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Who pays for new run-in?: Update at #51

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  • Who pays for new run-in?: Update at #51

    A few weeks ago I posted about my recently retired horse hogging the run-in at his new pasture. You all gave me great suggestions about putting in a divider, but unfortunately that didn't work. He still blocks his two pasture mates out of the run-in, and with winter coming we need a solution.

    The BO loves my horse despite his character flaw, and offered to build a second run-in on the property so that my bully can have one and his pasture mates can share the other. One of the pasture mates is another retiree boarded by a friend of mine.

    But now comes the question of who pays and how much.

    I already know she wants a well-constructed wood/metal shed (not the blow-away plastic/canvas stuff) and has a contractor to build it. That could run several hundred dollars, and she's asked me to essentially pay for it with a board increase.

    I'd argue that a run-in needs to be something the BO wants as much as I want it, and to that end we should share the cost. It's entirely plausible that my payments would outlive my horse, for example.

    I also question whether I should shoulder all the co-payments when the other boarder's horse is benefiting from the addition of the shed.

    My other option, of course, is to move my horse to another retirement place where he wouldn't be the alpha.

    This BO gives great care, and my horse is thriving on her pasture. I want this to be a win-win. How would you approach the subject of who pays for a new run-in?
    Last edited by GrayTbred; Dec. 14, 2012, 10:56 AM.

  • #2
    This is what I would call a "capital improvement" to the farm. Unless it is being constructed in such a way that it is portable so you can move it or remove it if you need to BO pays for it. If you pay for it, it's yours to move or remove as you please.
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    • #3
      I would find out first how much a new run in would cost. Then decide how much it's worth it to you to keep your horse there and start with that offer. Maybe it's an improvement that benefits the BO, but it also benefits YOUR horse if you want to keep him there. If your horse is causing problems in the herd, it's within her rights to ask you to leave.

      It's a sunk cost so I wouldn't think of it as "outliving" your horse, rather it's what you need to invest in what will allow your horse to be comfortable and safe. Only you know what your budget can accommodate.

      The BO is making special accommodations for your horse so I think paying for at least part of the construction of the new run in shed is appropriate. From what you've said, she's raising YOUR board to pay for the cost of the shed, not the other boarders but not asking you to pay for the upfront $$ to build it. How much of a raise in board is she asking for?

      The other boarders would not need to pay for the construction of a new shed if your horse wasn't there, right? Are there too many horses for the field? If that's the case then the BO needs a new shed. If it's being built because your horse is causing a problem, that's a different story.

      Too many variables here but the bottom line is whether or not it's worth it to you to keep your horse at that barn.
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      • #4
        Playing Devil's Advocate here: your horse isn't in need of a run-in. He uses the one that's available. The other horses need a run-in, therefore their owners should help to pay for it.

        That said, I think Bogie's answer is quite reasonable. I think that if the BO pays 50% and the other 50% is split between all the boarders who use that field, that would be fair.
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        • #5
          I've been at two different boarding barns where the boarder(s) wanted a new run in to accomodate their horse- there were no runs ins at all. In both situations the barn owner offered to have it built at the boarder's expense. In one situation the boarders spent a lot of money up front for the shelter. In the other, the boarder left for other reasons.

          Look at it from the BO's perspective, she has TWO paying boarders horses that get along w/ things as they are now. Your new horse comes in and upsets the apple cart. If you leave, BO only loses ONE boarder so I'm sure the economics come into play here also.

          Just get the estimate of building new shelter and see howmuch per month BO will charge you the extra and for how long, til it's paid off.

          I think you're gonna have to pay the majority of the cost, but not forever, just until it's paid off. And get it in writing so there's no question when your board should go back to the normal board.
          "There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery." - Charles Darwin

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          • #6
            As a BO who runs a retirement farm, I think this should be the BO's cost.

            However, she should do an economic analysis of the situation and decide if it makes economic sense to add the run in; or if it makes more sense to ask you to leave and keep the status quo.

            As an aside, a wooden run-in costs far more than several hundred dollars. In my (expensive) area a run in would cost anywhere from $3,500 to $5,000 depending on size. If you are in a cheaper area, you can adjust proportionately.
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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by Marla 100 View Post
              Look at it from the BO's perspective, she has TWO paying boarders horses that get along w/ things as they are now. Your new horse comes in and upsets the apple cart.
              I should clarify -- there are only two of us boarders total, and the third horse is a pony owned by the BO. It definitely is my horse who is causing an issue. He's never had the opportunity to be a bully before, so this was a surprise to me.

              Thanks for all the perspectives. I'll be getting the BO's quote for the new run-in this week, and we'll take it from there.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by PRS View Post
                This is what I would call a "capital improvement" to the farm. Unless it is being constructed in such a way that it is portable so you can move it or remove it if you need to BO pays for it. If you pay for it, it's yours to move or remove as you please.
                THIS.

                Even if it IS your horse causing the problem.

                So, after raising your board to pay for the run-in (which will be thousands, not hundreds, of dollars) when you pay it off will you be able to take the run-in with you? The only way I can wrap my head around this idea is if this BO is a friend of yours and she is really going out of her way to board your guy. Is this her business? Or just her back yard? I can kind of understand if you two are friends and you're just trying to work out some kind of amicable solution.

                I boarded at a place decades ago where there was no run-in in my mare's field, so I would bring her in for bad weather. The BO, who only boarded for family members and retirees - I was the exception to her rule - ended up building a run-in for my mare in her field, and I hadn't even asked for this improvement! She did not raise my board either. Her reasoning was that she would be saving on straw when I brought the mare in, and decreasing the traffic on her property, so it was worth it to her.

                If the BO insists on raising your board, and you're OK with that, then go for it. To me it doesn't seem right for you alone to foot the bill for something that isn't yours at all.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I don't recall the other thread. How big is the run-in? If it's not very big, I wouldn't expect 3 horses to share. Seems like every time I have had more than 2 horses, one or two of them gets left standing outside the shelter. Not from lack of room but because one doesn't share well.

                  This would be something that would improve the property for the BO. If BO insists you pay for it, bring in a portable shelter that you can take with you when you move or you and some friends could build one. You don't have to be a contractor to build a sturdy shelter.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by dacasodivine View Post
                    How big is the run-in? If it's not very big, I wouldn't expect 3 horses to share.
                    I don't know the actual dimensions, but it was considered big enough for three cooperative retirees (a 16h TB, a 14-ish horse and a 13-ish pony) to spend the winter before I got there. The BO described it as the three of them huddling together with one sometimes standing just under the overhang at the entrance but still protected.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The mistake BOs make when building run in sheds is that they design them from a human viewpoint, not a horse's. A 3 sided run in shed makes sense to us because you face it south and you've got protection from the worst weather right? Well, if you're a horse you don't want to be trapped anywhere which is what a 3 sided run in does. The best, safest run in sheds have only two sides on the north and west sides. They are located on the highest part of the paddock/pasture. (this is often NOT the most convenient place for the BO).

                      I'd offer to pay for the above run in. It's not nearly as expensive.
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SMF11 View Post
                        As a BO who runs a retirement farm, I think this should be the BO's cost.

                        However, she should do an economic analysis of the situation and decide if it makes economic sense to add the run in; or if it makes more sense to ask you to leave and keep the status quo.

                        As an aside, a wooden run-in costs far more than several hundred dollars. In my (expensive) area a run in would cost anywhere from $3,500 to $5,000 depending on size. If you are in a cheaper area, you can adjust proportionately.
                        I also think it should be the BO's expense, although if I were the boarder I would probably be willing to chip in towards the expense if I really wanted to stay there.

                        However, I would only expect to $3500-$5000 if I bought it and had it shipped to the site. We built an 8x12' run-in that we divided to allow for a tractor to be housed in the back side, and act as a wind block/extra stall on the front side for less than $1000 - full wood construction, cement footers and metal roof...(ok, the roof was a freebie). It went up in a day with my boarder doing most of the work and my dh helping.

                        But $5000 is a lot unless you're buying one and having it delivered.... I'd expect a local contractor to be able to build one for less than that.

                        ETA: also agree with Kryswyn on 2-sided shelter if the weather will allow it. Ours is 3 sided so we can use it as an extra stall (it has a pipe gate front) but the horses would prefer it if it were 2-sided. If we build another run-in for our pasture we'll probably make it only 2-sides.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SMF11 View Post
                          As an aside, a wooden run-in costs far more than several hundred dollars. In my (expensive) area a run in would cost anywhere from $3,500 to $5,000 depending on size. If you are in a cheaper area, you can adjust proportionately.
                          I have to agree with this. I think you are grossly underestimating the cost of a run in shed. The cheap fabric things cost a few hundred dollars, not a real structure.

                          If my horse was the problem and I really wanted to stay I would sit down with the BO and figure out a fair way to split the cost so my horse was comfortable and no longer an issue.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            with improvement to the farm you have to expect board increase.

                            Of course, it would irk me to be asked to pay for the improvement and get a board increase. I am thinking either or here.

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                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
                              with improvement to the farm you have to expect board increase. Of course, it would irk me to be asked to pay for the improvement and get a board increase. I am thinking either or here.
                              I agree -- but that begs the question of whether I'm responsible for the entirety of the surcharge when there's a second border who uses the same pasture and whose horse would theoretically benefit from the second shed.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                My feeling is that the BO doesn't really need the run-in. He already has a run-in. You're the one that needs the additional run-in because your horse is a management challenge. Does the BO get to keep it if you leave? Yes, but he doesn't really need to build it for himself. A field with one run-in is quite nice.

                                First I would ask yourself if you really like the place and want to stay. If you do, you could offer to front the money for the new run-in. The BO could credit a monthly amount to basically "buy" the run-in from you over a period of time. BO gets the advantage of free financing, you get the run-in that your horse needs. It's a win-win. If you leave before the run-in is paid for, you forfeit the credit.

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by GrayTbred View Post
                                  I don't know the actual dimensions, but it was considered big enough for three cooperative retirees (a 16h TB, a 14-ish horse and a 13-ish pony) to spend the winter before I got there. The BO described it as the three of them huddling together with one sometimes standing just under the overhang at the entrance but still protected.
                                  So only 2 1/2 horses will actually fit? That really does not sound big enough. Would you say it was the size of one or two stalls?

                                  Why didn't dividing help? Was your horse going back and forth chasing the others out? Maybe we can help you figure out how to make the present shelter work.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by GrayTbred View Post
                                    I agree -- but that begs the question of whether I'm responsible for the entirety of the surcharge when there's a second border who uses the same pasture and whose horse would theoretically benefit from the second shed.
                                    The other boarder only benefits because your horse won't share. If I was the other boarder I might balk at paying for the additional run-in given that her horse was fine with the existing set up.

                                    Given that the BO feels the current run-in was sufficient for two horses and a pony in the past, I suspect you will be asked to at least contribute.

                                    However, if you feel that you are being taken advantage of then it won't work -- you will feel resentful. You need to sit down with the BO and talk it through but you also need to be prepared for her to say she won't foot the entire cost for the shelter, in which case you might have to move.

                                    I know that some people feel the barn owner should pay for the new run in, but in the real world, there's nothing to make that happen. If she doesn't think it's worthwhile to spend the $$ in that way, it's simpler to ask you to leave.
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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Kryswyn View Post
                                      The mistake BOs make when building run in sheds is that they design them from a human viewpoint, not a horse's. A 3 sided run in shed makes sense to us because you face it south and you've got protection from the worst weather right? Well, if you're a horse you don't want to be trapped anywhere which is what a 3 sided run in does. The best, safest run in sheds have only two sides on the north and west sides. They are located on the highest part of the paddock/pasture. (this is often NOT the most convenient place for the BO).

                                      I'd offer to pay for the above run in. It's not nearly as expensive.
                                      I'm having a hard time picturing a two sided shed...I assume it has a roof? So you just have a big support pole on the no-wall side? Or are you just talking about a wind-break?
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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by draftdriver View Post
                                        Playing Devil's Advocate here: your horse isn't in need of a run-in. He uses the one that's available. The other horses need a run-in, therefore their owners should help to pay for it.

                                        That said, I think Bogie's answer is quite reasonable. I think that if the BO pays 50% and the other 50% is split between all the boarders who use that field, that would be fair.
                                        And the shoe on yet another foot:

                                        No way! Why should the easy to get along with horses owners be forced to pay for HER horse being an obnoxious bully?

                                        Sure she could move her horse. But what is to say she will not have the same senario at the next farm? Better yet, what if the owner at the next farm tells her what a true pain in the arse her horse is & tells her to move on down the road? At least present BO is willing to literally move the earth to try & make it work with her horse.

                                        And, what is to say her horse will not roam from shed to shed forcing the underlings out? They get cozy under the shelter, Bully notices & goes shoves them out. They wander around in the inclement weather for far too long. Finally go to the other empty shed. Bully notices they are now cozy in there. Goes over & shoves them out. Repeat. Repeat. repeat. I own a Bully, so I know it does happen. Only mine hates the shed. If he is not going to use it by God no one else is either!
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