View Full Version : Spin-off regarding leasing.

Dec. 12, 2009, 11:38 PM
There was recently a thread regarding how much one would be willing to pay for a lease. Barring that the horse is something like $30,000+ where paying for a lease is a meaningful investment. My question is this: with so many horses of all experience levels available for free lease or next to nothing, would you even consider paying to lease a horse?

Dec. 13, 2009, 12:21 AM
I leased 11 horses before I got my first horse when I was 13. They all were free leases, and I rode some nice horses, even a retired Rolex horse (I rode him HC at every recognized event)! I would never pay for a lease.

I considered a free lease for my horse that I originally had for sale at $30,000 (which I'm definitely not getting in this market!!). They turned him down because he was too nice :lol:

Dec. 13, 2009, 03:02 AM
It really depends on the horse. If it is a really nice horse that you aren't going to get the chance again to lease in a million years, also depending if you get along well and the price is right, what the heck go for it. Otherwise I would hold out for the free leasers.

Dec. 13, 2009, 11:26 AM
The answer is, it depends.

It is always possible to find SOMETHING to ride for free. I'm sure you could even find a 16.2h, 9 yo horse that has competed at Advanced. Of course he's probably either crazy or lame.... but if you'll settle for a 15.2h 14yo mare that has done Prelim and is now good for BN/N, or something nice but green as grass that will require a lot of work, yeah, you can probably find something out there for free or really cheap. But unless they just have an owner who wants to keep them "forever" and just doesn't have time to ride them, they are free or cheap because there is a "problem" that makes it impossible to sell them for a meaningful amount of money.

I have a really talented little mare I got for free, because she was a 4 yo, 15.2h, chestnut TB mare, no show record, who charged jumps from three/four strides out with her head straight up in the air. Not worth it for the owner to try to sell. Suits me down to the ground, took me several months to fix the charging issue, a year and a half later she is starting at Training level. But not for everyone!


Dec. 13, 2009, 12:04 PM
Of course it depends! If someone had a going, very successful upper level horse they wanted to lease, I'd expect to pay because everyone is looking for a horse like that. Whatever the market will bear, fair's fair. But on the other hand, if a lease is a "win-win" for both parties, I certainly think it's fair to seek or to offer a free lease. Because a "free lease", unless you are your own barn owner, hay grower, trainer, vet, and farrier, is not, in fact, "free". ;)

Dec. 13, 2009, 12:55 PM
Also depends on how well you ride. If you are going to improve my horse I might consider it. If I am going to have to retrain him when your free lease is over, he is better off in a pasture.

Dec. 13, 2009, 01:23 PM
I paid a small amount to lease and compete a 3 star horse at preliminary in 2008. It was actually a better deal than the typical free lease in the sense that I wasn't paying board and training, just a daily fee that was very small given what I was getting. This year, I will be contributing a board and training to lease a horse that is training level ready to go preliminary, but not fully paying for everything. I don't think I would be willing to pay for all expenses plus a lease fee unless it were a very specific situation and the ones that I see where I would be likely to pay, I can't imagine finding the horse that someone would be willing to lease

Dec. 13, 2009, 02:03 PM
Glad to see this question and the responses... I know this DQ who paid $15k to lease this $45k 15 yr PSG schoolmaster (that couldn't be sold) for their kid to get them to YR. I thought that was insane, ntm the kid didn't even make YR with the horse. Oh and they pay all the horse's expenses too. :eek:

Dec. 13, 2009, 03:40 PM
Making YRs or not doesn't impact the validity of the deal.... anyone who buys or leases a horse with the intent of achieving a specific performance goal is taking a chance on their horse's soundness, their own riding/training ability, a tire not going flat on the way to an important qualifier, or just another nicer horse or a horse with a better rider showing up at the important qualifier..... The horse was capable at the time they leased him of working at the level required for YRs.... not a cheap horse. If they had paid $15K for him outright, people would have said they got the deal of the century, and if he'd gone lame after a year of showing the kid around at PSG they would be stuck paying for him to retire or giving him away, well that would just be the way of things. They avoided that eventuality, got the experience, and are insane?

Now, if you can readily lay hands on a list of available PSG schoolmasters who are under $15K and guaranteed to stay sound for a year and get their riders to YRs? Then I'd agree they were insane and PLEASE forward the list to me! I suspect my email box will not exceed capacity.


Dec. 13, 2009, 03:54 PM
I didn't mean to imply that making YRs impacted the validity of the deal... I guess the real shock was that they didn't need to spend the $$ to have a good shot at YRs or the experience. The kid has already experienced YRs, plus some other perks. It just seemed more like a waste considering what they already had for the kid to ride and then coupled with how they complained about finances. Then they're paying for a second year at the same price... I guess these are the type of details I forget to include while going on little sleep. :) Sorry, it wasn't meant to be a long post.

Dec. 13, 2009, 04:12 PM
Well, poormouthing and then spending money on a PSG horse when the kid already had a YR horse (or two) does sound a little stupid. But $15K for a year on a PSG horse (apparently still sound if they're doing it again) doesn't strike me as nutty, in and of itself. $15K/year for any horse you don't need and can't afford does :-)


Dec. 13, 2009, 04:27 PM
I've free leased one horse to two different kids...He had gone advanced, but very quirky...He was one of those horses that you could point and he would jump...dressage, good luck...Anyways he was a great horse and the first rider rode him for two years..did really well, went prelim successfully for a year and a half. We had to tell her that she had outgrown him....he couldn't go that level anymore. that was a sad day for all of us...The second rider was not a good deal, she did not take care of him at shows and barely at home(hard keeper)....unfortunatly for her every event she went to plenty of people knew him and sent the report off to us...So if you lease a horse great....if you free lease cool, just be prepared for a horse that isn't perfect and he might need a whole bunch of extra care..like specialized shoeing, adequine, injections, etc. .I would rather have a horse that is bold jumping than do dressage well(can always bs thru that) so a free lease isn't really free, since you have to pay for his care, which can be pretty expensive.Any ways good luck...

Dec. 13, 2009, 06:00 PM
Glad to see this question and the responses... I know this DQ who paid $15k to lease this $45k 15 yr PSG schoolmaster (that couldn't be sold) for their kid to get them to YR. I thought that was insane, ntm the kid didn't even make YR with the horse. Oh and they pay all the horse's expenses too. :eek:
$15k for a year would be dead right for a $45k horse for a lease fee. One third of its value per year. They obviously thought it was worth the expense since they did it. And I know LOTS of people who are swimming in cash but that still cry poor. That's just the way people are sometimes!

As to the OT...I guess it would greatly depend on what I was looking for a what I was finding. I'm leery of free leases now even though my first horse was free lease that I ended up being given (well forever be in debt to that family!). I've had or seen free leases go unexpectedly bad...in both directions. I've also seen them work out fabulously! It just depends SO much on a lot of things.

Dec. 13, 2009, 06:59 PM
I have free leased a horse out in the past, and both times it was through my trainer to a student either at her barn or that rode regularly with her. Those times were basically letting the kid use my horse for the summer while I was out of town, so it was a matter of convenience (the proverbial win-win). Because it was through someone I really trusted and she had a close supervisory eye on things, it went well.

This time, I have a very experienced mid-level horse that I really don't want to sell but can't afford to keep. I have not tried to lease out a horse for a fee before, and it seems that people are far more interested in a free lease, especially short-term. That makes sense, given the economy and all, but I would like a longer term arrangement for him. I'm just in new territory in regards to long-term leasing and not familiar with what to expect.

Thank you all for your input, it has been helpful!

Dec. 13, 2009, 08:53 PM
I would pay for a lease for an Intermediate or Advanced horse (if I were a better rider), especially if i were aiming for a particular competition and something had happened to my own horse (e.g. Young Riders).

I'd also pay for a lease with a Prelim or Training horse if it were for a short time (a month or so).

And I might pay lease fee as part of a "lease to purchase"

Buit for a longer term lease at Prelim or below, I would expect that I could find e "free lease" if I looked hard enough- especially in this market.

The free leases I have been involved in (both ends) were for a minmum of a year, and ended up beoing 3 - 5 years.

Dec. 14, 2009, 08:02 AM
I would have happily paid to lease the right horse for the past two seasons, but I never found the right one and ended up buying my dream horse in the end.
I think for prelim and up it's reasonable to expect to pay something...but I did notice that the lease fees for Eventers were seldom the 1/3 of the market value that I'd expected to be paying. For instance, I missed out on a 30K horse that was leased out for 5K to someone else...so only 1/6 the asking price. To me that always seemed like a strange irony given the demands of UL eventing on a horse's soundness!

Dec. 14, 2009, 11:26 AM
My question is this: with so many horses of all experience levels available for free lease or next to nothing, would you even consider paying to lease a horse?
I am not sure I agree with the premise that there are so many free leases available at all levels
A free lease on a rideable, solidly going prelim and up eventer exists but I don't think they are common.
I would pay something (how much varies) for a going prelim or up horse that was rideable and solid at the level and I could take off the farm.

Dec. 14, 2009, 11:52 AM
When someone leases a horse, they are usually responsible for insuring said horse, correct? So if you lease a $30,000+ horse, even for free, that is going to be a fairly hefty insurance premium.

Dec. 16, 2009, 01:37 AM
This is a timely topic as I'm considering leasing out my homebred two star horse. He's ready to step out at prelim and will go intermediate as soon as he's fit. I'm thinking of leasing him because he's too small for me, and Mr. PF will already have two prelim horses next year until the mare sells, and it seems silly to have him sitting around.

I was thinking that if the leasor was going to leave him here in our program I'd "free lease" him in terms of having them only pay expenses (board, training, lessons, etc.) since that money would be coming to me, but that if someone wanted to lease him off site, I'd charge a monthly fee of something in the neighborhood of $300. He requires fairly minimal maintenance (adequan twice a month), though whether here or elsewhere I'd want a say in where and how often he runs. Since I bred him, and have managed his career thus far, I know what works and what doesn't. He's competitive at that level (has won prelim and int horse trials) and he's not complicated, but can be cheeky and isn't suitable for a novice.

Does this seem reasonable? Something someone would be interested in? When I worked for Sharon WHite, we leased a few on paid leases, but it doesn't seem as done out here. . .