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miniheart 06-28-2011 06:37 PM

First Time Leaser: Tips, Suggestions and Must Haves!
I've just about had it with not having a horse of my own to ride. I sold my last horse because he wasn't the right fit for me. I take lessons a few times a week for 4hr sessions. I'd say I'm a beginner still though with being fairly comfortable at the trot.

Anyways, I decided I wanted a horse again but don't like the winters we have here and keeping a horse through winter is not only expensive but dangerous and I don't want to do it. So my idea was leasing for the Summer/Fall months and give the horse back in October or November.

Now I have found a gelding, 22yrs old, trail horse his whole life and his owner has 2 colts to train and she is looking for a semi-retirement home for her gelding over the summer and fall months to let her focus on the colts. She wants a contract, as do I and am awful with laws and regulations so I'm nervous about screwing up the contract.

I'm wondering if anyone who does leasing, and/or leased a horse knows what needs to be discussed, what is written in black and white and what is my responsibility and hers for the most part. I put in my ad when I was searching for a horse to lease that I'd do all the farrier fees, hay, you know, the normal routine care. Now my Fiance wants to know about if he gets injured, who pays vet bills, stuff like that. So what do you guys usually do with your leasing? I think the girl leasing him to me is most worried about me not giving him back in October, :lol: Which is not a problem because I know supporting a horse through the winter is not what I want to do right now. Plus I'm a recent college graduate from accounting and most accounting jobs open in the fall, hence another reason to give the horse back in the fall, less responsibility and I don't have something tying me down because I plan to leave the area.

Okay I'm going off topic lol SO! Tips? Ideas? Suggestions?

Indigosblue 06-30-2011 03:53 PM

you've basically got the idea. Lease agreements are mostly between two people, so it's not universal what's in them. My suggestion could be different than what someone else would say. However, the lease agreement needs to cover anything and everything that could or will happen while you are in possession of the horse. It needs to be as detailed as possible. You yourself need to figure out liability and vet costs. I personally think if the condition existed before or is a result of previous ownership, then the owner needs to pay. However, if you run him through a fence or he gets injured on your property, you pay. Since he's 22 there may be underlying health issues, so this covers them, i'd think. This way you know the lady's not freeloading a horse that's got health issues that she'll blame you for, or make you pay for. Always act like a highly suspicious person when drawing up the agreement, lol. it'll save your butt later.

if you are boarding the horse with yourself or at your preferred stable, it will most likely be at your cost, unless the owner has said they will cover the fee. You will be responsible for proper maintenance: feed water and shelter. You will also cover farrier and vet costs, as explained above. As an example, if the horse has arthritis and needs shots, you shouldn't have to cover that, in my opinion. However, it's up to the owner again. If you are paying the owner to lease him, then you really shouldn't have to cover costs like that, but if the horse is a "free lease" you will probably be expected to cover everything. You need to make sure the horse is properly outfitted and that the saddle and bridle will cause no lasting damage, unless the tack has been provided. You will be responsible for your own safety and sometimes owners will put in a clause, like dressing appropriately or wearing a helmate at all times.

i hope all this helped give you an idea, but just remember that it's different for all owners, so i can't give you an exact lease agreement. Just be careful with the vet stuff because the horse is 22, and talk to the owner about it. Also put in a time limit on the agreement. Hope this helps =)

miniheart 07-04-2011 10:31 AM

Thanks Indigo, that does help a lot. I'm very nervous about it but I guess I will have to think more about whether I want to do this or not. I just don't want to get sued or something.

Indigosblue 07-04-2011 01:12 PM

you should lease the horse, unless you mistrust the owner. I was just saying what to be careful of =P. Leasing is a wonderful opportunity, and I've had great experiences with it. The great thing is that you can customize your agreement, so you just need to talk it over with the owner. Maybe ask the owner to draft up a copy and then look over it. You could then decide if it fits what you want, or if not ask the owner to add/delete something. I wouldn't worry too much and just go ahead and ask =)

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