Your Guide to Starting a Horse Boarding Stable

By US Legal Forms Team
5 min read
Table of contents

Whether you are an avid equestrian or just passionate about horses, you may be considering starting horse boarding stables. 

Though it may seem like the simpler option to pay a third-party boarding facility for services, you are not always guaranteed a positive experience. The barn may not be well kept, the stable manager may not be reliable, or you may not find a boarding contract that suits your needs as a horse owner. 

Whatever the reason, starting your own horse boarding operation e may be a fulfilling business venture and you probably have a lot of questions. In this article, we will review what it takes to start a horse boarding stable, including the legalities involved and tips to ensure your facility provides top-notch horse care.

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Starting a Horse Boarding Stable: A Guide for Horse Owners 

Anyone starting a business needs to plan ahead and get organized, and it’s no different with a horse boarding facility. After all, a stable is a legitimate part of the horse industry.

Horse  owners should make a plan, legally establish their business, find a location for their business, hire team members, such as a stable owner or barn owner, properly equip their horse boarding facilities, and advertise themselves to the equestrian community. Let’s walk through each of these steps.

Make a Plan

Before you do anything, put pen to paper and outline what you expect from your horse boarding stable.  What are your goals? How will you solve problems for your customers? How many horses will you board and which additional  services, such as specialized feeds or indoor arenas, will you offer? 

It may be helpful to draw on your own experiences. What have you liked about any boarding stables you’ve been to in the past? Is there another horse boarding operation in your area? If so, what will set yours apart from competitors, and how could you do things differently or better? 

How will you handle horse boarding contracts?  What rules and regulations will you have in place to maximize each horse’s health?  What do you expect from your customers and what should your customers expect from you? 

How will you actually operate your horse boarding facility ? Will you be the main boarding manager or will you hire a team? 

Financially, how much capital do you have to start your business and how much more will you need? Remember to include the boarding fee structure, the cost of liability insurance from an insurance carrier or insurance agent, and provisions for emergency care in your financial planning.

Really think through your goals and visualize your horse ownership business. Get your ideas down on paper to help you organize your thoughts and figure out your next steps. 

Legally Establish Your Business

You may think horses and laws don’t belong in the same sentence, but in the horse boarding business, they absolutely do.

Hiring a lawyer may help you incorporate your boarding operation  and figure out the necessary insurance coverage to guard against certain risks, such as equine illnesses like potomac horse fever. 

In addition, establishing a good working relationship with a legal adviser now will come in handy down the line should you encounter a situation where you need quick legal guidance. 

Find a Location for Your Business

You know what they say – location is everything. Have you already scoped out a barn or a boarding facility? How much space will you need for full board or pasture board options, and will your accommodations include an indoor arena or sufficient ventilation for the horses’ daily care?

Maybe you’re considering building your facility from the ground up. Wherever your horse boarding barn  will be, you need to secure the location and consider the boarding fee necessary to cover these costs.

Hire Team Members

Whether or not you will act as the facility owner or stable manager, you may need to hire staff.

How many people you’ll need will depend on the size of your business and the services you will offer. 

However, caring for horses and maintaining a boarding barn and stable requires a great deal of work. It would be in your best interest to employ experienced individuals who can manage the day-to-day care, feeding program, and health care and maintain a perimeter fence for safety.

Beyond a stable manager and people in direct contact with horses, you will likely need to hire for other positions, like accounting, sales, and marketing. 

Equip Your Horse Boarding Facility

You will need to ensure that your barn and stables are properly equipped to house and care for horses, including retired horse accommodations. You will need a constant supply of quality hay, specialized feeds, water systems, and appropriate stalls cleaned regularly, among many other requirements. 

You’ll need a fully equipped feed room, tack room, office, and barn – this includes thinking through supplies like brushes, feed buckets, saddles, hoof picks, bridles, mucking equipment, and so on. 

Once your facilities are fully equipped and well-set up, you will also need to think about investing in maintenance to keep them in pristine shape. 

Advertise Yourself

So, you’ve got your horse boarding stable set up and looking great. Now, you’re ready for business! So, how do you get horse owners  through the door? 

You’ve got to have a marketing strategy. How do you plan on getting the word out about your boarding facility for horses? There are different avenues to consider:

  • Traditional advertising like billboards, magazine and newspaper ads, and promoting yourself at local feed shops, equestrian events, and so on 
  • Online advertising like a website, social media pages, social media ads, display ads, email marketing, and an SEO strategy 
  • Never underestimate the importance of word-of-mouth in the busy equestrian community. Once you’ve got enough business and as long as you maintain an excellent reputation, you can count on your loyal customers recommending you to others in their circles; however, please note that you should never rely on word of mouth as your main source of advertising!

You may need to hire a marketing expert or social media specialist to help you with your marketing efforts, as this is one area where it will pay to invest. 

Get Your Documents Organized 

Once you’ve established your horse boarding stable business, you need to ensure a great experience for your customers, and this starts with efficient processes on your end. And we know that where there are processes, there is paperwork. 

There are plenty of documents involved in the care of horses, including boarding agreements for horses, general boarding stable agreements, and horse boarding rules and regulations. Having efficient processes and organized documents, like a current negative coggins test or a health certificate, is essential for a seamless boarding experience. You may be wondering where to find forms that are specific strictly to the business of horses. 

US Legal Forms is an online library of state-specific legal forms, with more than 85,000 documents in their library. 

You can browse the collection of horse forms that pertain to the state your business is in and easily download and complete the relevant forms. Need guidance? USLF gives you access to premium experts who can help you with completing your forms and making sure they are legally sound. 

Equine law exists to protect parties in the horse industry, and attention to legal matters is crucial. Having easy access to necessary forms will help ensure you’re on the same page with your clients regarding their personal belongings, any additional fees, or the owner’s responsibility.

Check out our horse form library on US Legal Forms and best of luck with your adventure in horse boarding stables!

The information contained in this article is provided for informational purposes only. It should not be construed as any financial, legal, accounting, or tax advice on any subject matter and should not be relied upon for those purposes. You should not act or refrain from acting on the basis of any content included in this article without seeking legal or other professional advice. The contents of this article contain general information and may not reflect current legal developments or address your situation. We disclaim all liability for actions you take or fail to take based on any content on this article. The operation of this website does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and airSlate Legal Forms, Inc. or airSlate, Inc

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