Hi guys! I'm really new here.....I have wanted a horse for about 8 years. I'm working for money and I actually am making great progress. I know that you need a LOT of money and a steady flow of money to get a horse. I realized that the only way I could pay for a horse was if I could work at the stable to reduce board or to work in exchange of board. I wouldn't have enough money to pay for 500 dollars a month. (that's the price of boarding around here) I was wondering if you could give me some tips about how to talk to and convince the barn owners to let me do a deal like that! Thanks :)
If the barn you want to board at is open to volunteers, then ask if you can volunteer, it really helps to get an idea of what the barn is like and help them know if you are competent or not. If you work hard enough, and depending if they need anyone, they would probably let you work off a certain amount of the boarding fee.
Most of it really depends on the barn owner and if they have enough of a business to hire people, or depend on people like you that want to work in exchange for lessons/board. I don't think talking would get you very far if someone doesn't need/want to do a deal like that. That's all that I've learned so far, I'm sure other forum members will have better ideas though!
You should go check to see what feed cost. Whatever it is they feed . Go get prices. Figure the cost of feed per month . You may be able to see if they would allow you to work off the difference . Be prepared to work and do not complain. Get it in writing . Everything you are expected to do. If it is to clean stalls every day, three time a week, clean water troughs, rack , sweep etc etc.
I mean everything. Its a lot of work and cleaning those stalls and pens and not having that time to ride takes a toll. Be prepared to work and sweat and not Complain because everyone else is chatting or riding, or just grooming their horses
Honestly, a lot of the time you're better off to pick up extra hours elsewhere to make up the difference. In my experience, working at a barn is tough and sometimes (a lot of times) unfair. Work it out, if you work one four hour shift a week at a barn and get $75 off your board, but you can work one four hour shift a week somewhere else and make ~$160 a month, the barn work isn't worth it. Compare it to min. Wage where you live and explore your options!
I work at two stables, one is where my horse is. That one I just work for reduced board but I could work it all off if I wanted. Both stables are big training barns so it is treated like actual employment. It's hard work at first but I love it. I sit in a cubicle 40 hours a week so working on my feet all weekend is nice.
But don't forget all the other costs: Vet, could be just vaccinations or could be thousands per year. Mine turned up with a tendon injury and now she needs a chiro, not cheap. Plus farrier, $100 every 8 weeks for front shoes or $50 every 8 weeks for a trim. Plus all the other supplies and feed. My barn supplies all the feed but I have to supply any supplements which are another $65 a month.
Thanks! I am well aware of all the costs of owning a horse. I understand that it would be hard. Very hard. But I know that if I can reduce the amount I would pay for board, then I can plow that extra money back towards paying for vet and farrier bills. I have been chasing this dream for 8 years and I know I can do it if I put my mind to it. Thanks everyone who answered! You were all very understanding. It makes me mad when I go to a site and ask a question like this and everyone is like you can't do it. Wait till your older. SO thanks for no one doing that. :)