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Fall of 2014 I'm starting my junior year of college and will be transferring from a community college to the University of Maryland to major in equine studies. Because the university is almost an hour commute (living on campus is not an option), I will only be able to ride my horse once or twice a week if I'm lucky.
I'm considering leasing Sheena out so that way she will remain in shape. She is such a fun horse to ride and I would love to give someone the chance to have fun on her. I've never leased out a horse before, so i have a few questions:

  • What kind of lease should I do? I don't want her to be moved to a different farm, or trailered off for rides without asking me first. I would probably only want them to ride 3 or 4 times a week.
  • How much to charge? I honestly feel like they would be doing me a favor by keeping her in shape so i wouldn't want to charge a lot, but i don't want them taking advantage of me either.
  • What if they start leasing her but I think they are ruining her training or mistreating her? Is she stuck in the lease until the term is up or can i terminate it?
Any other information you think is important to know would be very helpful. Thanks!
 

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I think leasing out your horse sounds like a good idea, though it probably can be difficult to find someone you approve of. I have only been on the leaser side of things, though I thought about leasing out my horse a while back. If it were me, I would definitely only offer an in barn lease, I'm just too protective of my horse to be ok letting it go off property unless I knew the people really well. If you are in a barn with a trainer that you know and trust, you might be able to get them to recommend one of their students who is looking for a lease and would benefit. That is how I found most of my leases when I was a kid, my trainer would recommend a horse and both the owner and I knew it would be a good fit.

See my answers to your questions in purple :)


Fall of 2014 I'm starting my junior year of college and will be transferring from a community college to the University of Maryland to major in equine studies. Because the university is almost an hour commute (living on campus is not an option), I will only be able to ride my horse once or twice a week if I'm lucky.
I'm considering leasing Sheena out so that way she will remain in shape. She is such a fun horse to ride and I would love to give someone the chance to have fun on her. I've never leased out a horse before, so i have a few questions:

  • What kind of lease should I do? I don't want her to be moved to a different farm, or trailered off for rides without asking me first. I would probably only want them to ride 3 or 4 times a week. When I was leasing, that's generally about the amount of days I was allowed to ride for a half lease, in barn.
  • How much to charge? I honestly feel like they would be doing me a favor by keeping her in shape so i wouldn't want to charge a lot, but i don't want them taking advantage of me either. I think I paid about $150 a month for it, but I have noticed a lot of people seem to be charging more now. Maybe look at local adds online to see what other people are asking for leases, compare how much riding the leaser gets a week, the skill level of the horse, if their are allowed to show, etc. and use that to come up with a reasonable price.
  • What if they start leasing her but I think they are ruining her training or mistreating her? Is she stuck in the lease until the term is up or can i terminate it? Just make sure in your contract that either of you is allowed to break the lease with 30 days notice. That protects you both. I would look online for premade lease contracts and see what you do and do not like about them. Then I would compile my own, based on whatever one I liked best and adding in whatever was needed.
Any other information you think is important to know would be very helpful. Thanks!
 

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I would personally make an "out" for myself on the contract that can be executed immediately. If you see the lessee mistreating or doing something dangerous you don't want to be contractually obligated to let them potentially continue for 30 days...or 30 minutes. Obviously, using sound judgement, I'd want the ability to talk up to the person in such a scenario, inform them that for whatever reason (and explain) that you're terminating the agreement effectively immediately, and bid them adieu.
 

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It all depends what you put in your contract as to what they can do.

If you want to do a half lease you can specify what days they can be ridden, where they are kept etc. For this lease sort of lease I'd probably just charge half the costs, so half board, half farrier.

It's hard to put in your contract to "cancel if they're ruining her" because it's hard to be specific about what is ruining a horse. So the best idea is probably to have a 30 day notice period or perhaps, if you're really worried, you can cancel anytime but must return 30 days worth of pay to the leasee. It would have to be both ways though, so if they wanted to cancel they can wait 30 days, or pay 30 days and leave.
 

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I would be very cautious to whom you leased your horse. It would be ideal if one of your friends would lease her because you'd know them and how they would treat your horse Maybe you could screen the prospective leasees before your leave for school? Or have someone you trust do that for you. I think you should put your most important rules in the lease so there wouldn't be any misunderstandings.
 

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I leased out a horse previously and my contract was very specific..as in two pages long. I specified agreed upon riding times, showing process, what equipment was required for trailering, liability release, medical/injury responsibilities, terms of cancellation, including misuse/mistreatment of horse (in that case no funds would be returned). If horse was lame for more than two weeks the monthly rate would either be returned but if only lame a day or two the rate would be prorated. In my case I only charged 1/2 the board..I paid everything as I was in the same position..the horse needed to be ridden and I was at a job where my time at the barn was severely limited.

The girl, her mother and I had a few conversations when things weren't quite up to scratch (like the time she left failed to properly clean him up after a ride and left huge sweat marks on him, saddle, neck, face) but the issues were all relatively minor and were instantly corrected...her mother wasn't one to take excuses and neither was I.

When doing a contract don't skimp. Better to have it excessive and overly complete than find yourself in a problem due to an alleged verbal agreement or assumption of knowledge vice written word. Be paranoid....
 

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I've been a lessee and lessor on several full & partial leases, on-site-only leases & those where the horse could be trailered about. All but 1 were satisfying experiences for both parties involved. I would absolutely lease again, on either end, if the right opportunity presented itself. My one "bad" lease (incidentally, over my freshman year of college) ended up in my beloved show horse being returned to me blind in one eye from a random horses-do-the-darndest-things accident which initially devastated me, but otherwise the horse was impeccably cared for and still fully useable.

I've done "free" lease where the rider pays for all board/farrier/vet & owner paid nothing, and I've done partial leases where the rider pays a small fee (such as monthly board/part of board depending on access to horse) & the owner covered farrier/vet.
 
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