How do people afford horses?

(41 Posts)
RayBansWife Mon 07-Jan-13 20:53:21

Really want my own eventually but I work exceptionally long hours so no way I could at the moment. But then if I give up / downgrade my crazy long hours but well paid job no way I could afford to keep a horse! Vicious circle!

Do how do people afford to keep horses?!

Arisbottle Mon 07-Jan-13 20:57:00

They earn a good wage and / or cut back on other things

emsyj Mon 07-Jan-13 20:58:29

Have someone part loaning the horse, so they look after it and ride it for a proportion of the week (DH has done this - as a part loaner, not an owner - he sadly doesn't have time to look after a horse); keep it at a riding school and let the riding school use it for lessons in return for livery costs (don't know how much you'd save doing this but you can enquire at your local school); keep it turned out at grass all year round...

If you're well paid, you could consider getting a horse and keeping it at full livery so that you would just do the fun stuff, or perhaps just getting a part loan so that you have access to a horse a couple of days a week? DH used to pay £100pcm for 2/3 days a week, very very highly schooled and valuable horse - owner away at university and she needed the horse to be exercised regularly.

Arisbottle Mon 07-Jan-13 21:00:16

We loan ours out so that we do not have to do all the care.

Arisbottle Mon 07-Jan-13 21:02:02

Sorry for being a bit snippy in my first post. I read it back and realised how awful it sounded. smile

horseylady Mon 07-Jan-13 21:21:12

Work two jobs, have no life other than work and horses!!! Oh and now my new baby smile

catinsantasboots Mon 07-Jan-13 21:25:39

Don't drink

Don't smoke

Don't buy clothes

Drive old crap car

Don't put unnecessary shoes on said horse (whole other thread which will bring me out in a RAGE) grin

crazyscientist87 Mon 07-Jan-13 21:26:46

ok, you've piqued my curiosity because I used to have a friend who had a horse - how much does it cost annually to keep one? (Her parents have a small farm I think and it was kept there)

StarsAboveYou Mon 07-Jan-13 21:27:41

Same as horseylady. I'm a teacher so I do tutoring in the evenings to subsidise my horse related spending. It's hard but she is my big baby (I have a 10monyh

StarsAboveYou Mon 07-Jan-13 21:33:18

Sorry, I hit post by accident.

It's hard but she is my big baby (I have a 10month old DS now and time is precious with him). I have owned her for over 15 years so I will do whatever it takes to make sure she stays with me and is well looked after. She is now on full livery which is more expensive but takes the time pressure off a little and lets me enjoy the time I have with her instead if spending it mucking out. Although if I'm honest I do miss it sometimes!

N0tinmylife Mon 07-Jan-13 21:35:03

I used to do two jobs to pay for it when I was younger. Now I earn a reasonable amount, so I can manage on one. I just don't buy any new clothes, cut my own hair, and owe the bank lots of money

Callisto Tue 08-Jan-13 09:23:52

I've just got two native ponies so they cost very little to run (not much hay/feed, no shoes, live out most of the time). When I get myself another horse it too will be a native with rock hard feet and the ability to exist on a daily ration of two blades of grass and a sip of water. It doesn't have to be vastly expensive to have a horse, but if you work long hours then full livery would be the only way and that does get pricey.

VicarInaTutu Tue 08-Jan-13 20:47:41

i have been looking into costs because i want my own too in about 10 months probably....

working livery at my yard is £30 a week - includes bedding and basic feeds. this for me is doable.

if not working its £50.

the other costs - well....i will deal with those as and when. i am currently paying £20 per week for riding lessons so it doesnt seem so bad - i know i will need some savings for vets etc and i intend to insure my horse too.

will look at things like shoes nearer the time. i know the costs - im aiming for a native breed on part livery, with a stable available when i need one.

willyoulistentome Tue 08-Jan-13 21:26:27

that's what credit card were ivented for, no?

seriously...what catinsantaboots said. I don't spend ANYTHING on ANYTHING else for me, and it's fine! I probably look like worzell gummage, but who cares!

I spend about £5k a year. Part livery at a small friendly local yard with no school, but great hacking. Costs £380 a mpnth including feed, hay and bedding. Thankfully the girls at the yard like riding her, and are sensible, so she gets exercised without me having to pay full livery or resort to a sharer. I can only ride weekends now, as work FT around school hours, and have 2 primary age kids. Horse can't live out as needs very restricted grazing due to various health problems, otherwise she could be on grass livery.

Credit cards do help when things like big vets bills come in ! Insurance is a good idea, but beware, cos most pet insurers exclude any condition you have claimed for on the renewal. So after 17 years I gave up with vets bills insurance as there was virtually nothing left I could claim for. I still have rider and 3rd party insurance though.

If I had my time again, I would never buy, but would loan. But that's just me being soppy and not being able to bring myself to sell a 20 year old I've owned since she was 3.

VicarInaTutu Tue 08-Jan-13 21:31:04

for me this will be my reward for doing a rather crap and stressful job - i take nothing of my wages for myself - they go on household bills and shopping and kids - when DS finishes uni i want something for me!!

i love riding. i love helping out at the stables. i love horses. it boosts my mood no end and its the only thing i want - so come hell or high water in 10 months im having my own bloody horse and if anyone gets in my way they will be toast!!

willyoulistentome Tue 08-Jan-13 21:50:53

In that case I don't blame you, but I would still loan for a while first to get a taste of what it's like, and what is involved.

Will you be able to keep a horse at the stables you help out at? Do you know how much they charge? If it's your first ned, it's good to keep it somewhere with other experienced folks who will be able to help you out if any issues arise, spot problems you may miss, help with first aid etc..

50BalesOfHay Tue 08-Jan-13 21:58:03

We have 3 horses, one of whom's on loan but which we won't buy (plus one high maintenance one out on loan who'll be back end of this year as will be outgrown and need to semi-retire, plus another one out on loan with view to buy so fingers crossed with her). I would be very reluctant to add up how much they cost, but we wouldn't be without them. Poor but happy thanks to horses smile

VicarInaTutu Tue 08-Jan-13 21:58:14

yeah willy it would be kept at the yard i help out at - and i have serious hero worship of the riding instructor who owns the yard. she is just fab, the real deal when it comes to teaching and the font of all horsey knowledge.
she will help me find a suitable horse because it would be on working livery at her school. i have all the charges and costs. £30 working livery. £50 part livery not working.

i dont think any of my lot think im serious....DD started lessons with me but wont give up her saturdays to come and help out....but i have the bug. its serious.
i kiss horses now. on the nose. my riding school pony and me have a bit of a thing going....smile i dont care what i look like anymore - my roots are showing and there is no mirror at the yard....and i dont care!
its fabulous!! grin

DENMAN03 Tue 08-Jan-13 22:08:19

I have a well paid job now and have one I keep on full livery and another is an international event horse which I share with a sydnicate!

However, I have had horses for many years and at times when not so well paid. I used to cycle everywhere (couldnt afford a car!), worked three jobs and would also take difficult horses to compete and ride for extra cash!

If you are determined enough you can do it. You dont need to keep a horse on full livery if you have time and are dedicated. A native breed can be kept out as long as there is enough shelter and grazing. Equally, loaning is a very good option as is a part share.

Good luck! Im sure you will get there..there really is nothing better than having horses, even if it means never having new shoes for myself!

willyoulistentome Tue 08-Jan-13 22:12:27

yep - know what you mean. After riding as a child, lessons and friends ponies, I gave up for years, but started bak with one lesson a week again in my twenties, which soon wasn;t enough..and was soon 3 a week. Then worked on the yard in return for lessons at weekends, getting to know everyone at the yard. Eventually got a one of the liveries there on loan, and then bought my own girl as an unbroken 3 yr old from a very good friend, (BHS stage 4) who helped me with breaking in. Never looked back. 17 years on, my kids are primary aged, so I am limited to 1 ride a week, and I miss it so much, now I am fatter, older and less fit, I just plod on quiet hacks, rather than compete.

Fredstheteds Tue 08-Jan-13 23:09:40

The horse gets the shoes not me.... Forgo a lot of things, holidays, don't drink , smoke or socialise that much...

CatPussRoastingOnAnOpenFire Wed 09-Jan-13 00:31:08

Don't get a horse, get a pony. MUCH cheaper!

SneakyNuts Wed 09-Jan-13 00:54:30

My sister has a horse, 2 year old van/car and has recently bought a house.
Her and BIL are by no means wealthy, she's just always wanted to own a horse, so it's always been budgeted in.

Pixel Wed 09-Jan-13 01:25:05

Yes tbh I've had horses since I was 15 and old enough to earn money for their keep so it's just something that is budgeted for. I've always managed somehow, even through various redundancies etc. I've never had the things other people seem to find essential (expensive hairdos/clothes/going out drinking/latest gadgets etc) so I don't really miss them, though a proper holiday would be nice!

willyoulistentome Wed 09-Jan-13 08:17:00

I was fine actually till I had kids. Part time work was a killer for the horse budget. Got into loads of debt, which I am still not out of. Can't sell my girl though. She end up as meat in no time at her age and with her health issues.

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