If you read an ad and the horse was listed for 10,000 but then says "first reasonable offer takes him," what would you consider to be a "reasonable offer?" 9,000? maybe even 7,500?
It makes it sound like they want to get rid of the horse fast. My friend was thinking of offering 5,000 considering the economy and the fact that it is December...but I thought that offering half might just offend the owner and make a deal very difficult.
I understand that this is very subjective and completely depends on the horse...what I can say is that from the pics/video she showed me, any other time of year or if the economy took a turn, the horse would be worth around 10,000 in my area...in December with a poor economy who knows how low they would actually go.
The horse is a BIG, 11 year old "warmblood" (i put it in parenthesis because without papers god knows what "warmblood" actually means)
I'd probably offer five or six thousand. If the owner doesn't want to take it, they'll tell your friend no and your friend can decide whether she is willing to pay more.
On the other hand if your friend really wants the horse and it seems like the seller will get pissy about a low offer and become difficult, then maybe she should offer 7,500. Asking if anyone has made an offer might be a way to get a read on how the seller will react.
It is best to start where you/your friend is comfortable. The seller may say no to a low offer and then your friend needs to decide how bad she wants this horse, if she is willing to offer more or if she is willing to wait it out and see how badly the seller wants to sell the horse. There are always things to consider if you go that route like maybe someone else will make an offer on the horse or the seller will think that the offer is "unreasonable". But until the first offer is made you just never know.
It really will depend on if there are other people putting in offers, and if they have to get rid of it before the 1st of the month. I would think if they are asking $10K and you are ok with just throwing out a number I would say $5500, then go from there. Make sure that you make sure you know what your top is so they don't drive you too high in the heat of the moment. They are the ones that need the out not you.
Look at the pony...what's he worth to you? What's he cost to them (winter board and the chance for the pony to become meat in one second's bad luck)...do they have another horse taking the pony's place...
It's very classical American behaviour to not want to bargain like a camel trader. It is not an insult if you offer 10% of the asking price...it's a kabuki dance. Remember, they want your money...this is what has value, not the pony...they came out announcing their desire for money...anyone's money. You didn't ask them if they wished to sell their pony. Remember this little titbit...they want to sell the pony...how much of your money will they settle for. Your money is in the bank, nice and warm. Their pony is in the field and stall, eating grain, needing shoes and looking for an excuse to hurt itself.
If they want $10K/best offer....offer $4K (bring cash) and if they have a current coggins, bring a trailer just in case.
Last edited by Trakehner; Dec. 17, 2009 at 10:42 PM.
I generally don't put "firm" or "obo" or "offers considered" on my prices. I put a price, and fully expect to be negotiated with. Therefore I am surprised by the number of full asking prices I get. Most of them are TBs coming right off the track, and despite reading for years that they are "a dime a dozen", I get what I'm asking, and it's considerably more then a dime, more in the four digits.
In a "first reasonable offer" situation, I would try to find out how long the horse has been on the market, and if they are boarding the horse. If the horse has been for sale, say, 3 months and is boarded, that's $X going out at the end of each month to keep the horse. If your friend's budget is topped at $5,000, offer the $5000 and if it's not accepted then make it good until, say, the end of the month. Give the owner a number, and be ready to pick up quick at the end of the month. As someone else said though, if you forego a PPE (not recommending but just saying) and don't schedule multiple test rides (showing increased interest) and the horse isn't getting other inquiries, that $5000 in the hand starts looking better then the horse eating in the field as the days go by.
Usually I will feel out the seller, if you chat with them and let them know you are a SERIOUS RIGHT NOW buyer and say, "So what do you really have to have?" often that will give you a clue. If they say $7500 then you can always say "well I have $xxxx" and then they can say yes or no, or maybe meet you in the middle.
While I didn't bargain on my recent buy (the trainer had already gone from $1500 to $600 in the ad) I would, since they invite offers, throw out $5500 to start and see what sticks. Since they put that "reasonable" description in there, I would bet they will say no to slightly more than half, but it might make, say, $7500 sound reasonable.
In this economy...give it a whirl. Without knowing the circumstances there's no way to tell you what to offer, though. That depends on a lot.
From a seller's prospective, I wish I had accepted a lower-than-I-wanted offer on a horse of mine instead of waiting for the better one that never came. I was asking $15k (very fair), was offered $8k or $10k ish, refused, and ended up sitting on him for six more months before selling him for $3k just to get out from under the board. That was 9 months ago that I sold him and he ended up being on the market a total of a year.
With so many situations like mine, people want to get out from under horses right now.
As I always say...the worst they can do is say NO!! Then you just offer higher (if your budget permits). No one in this economy gets offended enough to refuse a second more legitimate offer...
12th floor of the Acme building in a city that knows how to keep it's secrets.
I did the same thing years ago when I turned down 3500 for one I had priced at 5000. I felt I had him price low to begin with, which was true, but he cut his leg, needed minor surgery, suddenly had a blemish and I sold him for 1500 a year later.
The horse before this one I called a friend in tears and said, "I will give her to you."
I have my current one for sale and I assume my price is just the point to start the negotiations.
You will not rise to the occasion, you will default to your level of training.
Ugh. I'm just not a negotiator. I, personally, wouldn't consider 50 percent less to be a "reasonable offer." If I liked the horse and really wanted it (not a tire-kicker, not a bargain-hunter), I'd consider $7,500 to be a "reasonable offer."