One very critical thing I don't think anyone mentioned..a very secure feed storage area preferably with doors that securely latch and are secure from the houdini horse types out there. While escapes may not be extremely common, even once when they break into the feed room is more than too much.
Also, if allowing all manners of feed, again, secure containers that are well labeled, preferably with a perm marker.
Horses at my barn get round bales- personally I like that, as my guy is the bottom of the pecking order, and if it is getting near feeding time it seems like that is when he got picked on! They have 3 round bale feeders in our pasture so the horses can rotate and no one gets pushed aside. (when they were put back on round bales, eating off the ground, for a short spell, my daughters boy sand colicked... so that makes me nervoud!)
Ditto on having automatic waterers... we have them and its great. Love them.
Also Ditto on trailer parking!
As to your feed question I prefer hay and grain be fed from the ground if my horses are outside. It personally doesn't matter to me too much how nice the ground looks because I've yet to see one of mine get sick eating off of muddy ground! If anything I've seen a lumpy ground slow a fast horse who chokes because he bolts his food down enough to let it settle down the right pipe. :) Round bales are nice but once they're out my gelding disappears into them and doesn't come out for days! Automatic waterers are a godsend! One thing I forgot to mention: I would love to see another boarding place care for the horse with special circumstances. My mare is older now and can't be outside 24/7. She's outside most of the times but when she wants in she needs in (or she busts down fences lol) especially in the winter. I like to keep her on outside board because that way she's out more, but it would be nice to see another place that would bring her in when she needs in and just charge me a stall fee, heck I'd even come out and muck it. I'm having a lot of trouble locating another barn that will do so. Just a thought! ;)
Incitatus- you would not have to worry about that. Every boarder horse that was on the property would be treated like my own, and I expect a lot for my horses. They are not massively spoiled, but the work hard enough during the day that they deserve to be taken care of. I don't want many horses boarded- maybe around 10 or so, because I have 5 of my own, and I will be the one doing the chores and looking after them, and I want to have enough time for individualized attention. (Example- if horses need brushed down after being out in the mud, I want to have plenty of time to do it instead of worrying about 50 more horses.)
Those box stalls are nice. The tack sheds looked a tad small. Okay for a person with one horse. Are you allowing a multiple horse discount? Here are some concerns..
1) open all hours .. will allow easier access for thieves.
2) outside trainers.. conflicts with training times, complaints from the trainers or them telling you how to .. conflict with more than one outside trainer,, gossip .. drama..
3) outside trainers with poor ethics or inhumane methods.
4) Insurance liability. Proof of bonds or insurance from the outside trainer?
5) pens with open stalls ? Is there an option for this ? And size of outdoor pen. I like a min of 18 - 20 ft wide and 36 long with the first 12 ft being covered or an open stall.
6) cleaning stalls/ amount of shavings or straw ? Problems if a person wants straw bedding vs shavings ? Or extra bedding ?
7) locks on tack sheds.. make sure there is some master key in case of fire so if there is time to remove items it can be done. Adn a clause about fires, and have bolt cutters.
8) locks on stalls.. allowed or not ? But add a clause of in case of fire, and have some good bolt cutters handy.
9) fire extinguishers ?
10) outside dogs ... NO . To big of liability.
11) kids.. and supervision..needs addressed.
12) no tying in barn ailse. Period. Have outside tie racks.
13) no unsuperivsed turnouts of horses. Don't turn the horse out in an arena and leave, don't leave a horse tied up in its stall etc. or left in a tie rack.
14) Boarder meets their own Vet . You can get stuck with a Vet bill.. and better if they meet the farrier themselves. ( you wont have to hear it if there is a problem) and at some point there will be a problem.
I never had an issue with giving a supplement that was supplied by the boarder, but if they constantly ran out, I would say no, you do it yourself. If they had wanted me to supply it, I would have increased the cost ( because that's pretty lazy to expect someone else to go the feed store ). Time = money .
About the hours- I have never had (nor anyone else that I have talked to) had a problem with thieves. That's one good thing about living in the country. My driveway is nearly 1/2 mile long, and everything from the main gate in is wired so hot that if someone throws a stick on my property I will have video evidence of it. I am not a paranoid freak, we just have a lot of good equipment and nice horses, and I don't want any problems.
The trainers is one of my main problems. Not sure if I should hire my own, or let people choose. I don't want to force people to one trainer-just because I like him/her doesn't mean someone else will. And I wonder if there could be some kind of chart made to sign up for a 'lesson time' with a trainer? Or if that would even work.
And pens with stalls- definitely yes. About the shavings/straw-either would be fine. Right now my horse stalls have both. Rubber mats on the bottom, then shavings, and straw on top. (I have a few picky horses, and straw is dirt cheap where I am.)
About the locks- on tack lockers, for sure. And I would just have the master or a second copy in case of emergency. On the stalls- I am not to sure. I don't want people messing with other's horses, but I don't think that I would have any problem keeping that straight.
I agree with no tying in the barn isle, and the turnout of horses. And the boarder-meets-their-own-vet is a good idea to. Farrier as well. Also, I want the boarders to trust my vet and farrier on their own accord, instead of just taking my word for it.