Leasing a Horse

“Try Before You Buy”

Leasing is often the perfect way to “get your feet wet” without making a long-term commitment in terms of time and finances. Expensive show horses, for example, may be leased for the duration of the show season allowing you to ride and show a better horse than you might be able to afford to buy. Although these types of leases usually involve a Lease Fee that is separate from the Boarding fees of the horse. Leasing a horse is also a great way to try something new such as showing in a new division or with a different breed of horse. Your lease on a horse can extend for a short period (3 months) or a long one (1 year). With a typical lease, during this time the owner retains ownership of the horse but he gives the use of the horse to the lessee. The lessee may or may not have to pay a Lease Fee but he will be responsible for the horse’s monthly expenses including board, shoeing, and routine veterinary care.

Partial Leasing

You may find a horse offered on a partial lease, usually half but sometimes less, and in these cases you get use of the horse for a specified percentage of the week in exchange for half (or less) of the costs of keeping the horse. If you find a suitable horse and come to a verbal understanding with the owner, be sure to get all the details in writing. The Lease Contract should cover the following: length of the lease, terms of payment, terms of use of the horse, insurance, liability, boarding, tack use, showing, treatment of the horse, farrier, vet, and any other personal specifics related to your agreement with the owner.