Work Lease - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 06-11-2017, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Work Lease

Recently, my daughter was offered a free/work lease from her trainer. She will work and groom a particular horse in exchange for riding her. What are the basic rules for something like this? We don't have a contract yet and I want to figure out what we are committing to.
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post #2 of 3 Old 06-12-2017, 02:38 PM
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It greatly varies in each situation - be sure that there is a contract to sign with explicit rules for your daughter to follow. I've known some bad situations with owner/leaser conflict that could have been prevented with explicit rules for the lease. They can be super flexible and a great opportunity for kids, but as the adult there are a few things I would specifically be sure to call out in a contract and discuss beforehand.

1. How much work is involved in this situation? Is she only responsible for caring for this horse or will she need to care for other horses too? What does care entail - just cleaning the stall or is feeding involved too? Is it a solely "care for this horse- ride this horse" situation or will she need to log X amount of hours working in the barn to have a "free lease" riding time?
2. How many days is she responsible for the horse? Is this a full lease, 7 days a week she needs to be there or only 2-3 days?
3. In the case of a full lease she may not be responsible for payment for using the horse, but will she be responsible for other financial responsibilities like her farrier or vet bills or feed?
4. Will lessons be required during this lease? Some owners/trainers might require weekly lessons with the horse, in addition to riding on her own. Also ask what she is allowed to do when she rides. For example, if she is jumping in her lessons perhaps the trainer will not want her jumping the horse on her own and having some restrictions.
5. If your daughter is interested in showing - nail down details of whether or not she would be allowed to take the horse to a show or travel off the property.

Those would be the big questions I'd want answered. I'm sure there are more I haven't thought of! Have it all written down in a contract just to protect yourself as well as the trainer. You can never be too thorough!
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post #3 of 3 Old 06-12-2017, 05:28 PM
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I'll second that it varies greatly with each situation. You need to get the details in writing so there are no you said/ but I meants. If she says three days then schedule the days - you can be flexible but unless your daughter can drive herself you are the one taking time out of your day to get her there so this is a courtesy to you. Know how long she is expected to be there. Is she only caring for the one horse (total care) or will she be mucking stalls, sweeping the barn. Will she be riding only on the days she works or will she be able to ride at other times? Does she need to call ahead to ride? This is also a courtesy to you so you know whether to bring a good book or leave and go do your own thing while she does hers. Will she have to take lessons on the horse and are those part of her lease or will you be paying for them. I would assume that the care involves no financial responsibility for the horse but you need to get that spelled out as well. Who provides tack and equipment?
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