increase right there.

I suspect that there's a feed increase as well, because grain prices have gone up 25 % or more in my area.

I think it's highly likely that your BO is doing exactly what she says she's doing - raising prices just enough to cover her cost increase. So the condition of the arenas and the jumps really isn't relevant, this is about basic care. I also suspect that gradually rising costs that haven't been passed on to the boarders have eaten up the BO's capital improvement budget.

If you can confirm with other people locally that the price of hay has changed that much, then you have to assume that this is legitimate.

If another facility offers you roughly the same care and service for less, look carefully: either they get a cost break on a key commodity (grow their own hay, have a deal with a sawmill for shavings, etc.) or they're cutting corners somewhere on care.

But you do have my sympathy, I can't imagine paying that kind of board bill. Yikes!
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