Warm weather is well on the way and not only is the show calendar packed, but riders and horse owners up and down the country are looking to get out for a hack in the sunshine or a gallop along the beach.
If you own a horsebox, this is a great opportunity to hire it out. It’s unlikely that you’re using it all the time, so it’s a chance to earn an extra income while your vehicle sits idle. Plus, you’re likely to meet interesting people with interests similar to your own.
We asked some of our clients about the things they wished they’d known before they got started. Here are some of their comments:
- Other people’s standards are not the same as yours: This comes up a lot. In fact, we often hear stories of hirers not taking care of horseboxes, with spilled drinks in the cabin, scuffs, scrapes and even items going missing. You will need to spend time and money putting things right.
- Animal damage: It sounds obvious, but it bears repeating; it’s not just humans you need to consider, but the horses themselves. They won’t all be comfortable being transported, so you’ll need to be prepared for them to cause damage to your vehicle.
- It takes time: Not only do you need to get the horsebox ready for hire, but it’s safe to say that things involving horses tend to run late. Factor in extra time when people say they’re going to collect and return the horse box, just in case a show over runs or a horse won’t load.
- There’s plenty of paperwork: You’ll need to run DVLA checks for all hires. Plus, if you opt for a pay-as-you-go insurance policy, rather than an annual one, you’ll also have to fill in extra forms every time you want to hire the vehicle out.
Get the right insurance: A standard motor insurance policy isn’t sufficient if you’re hiring vehicles, for a number of reasons. You need a self-drive hire policy that covers your particular needs and the size of your vehicle. For instance, if you have living quarters in the horsebox, you’ll need to have cover for fire caused by cooking and heating. If it’s being taken abroad, this will also need to be added. Our policies also include off-hire cover, so you and other drivers can use the vehicle when it’s not on hire.
You need a self-drive hire policy that covers your particular needs and the size of your vehicle
- Thefts do happen: It’s a horror story, but you should be prepared for your vehicle to not be returned, either through hirer theft, or being stolen while on hire. Consider whether you can do without your horsebox while it’s being recovered, or while an insurance claim is processed.
- Make sure you have breakdown cover with your insurance: If the horsebox breaks down abroad, you’ll want to be sure you can get the vehicle (and any animals) back to the UK.
- Consider the professionals: Some insurers will restrict cover, so you can’t hire the horsebox to professional riders. Make sure you have a policy that will allow you to do this, so you’re covered for professional use.
You may also be interested in: Things to be aware of when starting a self-drive hire business