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Lease To Buy: What’s in it for the seller?

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  • #21
    Don't do it. You want to sell, hold your ground. Lease to buy as described keeps your horse off the market and has risk for you as a seller. As a buyer, this is a great system. As a seller, I don't see the value for you. This answer could vary a lot for different horse+rider combinations, but as you described your horse, I think keeping the horse on the market is the best way to find a buyer.

    Comment


    • #22
      I would never do a lease to buy option with monthly lease payment.

      When I did it, buyer paid 1/3 the value of my horse for one year, non refundable for any reason.

      If they wanted to exercise the option to buy and have the 1/3 go toward the sale price, they had to pay the rest for the horse by month 6. Otherwise it was just a year lease and they would have to buy the whole horse again, or leave their $$$ on the table and walk away.

      In my experience, in the horse industry people need to have some serious skin in the game to act right. The people who don't want to take any responsibility or be on the hook for anything are preserving their option to cut bait at any convenient opportunity.
      The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
      Jinxyhttp://tiny.cc/PIC798&http://tiny.cc/jinx364
      Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
      The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY

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      • #23
        So I have a horse right now that I have on a lease to buy contract. As the buyer, I required it because it was the only way my husband was on board with it. I spent 5+ years on a difficult horse but it was cheap upfront, we wanted to spend $30k this time, he wanted to have time with the horse to make sure it was a fit. I saw a lot of sellers offer outright purchase prices that were lower than the total of doing a lease to buy. My contract for this horse started with a total value of $35k for purchase at the end of the year or a $30k if purchased up front or within the first 3 months of the lease. We vetted him, found some not insignificant OA in both hocks, and all the #'s came down $5k. They also wanted half the price up front for the year lease, so I wired them $15k and if I buy out within the first 3 months (which is mid September) I owe them another $10k. If I wait until the end of the year, it's $15k. I carry mortality for the full $30k on the horse

        He's a good example of things other people were talking about, he's a really nice horse, but they were trying to sell him as a 1.30m jumper, which he is scope wise capable of. But because of his hocks I would never buy him for that. We thought he had potential as an eq/hunter horse. He has some show ring anxieties to work through but we're starting to figure them out and his flatwork needs some finesse even though he's 9. So he wasn't a truly finished made horse and a little quirky.

        He is however super sweet and fun on the ground, the same horse out of his stall every day, never bucks, bites, kicks out or even considers a rear. Great with friends in turnout. Things like that are hard to put a price on. We also have a close working relationship with this trainer and have traded horses back and forth with them before and he is 2 hours away, so they'll see us at shows and they know our program. But I did have LOTS of other options from trainers we did not know presented to me when I made an ISO add on facebook that clearly specified must be lease to purchase. I think for many it's a way to get a horse moved on that maybe is a tough size, a little quirky, not fancy enough etc. From a trainers perspective, whatever gets me a chunk of money and moves this horse we're not using out of my barn is best.

        Comment


        • #24
          As others have stated, this is a good option from a seller perspective if the horse is hard to sell whether it is due to quirkiness or a marginal PPE. Gets him off the books, and i believe many non-pros would have a hard time parting with a horse that was fun to ride if they've had it in the barn for a while. Makes the PPE seem irrelevant or you learn to ride the quirks.

          Comment


          • #25
            If you do a standard lease, you are 100% going to get the horse back. If you do a lease to own it’s probably 50/50 you are getting the horse back.

            Only time, IME, lease to own works is if there is a substantial non refundable down payment, like 30-50% of purchase price, up front and a defined term of 3 to 6 months. The whole idea of no down payment and a monthly lease fee that would be ductucted from purchase price in a year IF they decide to buy only allows those who really cannot afford the horse to pretend they can for a year.

            Another issue is we, as a group, always specify the leaser pays the insurance assuming the horse is insured. In reality most horses are NOT insured and many are not insurable. Most underwriters won’t write MM coverage on horses valued at under10k (only aware of one) or older then 17 and many owners of very expensive horses won’t pay 10-15k + a year in premiums.

            For OP here just straight lease the horse out unless they can come up with a healthy down payment and a no more then 6 month option to buy. They may honestly think they can save up to exercise the purchase price at the end of the lease as well as carry the horse, don’t know them. No idea OP does know them. Maybe they are going to win the lottery.

            Selling one on payments is a huge risk unless it stays under sellers care and there is a defined time frame, like 90 days. Again, they need to have a substantial down payment to prove their commitment and ability to buy.

            Hint here, never discuss terms in front of minor children. Rare is the parent who will admit they can’t afford the horse their child is in love with in front of that child. They can string a trainer/ seller along for sometime with no ability to buy it. That conversation need to exclude the child whether custodial parents or overpromising ex. Have seen adults do that with SO too. Talk big in front of them with no ability to follow through.

            Protect yourself. It’s great to be compassionate towards people but misplaced trust can cost you dearly with a luxury item like a horse.
            When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

            The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #26
              Thank you for all the responses, they were very appreciated! So, a bit of an update...

              To preface, horse was only supposed to be at the barn for two months because they only had a share boarder for that long, and he’s now been up there for over four. Even with the shareboarder for two months, his bill is close to $3k, I had previously paid for six months of board about two years ago with the same people which totaled over $5k, and then another $4k for him to go to one horse show without anyone ever coming to try him (which is why I had been really hesitant to invest more money into him...). He went up at the beginning of May and I started to get a little nervous at the end of July about what my final bill would be, but couldn’t get in touch with the trainer for three and a half weeks. So, I was going to stop the bleeding and just bring him back home September 1st, which was the deadline I finally gave them for when he would have to come home.

              After the student from the OP walked away from the horse, trainer started marketing him big time on social media. After a few people came and tried him from the social media ads, one absolutely fell in love with him. Wanted to leave a deposit, do PPE, a four day trial, and if all went well they wanted to buy him for $5k under the asking price. Fine, I’ll take what I can get at this point even though I’ll have $12k into him just from board and show fees (doesn’t include the 9 years of upkeep, the cost of bringing him into this world, or what trainer’s commission will be).

              The people did the PPE, horse is sound as a dollar, flexions were great, films of joints were great and consistent with his age and use, everything looked good! Until the buying trainer noticed an old cut on the outside of his right hind leg, and asked for an x ray of it. (Note: I was not aware of any old cuts until I got the call with the PPE results, but apparently he was injured sometime badly enough that trainer had a vet look at it. See, I take care of all my horses myself at home... Turnout, stall cleaning, feeding, it’s all me, and the horse has been sound his entire life. I have TONS of pasture, but no indoor or even any jumps at the moment which is why I sent him to the trainer.) Anyway, they found that he has a distal splint fracture. Trainer said he got the cut from knocking himself at some point, but she thinks the splint *must* have happened sometime when he was with me. Which I don’t agree with, but that is honestly neither here nor there. I used to run a boarding barn, I know that horses are horses and will always find a way to try and kill themselves - I’m only frustrated by not being notified, if the situation were reversed I would have been on the phone with her as I was pulling the horse out of the pasture, and if he needed time off to recover then I would have brought him home to do so instead of being out $900/month board.

              At this point, I’m in shock and totally wrecked. Trainer and I both consulted with several vets that didn’t think it was a big deal with him being so sound, and even the PPE vet said the fragment could be removed if it ever bothered him, but it obviously isn’t at the moment so didn’t think it was a huge issue. The people walked away anyway, and I totally understand that, but I’m still very disappointed on so many levels.

              We did have another person come try him the weekend of the 1st and they LOVE him, but can’t arrange anything until the 15th and would want to do a month long trial before deciding. I’ve been prepped by the trainer that $20k is their absolute max budget so they probably won’t want to go that high for him in light of the splint, even though the original asking price is $25k and I’ve already knocked 5k off the price because of the splint. So the trainer talked me into leaving the horse up there until the 15th with the promise that she would continue to market him and get people in to see him in that time frame. And the only reason I’m worried about the price is that I really need to at least break even and get all his bills paid off, which is right at that $20k.

              The other issue that I haven’t disclosed previously is that the trainer is my absolute best friend, which is why I’ve trusted her with this guy and have been as hands off as possible with the whole situation because I haven’t wanted to step on her toes in any way. We only did this so we could both try to make a little money - she waived her training fees in exchange for a more hefty commission (I’ve always planned on her getting 25-30% just from me), but now I’m struggling with whether I’ll be able to afford that much. Regardless, I don’t want there to be any bad blood or anything with the horse to affect our friendship, but she’s been pretty distant since the beginning of July and I’m not sure what’s going on. And whenever we do discuss the horse or the money involved with the horse, she gets kind of defensive and really impatient with me. Like, I’m not trying to be cheap or imply that she’s screwing me over, but I also can’t go broke just to get the horse sold and he happens to be a really well bred, NICE horse.

              Just not sure what the next step should be from here, the whole situation makes me sick to my stomach... And yes, I have the ABSOLUTE worst luck with horses. I always say that nothing in this world has broken my heart the way that my horses have . Any words of advice or just positive vibes are much appreciated!

              Comment


              • #27
                No more trials. Period. Tell "trainer" to never mind, you are giving the horse to a dear friend.
                You are being treated like a dupe, from many directions.

                Comment


                • #28
                  Your friend sure isn’t acting like one
                  ~Veronica
                  "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
                  http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    First of all, OP, I think your "friend" is doing you no favors. Horse gets hurt enough for the vet to see the horse and friend doesn't tell you? And then when, golly gee, there's damage shown in that same area on a PPE your friend thinks it's an old latent injury from when the horse was in your care? SAY WHAT? Had you know about the injury when it happened you could have, I dunno... DONE SOMETHING?! And at least you'd know what you had come PPE time.

                    But setting that aside, this case somewhat illustrates what is in it for the seller in a lease to own. You had a live buyer. You didn't offer the LTO-- buyers walked. Had you offered the LTO, the horse would have been off your bill during the lease and you might still have that buyer at the end ready to buy. And if not that buyer, the horse would have potentially been easier to sell at the end of the lease term due to additional exposure/showing that for you is sinking bad money after good but for the person leasing wouldn't have been that at all. And even if the injury had come up on a PPE at the end of the lease, they still might have bought because they would have seen for themselves that the horse remained sound for their use notwithstanding the injury.

                    I also think a huge lesson here is that if you are serious, serious about selling a horse-- it may be to your benefit to do a once-over basic PPE and baseline rads before sending the horse to the sale barn. It tells you what you have, and means you won't sink lots more $$$ into a horse that is a tough sell due to the radiographic findings. It gives you the option to do something like a surgery right then, before putting the horse up for sale, if it makes sense to (probably not in this case). It helps you screen buyers-- anyone who doesn't like the films won't even try the horse, so the ones why try him should be a smaller pool but maybe a more likely to buy pool. And it means if the hors got injured at the sale barn, you have a baseline to prove it.

                    If it was me, I'd take this horse home and/or contact the original people who wanted an LTO and see if they were still interested. He doesn't seem like that easy of a sell now, thanks to your friend running up the bill on him while not actually getting him SOLD and arranging for him to have a delightful bad xray finding-- all while you footed the bill. Nice.
                    ~Veronica
                    "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
                    http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      Bring the horse home. NO to any trial periods and you’ve already experienced why it is no. Have a family member pull the knife out of your back your “dear friend” put there. You couldn’t even get in touch with her for three weeks to see what your bill for your horse she’s been making money off for some time is getting to be. Think she’s dear friends with your horse and it’s ability to generate income for her, you are just an inconvenient complication.

                      You are thinking like a gal with a bad boyfriend. Go get your horse and bring it home.

                      If that splint is the one I think it is, it’s an easy surgery to remove it, often done standing at home. More often it never bothers them and your “friend’ is not doing much to help you out for something A) minor and correctable B) that occurred on her watch and C) on a horse she’s found to be quite profitable. For her.
                      When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                      The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                      Comment


                      • #31
                        Originally posted by flightcrash View Post

                        The other issue that I haven’t disclosed previously is that the trainer is my absolute best friend, which is why I’ve trusted her with this guy and have been as hands off as possible with the whole situation because I haven’t wanted to step on her toes in any way. We only did this so we could both try to make a little money - she waived her training fees in exchange for a more hefty commission (I’ve always planned on her getting 25-30% just from me), but now I’m struggling with whether I’ll be able to afford that much. Regardless, I don’t want there to be any bad blood or anything with the horse to affect our friendship, but she’s been pretty distant since the beginning of July and I’m not sure what’s going on. And whenever we do discuss the horse or the money involved with the horse, she gets kind of defensive and really impatient with me. Like, I’m not trying to be cheap or imply that she’s screwing me over, but I also can’t go broke just to get the horse sold and he happens to be a really well bred, NICE horse.
                        From what I've seen, it's rare that these kind of deals work out. More often, especially when horse doesn't sell quickly and is costing more than expected, it seems that all parties feel like they're being taken advantage of or getting the lesser end of the bargain, even no one is setting out to be cheap or screw the other person over. Also seems possible that trainer is not as good at selling horses or that this horse ended up being harder to sell than she thought, than her being deliberately out to use you, especially if she's been a good friend until the money factor changed the relationship.

                        I don't know that you can repair the friendship, but leaving horse with her will probably end up making it worse, especially since she's being uncommunicative and unprofessional (especially re the cut/splint). Tell your friend that horse is costing too much and taking him home is the best option for you now -- I don't think that implies cheapness or getting screwed over, and if trainer reads too much into it, well, maybe she's projecting. And if she gets upset that she's not going to be compensated for her time via commission... remember that you can't control how the other person reacts/feels and it's not like she's gotten horse sold either.

                        Anyway, agreed with vxf111, cases where owner needs horse sold but doesn't want/can't put any more money into the horse is when lease-to-buy or free-lease-to-sell options start to look much more appealing to owners. I would take horse home, though, and start looking at marketing him yourself or at other trainers. I would be more inclined to lease out horse to sell, over another no-money-for-training/higher-commission agreements.

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #32
                          Originally posted by vxf111 View Post
                          First of all, OP, I think your "friend" is doing you no favors. Horse gets hurt enough for the vet to see the horse and friend doesn't tell you? And then when, golly gee, there's damage shown in that same area on a PPE your friend thinks it's an old latent injury from when the horse was in your care? SAY WHAT? Had you know about the injury when it happened you could have, I dunno... DONE SOMETHING?! And at least you'd know what you had come PPE time.

                          But setting that aside, this case somewhat illustrates what is in it for the seller in a lease to own. You had a live buyer. You didn't offer the LTO-- buyers walked. Had you offered the LTO, the horse would have been off your bill during the lease and you might still have that buyer at the end ready to buy. And if not that buyer, the horse would have potentially been easier to sell at the end of the lease term due to additional exposure/showing that for you is sinking bad money after good but for the person leasing wouldn't have been that at all. And even if the injury had come up on a PPE at the end of the lease, they still might have bought because they would have seen for themselves that the horse remained sound for their use notwithstanding the injury.

                          I also think a huge lesson here is that if you are serious, serious about selling a horse-- it may be to your benefit to do a once-over basic PPE and baseline rads before sending the horse to the sale barn. It tells you what you have, and means you won't sink lots more $$$ into a horse that is a tough sell due to the radiographic findings. It gives you the option to do something like a surgery right then, before putting the horse up for sale, if it makes sense to (probably not in this case). It helps you screen buyers-- anyone who doesn't like the films won't even try the horse, so the ones why try him should be a smaller pool but maybe a more likely to buy pool. And it means if the hors got injured at the sale barn, you have a baseline to prove it.

                          If it was me, I'd take this horse home and/or contact the original people who wanted an LTO and see if they were still interested. He doesn't seem like that easy of a sell now, thanks to your friend running up the bill on him while not actually getting him SOLD and arranging for him to have a delightful bad xray finding-- all while you footed the bill. Nice.
                          The big guy is coming home this coming weekend and I’m going to have my vet evaluate him when he gets here so I’ll start to make a plan from there...

                          My biggest problem with the initial buyers is that they (the parents) made some really questionable decisions regarding the pony that the kid is stepping up from that resulted in a severe suspensory tear that now significantly limits his resale value. So because I have less than stellar luck, I was worried about my horse being a repeat of their previous pony during the year they had to decide if they wanted to buy him, then when/if something cropped up they’d just wash their hands of him - and I can see them being the kind of people who would cut their initial offer in half because of the PPE and still want a LTB. This may sound awful, but I’d rather have him come home and be a very pretty pasture ornament for the rest of his life than be worried for the next year about whether they’ve broken him yet or not. And unfortunately at this point, I think I would have had cause to worry about that even though he was with people I trusted.

                          I do honestly think that my friend was banking on someone in house wanting to buy or lease him so she could have more long term income, which is why she didn’t market him much until it was totally clear that the student wasn’t going to work something out - she just ran out of time Because they kept stringing her along. She did end up telling me that she was avoiding my calls because she was hoping to have an offer for me before we spoke again, but then the people went out of town and I was left on the hook for that time frame - which was a very expensive few weeks for me.

                          I do appreciate ALL the advice, especially re: having a set of x-rays done on any potential sale horses before they leave. I’ve been on the buying end quite a bit over the years, and that was never offered at that time so it wasn’t even something I thought of before sending him up. At the moment, I have a couple other babies that I was planning on sending to my friend for training/sale once this guy sold (babies that were bred and born while I was still training myself, I got them all inspected and they have manners, but have otherwise just been growing up until they’re ready to start - oldest just turned 3 this summer), but it looks like I’m going to have to start trying to find another *good* young horse starter for those guys now :/

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            Seller no longer has to pay the bills. It's like the bleeding wound...sure stitches would be *the ultimate* but in the mean time applying pressure is at least going to really slow down the bleeding....

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              OP you didn't previously tell us that LTO people were sh*theads who like to break horses (did they do that while in HER program?)... so we couldn't have known that. But if they are.... why'd your "friend" want to sell your horse to peeps like that anyway?

                              She is doing you NO FAVORS. Don't feel bad at all about taking the horse home.
                              ~Veronica
                              "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
                              http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/

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                              • #35
                                I think that is a very fair way to do it.

                                I don't like lease to own options when the "buyer/leasee" is choosing that option because they don't have the money to buy the horse outright. Either that or they want to take a long time deciding whether the horse is for them or not. There is too much risk involved when they don't necessarily have a vested interest in the horse's health, whether insured or not.

                                The option BITSA uses is great for people who are leasing but then honestly fall in love with the horse and decide that they want to buy it. That's being in it for the best reasons.


                                Originally posted by BITSA View Post
                                We did this with my daughter's fancy pony. Easy easy fancy pony. The pool of buyers for high priced ponies is pretty small especially in the Pac NW. We leased her for a year, but if the people buy her within 6 months they get the lease amount credited towards a preset sales price.
                                Last edited by SnicklefritzG; Sep. 12, 2018, 02:47 PM.

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