From foal to ridden horse. What does it actually cost?

Do you recognize this?


You have a budget of € 5,000 to approximately € 7,500 and have been looking for a nice, healthy (sport) horse for a while. Maybe this is the first horse that you are going to buy, are you looking for a young horse to go and ride competitions with next to your old horse that you have enjoyed for years or maybe you are looking for a horse that you want to train further in the sport and are you gonna sell it again at a later stage with some profit. Whatever your motivation is, the purchase of your new dressage or jumping talent stands or falls with the available budget.


During your search you will discover that with your budget, finding a 3 year old horse that is radio graphically and clinically healthy, has no stable defects, is saddle broken and easy to ride, is quite a difficult task. But maybe you should ask yourself... is that even possible for this price?


We made a calculation?

Maintenance broodmare per year approx. € 2,000

Stud fee and veterinary costs approx. € 2,000.

Costs studbook + costs possible predicates approx. € 550,-

Rearing 2 years + veterinary costs + farrier approx. € 5000

Saddle breaking approx. 2 months approx. € 1.600,-

X-ray examination approx. € 400,-

Total costs of a 3-year-old saddle-broken horse in this calculation approx. € 11,550


Note: The total amount is just an example (prices may vary in different countries). There are many factors that can influence the cost of a 3 year old horse favorably or unfavorably. After all, not every mare is immediately pregnant in just one try, the conditions under which the broodmare is kept differs per breeder and the costs of rearing, payment to the studbook, saddle breaking and radiological examination also vary. It can be stated that a price of € 10,000 for a 3 year old, saddle-broken and radiologically approved horse is a minimal or even below cost price! With this amount, the breeder or owner has (almost) nothing left for all the effort and time they put into the horse!



If you cannot or do not want to increase your budget of € 5,000 / € 7,500, then there is probably no other option than to make a concession when purchasing your new horse. For example: less potential for the sport, a difficult character, a remark on the X-rays, a remark on the exterior or perhaps a stable defect. If you still want to get that perfect horse, then saving up to at least an amount of € 15,000 for a 3 year old seems recommended.


Buying a foal is of course also an option! Price...from approx. € 5,000!

Read here why you should buy a foal instead of a ridden horse.