The cheapest part about the new horse.....is the new horse.
If you buy an older, nothing-special horse in this economy it's anywhere from $400-700 in my area, and that means you'd be lucky to get any leg aids and there is probably various problems. Once in a bue moon you get something extremely lucky, like the owner being an idiot and not knowing she can sell her horse for triple what she's asking. If you see that, I would suggest you go for it before someone else does.
If you are keeping at your house, remembering hay. Our feed store has decent quality alfalfa for about ten a bale. We buy it buy the ton because we have a lot of horses, but I'd say if you only have the one horse I would buy about five bales at a time. I can't tell you how fast they would run out, but that would give you enough time to spare before having to buy again. And if you need to grain over the winter, that's also an extra expense.
Then the tack. If you don't already have tack, you could get a cheap-o saddle for maybe two-three hundred on craigslist. The bridle, a cheap-o one for 20 on craiglist. Then the bits....That just depends on what bit you want. Reins too, it depends. Saddle pads are at least $100 if you want a quality one, which is ridiculous in my opinion but it's true. This is why Craigslist is the best friend of first time horse owners.
Then the vet bills. I personally have never had to visit the vet in the past ten years, but when you do they are so expensive you maye get an anurism from looking at the bill.
Farrier. Front shoes = $50-$80, depending ont he farrier. Now imagine all four, every seven or so weeks. And if you need corrective shoes, or special shoes. My mare Annie needs silicone pads. That's $100 per shoe, per foot.
If you want to compete, equipment regulations. Like reining, you have to have skid boots, splint boots, curb bit, etc. Depending on what you do the equipment will have to be differant.
ALSO, if you only have the acre in the winter if it rains a lot that area will become muddy. Just watch for mud fever, thrush, and things like that. I had my Annie get mud fever so bad she couldn't stand up and we actually had to use a sling and the crane on my dad's service truck to lift her into a stall, and then we spent the next month treating her until she got better. And after that, she was never the same.
I'll come up with more later lol but for right now, I think I'm done ^^
Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.