First off, thanks to everyone so far for their patience as I pepper the forum.
I didn't think this would play out as it has, but a high school girl has been trying to sell her 8 year old Pintabian mare with no luck. I had e-mailed her awhile back, curious if she'd consider a lease, and she said she would. I went to ride the mare yesterday, and she's lovely. She has the most beautiful gaits, has had some great natural horsemanship training in saddle and on the ground, and is very responsive. I know she'll w/t/c, unlike the other mare I really liked.
They can't have her kept at their home anymore, so if I were to lease her I would be picking the facility of MY choice, paying her full board plus a $50/month fee to her owner. Does this sound reasonable? Because they'd be trailering her for me and all that, they're also asking that I commit to a year's lease with her. None of this is a red flag for me, except is makes me SO nervous because I've never owned a horse before and the only other time I leased I was riding 2x/week and the mare stayed in the facility she'd been in. I don't know much about horseownership (but obviously this would be a great crash course) and I wouldn't be completely liable, because I wouldn't be owning her. I know it's fairly typical to do an off-site lease, I just don't know where to begin!