A Simple Guide To Buying Your First Horse

If you are considering buying a horse there are some important things to take into consideration and in this post, I will address some of these issues. This is a simple guide to buying your first horse.


Firstly buying a horse is a long-term commitment. Horses need daily care, exercise, feeding and looking after. Do you have the time to look after a horse, to exercise it daily, to groom it, to feed it? 

You can have the horse looked after with a livery service, which can include much of this but this can run into hundreds of pounds. Part of the fun of looking after a horse is the grooming and the riding. Just ensure you are committed to a horse if you buy one.


As well as the cost of buying a horse you have to factor in the cost of where it is kept, veterinary bills, bedding, livery, tack, rugs and so on.  You have to ask can you afford to have a horse? 

For example here are some rough costs below from the RSPCA. These can of course vary but it will give you an idea.

Veterinary insurance - £35-£50 a month 
Riding lessons - £30-£50 a time
Good quality feed £30-£40
Bales of hay - £45-£80
Livery costs - anything from £80 to £900 a month

Do your research beforehand to see if you can afford the initial outlay of buying a horse as well as the ongoing costs.

What type of horse

If you are buying your first horse it would be an idea to buy a horse that is a bit older and more experienced. A new inexperienced 'green' horse will need to be trained and will need lots of extra patience and attention.

Did you know you can buy a horse that is looking to be rehomed, and that comes vaccinated and microchipped with their feet and teeth checked?  The RSPCA offers this service and this is a good option as you'll also receive a history of everything that’s happened to them whilst in their care including behavioural assessments.

Viewing a horse 

It's always best to view a horse 2 or 3 times before you decide to purchase the horse. Try to ride the horse at different times of day and in different settings. Ask about the horse's background, and why the horse is for sale. Check if the horse in on medication and ask what for.

A valid horse passport must be with a horse at any time and must transfer to the new owner. Be sure to check the horse passport and contact the Passport Issuing Organisation (PIO) within 30 days to update the passport ownership details. You need to show this to a vet when the animal is seen.

Should you find a horse that ticks all the boxes, a pre-purchase examination (PPE) by a veterinarian is advised. This will pick up any health issues and a five-stage PPE is required to insure horses for vet fees.

Always trust your gut instinct, if the situation doesn't feel right or the horse has behavioural issues then you really should leave the situation as sad as you may feel.


Good quality food is so important for the horse's health, a vitamin and mineral enriched food such as Spillers Horse Feed is a good idea for optimum health and can help supplement their diet of pasture and hay.

This is only a simple guide to buying a horse, If you do decide to go ahead I strongly advise you to research buying a horse in more depth, after all a horse is for life.  Speak to people who already own a horse, and get advice from trusted professionals. 

*Collaborative post


  1. I know nothing about horses but it is certainly a huge responsibility and should be considered carefully.

  2. There is a lot to consider. Obviously, buying a horse isn't to be taken lightly.

  3. This is a great guide. Buying a horse is a huge undertaking and shouldn't be taken lightly. I always wanted a horse when I was younger.