Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Mobile, Alabama
• Horses: 0
My advice to a total beginner/novice rider is listed below.
1.) Always have a professional involved somewhere.
2.) Budget accordingly for PPE, vet, farrier, costs of upkeep, etc.
3.) Leasing option is always the best way to go first. Most farms if you take lessons will more than likely have school horses up for lease during certain points of the year.
4.) If you are willing to learn to become a better horseman and a better horse owner, spend more time around the barn if you are able to. Ask everything and anything that helps you gain more knowledge.
5.) Don't settle. Buying horses is like dating, don't settle for the pretty boy/girl that is not a right fit, nor settle for the first one that comes along. Find the one that matches you best and meets your goals.
6.) Before deciding, ride every breed, discipline, personality, etc. you get your hands on. It helps.
7.) Always get a pre-purchase exam. It is expensive but buying a horse without one is like playing Russian Roulette.
8.) I'd go with connections first before answering Craigslist or online horse ads. Networking is important.
9.) If you are underage, especially in the 15-17 range, be cautious when buying because if college is a plan, you have to plan accordingly what you will be doing with said horse when the time comes. (I just think leasing is the best option in this case)