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Need another opinion

5 replies

devastatednow · 01/01/2014 18:36

Me and dh are thinking of renting a house in the countryside. We have been looking for ages for the right place and think we have found it. The house has 4 stables, a sand school and 9 acres. We were thinking of renting the stables out to help with the rent. We can afford the rent, but it would be a real struggle without this extra income. We have no experience of running a livery yard, but our dd is horse mad and has been riding since she was 7, she is now 15. We were wondering if anyone had experience of running a small livery yard and the possible pitfalls.

OP posts:
Floralnomad · 01/01/2014 18:42

I can see a few issues here ,firstly will you be allowed to sub let the stables / run a business from them under the rental agreement . Secondly do you and your DP have a lot of horse experience as it will be you running it ,not your dd. Personally I wouldn't do it there is not a lot of money to be made in 'small' horse businesses and the cost of maintaining the land etc at a good standard will likely outweigh the income and as it's not your land it will need keeping at a high standard I would imagine .

mrslaughan · 01/01/2014 19:21

plus horses are 24/7.
Also as I understand it, if they are on your land, they are ultimately your responsibility. so if someone has a horse at your place, if they don't look after it properly, you could become liable......
Also if horses get themselves out in the middle of the night, you would be the one getting up, catching them and putting them back.
You would have to really want to do it, to put up with that.

Mirage · 01/01/2014 19:47

I agree with the other posters I'm afraid.Horses are hard work,I spent the majority of today maintaining and fencing my paddock in the pouring rain and I've only got two who live out,no buildings or school to maintain.Are you knowledgeable enough to spot signs of laminitis,colic or other ailments and would you be able to wait around for half a day for the vet,farrier,dentist ect? What will you do with the inevitable muck heap? It can be difficult and expensive to get them removed.

The other killer is insurance.Your insurance may not cover subletting,plus if anyone injures themselves on your property,unless you are properly covered,it could be very expensive.

Also,bear in mind that you will have people and vehicles coming and going from your property at all hours,competition riders or hunters can be at the yard at 6am if not earlier.Are there any neighbours who might be disturbed and complain?

Sorry to put a damper on things,but it can be a minefield getting involved in horses.

backinthebox · 01/01/2014 20:42

My house cost somewhere between £500k and £1million (being deliberately vague here!) which is a typical price for a small equestrian property in the South. It has 5-6 acres, 4 stables and direct access to fabulous hacking. I spend about 4-8 hours a week maintaining fencing, water supplies, grazing, stables, etc and trying to improve the place with just my own horses on it. I could do to spend more time and money on it, too, to keep it to a reasonable standard. Yet when you ask people what they expect to pay for DIY livery, you won't get anyone offer to pay you more than £30 a week, with most people spluttering at that price! There is no money to be made out of running a small yard.

dappleton · 08/01/2014 10:38

I think the fact you will be renting the property will be the biggest problem, can you sub-let the stables and the land under the rental agreement? Second problem will be the cost of insurance.
If the above are no problem don't underestimate the costs of repairs to boxes, fencing, the arena, water supplies, electrics etc....
If you do go ahead make sure you have very good contracts in place and only offer DIY livery and only to people with good references.

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