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Training a friend's horse - help please

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  • Training a friend's horse - help please

    I'm moving to the east coast and a friend of mine is going to send her horse out with me. He is a 7 y/o warmblood that she just doesn't have time for him. She's been sending him to a natural horsemanship trainer who has experience in dressage but even the trainer only has time to ride him once or twice a week and he really needs to be ridden 5 days a week so he can progress.

    I will be boarding and working with an FEI dressage trainer where I'm going. I myself am an armature w/ a intermediate or so level of riding.
    I will be taking 1 lesson a week with her and probably riding everyday with her.

    I'm wondering what I should ask my friend for in terms of what she should pay for her horse, etc.

    Should ask to own a percentage of him (she has about 10k in to him now)?
    Should I ask her to pay for his stall, hay/grain, and farrier?
    Should I ask her to pay for the lessons?

    Or some combination of the above??

    I really don't know what is typical in this kind of situation. I want to be fair and I want us to both feel good about it.

    Also, should we agree upon a price now that I could buy him for if down the line I end up loving him? Because after me working with him with the trainer, taking him to shows/clinics, etc. he will obviously be worth alot more.

    I'm am getting the advantage of having a nice horse w/ lots potential to work with. But on the other hand I will be investing a ton of time and money into him and could instead wait and save to buy my own WB.

    Any thoughts or advice would be great! Thanks!

  • #2
    This agreement can be anything the both of you are comfortable with stating in a contract. Why not start with a half lease, each paying half the horse's expenses with the exception of the riding lesson, which you should pay. You bring up a good point of agreeing to a purchase price before additional training, depending on how expensive he is, maybe part of your expenses can be rolled into the purchase price. I would not want to own a percentage of the horse, so many things can go wrong and what happens if there is a catastrophic illness . . . who pays? Good luck with your move and horse, sounds like this could be a win-win for the both of you.
    "You gave your life to become the person you are right now. Was it worth it?" Richard Bach

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    • #3
      How does the owner view this arrangement? Does she think she is sending the horse to you for training, or does she think this is a 'free-lease' situation -- in other words, will she be surprised if you ask her to pay for board, lessons, a percentage ownership in the horse? Because it raises the question, why doesn't she send the horse to a professional trainer nearby, rather than pay a similar amount to send him away (how far is he going?) with an amateur.

      But to address your question, I think what is 'typical' depends entirely on the skill of the rider and/or the wealth of the owner.

      And does the potential loss of your amateur status concern you, as this might affect what $$ you want to accept.

      And my last 2 cents: Seems like you can either ask her to pay for training, OR ask her to agree to a 'pre-training' purchase price. But you can't ask her to pay for training and then expect her to sell to you at a price that doesn't compensate her for that training expense.
      ...somewhere between the talent and the potato....

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      • #4
        In my case, the owner of a very nice but green mare asked me to ride the mare regularly. She will probably be for sale down the line.

        The owner is paying board/vet/farrier. I pay for one lesson a week with my trainer and ride 5-6 times a week.

        Since I'm not in a position to buy now, and I'm certainly competent enough to ride the mare but I'm not a professional trainer, I feel the arrangement is more than fair to both of us. I have access to a horse to ride whenever I want, and the owner will be able to sell her for more down the road.

        We haven't discussed commissions, but I don't expect and wouldn't accept one. The owner does not owe me any more than what she is already offering. I feel very lucky to be in my current situation.

        I don't know if this is typical or not. All that really matters is we're all happy with the arrangement.
        Halt Near X | Horse Bloggers - Blog Directory

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        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by Calhoun View Post
          This agreement can be anything the both of you are comfortable with stating in a contract. Why not start with a half lease, each paying half the horse's expenses with the exception of the riding lesson, which you should pay. You bring up a good point of agreeing to a purchase price before additional training, depending on how expensive he is, maybe part of your expenses can be rolled into the purchase price. I would not want to own a percentage of the horse, so many things can go wrong and what happens if there is a catastrophic illness . . . who pays? Good luck with your move and horse, sounds like this could be a win-win for the both of you.
          good point on owning a percentage. this is why i love getting feedback in the forums, stuff I don't think of right away.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by Anselcat View Post
            How does the owner view this arrangement? Does she think she is sending the horse to you for training, or does she think this is a 'free-lease' situation -- in other words, will she be surprised if you ask her to pay for board, lessons, a percentage ownership in the horse? Because it raises the question, why doesn't she send the horse to a professional trainer nearby, rather than pay a similar amount to send him away (how far is he going?) with an amateur.

            But to address your question, I think what is 'typical' depends entirely on the skill of the rider and/or the wealth of the owner.

            And does the potential loss of your amateur status concern you, as this might affect what $$ you want to accept.

            And my last 2 cents: Seems like you can either ask her to pay for training, OR ask her to agree to a 'pre-training' purchase price. But you can't ask her to pay for training and then expect her to sell to you at a price that doesn't compensate her for that training expense.
            No, I'm not expecting her to pay me. Just maybe pay for some or all of his expenses. There are no good dressage trainers in her area, plus she is picky about him being in the right home and knows how I would take care of him.

            Comment


            • #7
              well doesnt appear to me that you have laid down a lease agreement with finance attached

              the questions you are asking should be sorted out before you have the horse
              in a contract and one thats witness by a solictor is better

              sounds to me as if this is a free lease as you would be using him so paying for him might be up to you
              but you really need to get a contract with the owner as well as insurances sorted and vet and farriers you migt find that when the woner finds out exactly what you want from her they might not allow him to be sent with you

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              • #8
                Well, if it is a free lease, you should pay for what you do with him, but then I think you should think of a buy out price now, which low price would compensate you for the work you put into him.

                If she doesn't want you to ever buy him, then you should be reimbursed for tsome of the care and costs of him. In that case, you could do a half lease, she pays for half his training and costs. That keeps her in the loop as owner.

                If she wants you to train him and pay for his costs until he is that uber expensive horse which she will later want sold for uber dollars, then agree now about the fact that you will want a commission to reimburse you of his costs, that you will only keep him for say two years, so that that commission can be fair recompense for those kinds of costs (after two years, your costs might be so much it would be a sad and financiallyh hard thing for him to be sold away from you).

                So, find out what she wants to do with the horse, and get her to pin it down now. I would mainly insist that it isn't left up in the air before you take him that she is pinned down to the deal you make now. Of course it could be renegotiated at the end of the current deal, such as two years from now, but I woulnd't take on all costs and expenses of a horse I am training for her to benefiti from.
                Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.

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                • #9
                  I am thinking of this as more of a free lease. You have a quality horse that you get to ride for free. Ya he is not trained...but if he was he wouldn't be free. I would expect you to pay for the expenses plus insurance and return the horse to me in the same if not better condition when the lease is done. Honestly why should you get anything? You get to ride a quality horse for free.

                  A side note, I don't know the age in question of the op but if you have aged out taking anysort of renumeration is against usef.

                  I say get it on paper and enjoy the experience. jmho

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Well, quite some interesting opinions here! The reason I asked on this forum is because this idea of her sending him to me just came up. Nothing has been agreed on or really discussed at this point. So that's why I wanted to get some feedback and ideas so when we do discuss details, if we do, then I will have some clear thoughts about what I'd like to ask for.

                    That said, I just rode her horse last night and he is a nice mover. But still green. He needs lots of work, his mind is still all over the place. He's a nice WB cross with decent breeding, but his not some kind of uber fancy WB.


                    So now we will probably discuss more and see what we are both comfortable and happy with. We're trying to help each other out here.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If she is sending you the horse for training then I'd charge her for the board and something tacked on for training which would at least cover weekly lessons with the FEI trainer plus whatever you want to charge for your training.

                      She should also cover vet and farrier bills. This should all be spelled out in an agreement with a clause for what happens if the horse gets injured and must be shipped back (at whose cost).

                      It's ...er.. tricky to look at this as any sort of investment or money maker for yourself. Anything can happen.

                      I'd keep it business like and at least cover all your costs if you are not wanting to charge for training. A free lease usually means you cover the costs. The horse is green. Free leases of green horses usually mean free training for the horse if the rider is competent.

                      You need to sit down and think of worst case scenarios. Horse goes lame and needs 11 months stallrest and rehab, for example.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by egontoast View Post
                        If she is sending you the horse for training then I'd charge her for the board and something tacked on for training which would at least cover weekly lessons with the FEI trainer plus whatever you want to charge for your training.

                        She should also cover vet and farrier bills. This should all be spelled out in an agreement with a clause for what happens if the horse gets injured and must be shipped back (at whose cost).

                        It's ...er.. tricky to look at this as any sort of investment or money maker for yourself. Anything can happen.

                        I'd keep it business like and at least cover all your costs if you are not wanting to charge for training. A free lease usually means you cover the costs. The horse is green. Free leases of green horses usually mean free training for the horse if the rider is competent.

                        You need to sit down and think of worst case scenarios. Horse goes lame and needs 11 months stallrest and rehab, for example.

                        i will add if under 18 you need parents consent for any contract as you ar regarded as a minor

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Whatever you decide to do, just remember that if you accept compensation from your friend to ride this horse, you lose your amateur status.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            whatever you decide to do, just make sure you get everything in writing. Horse people for some reason don't do this a lot, outside of releases when riding at a barn. if you have things in writing, there's nothing to argue about. just sit down together and work through what she will pay for/you will pay for. Add to it as time goes on.

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