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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2002
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    4,598

    Unhappy Have you noticed a lot of "crazy" tire kicker buyers lately or is it just me? :D

    Sigh! We have been selling pony hunters for about ten years via the internet and have had some wonderful buyers over the years. Sales have always gone smooth and easy. BUT, the last six months, we have had an overwhelming number of "I'm going to buy two or three right now!" and "I HAVE to have your pony". We've also had several, what I would call, "off the wall" people who just didn't sound like they were all there! We've even had repeated phone calls from these interested buyers and have gotten even as far as getting ready to pay for the pony and then they fall off the face of the earth. This isn't just happening with one or two or three people, it's been happening A LOT lately.

    Now, I realize we have a bunch of wonderful, ready to go pony hunter prospects that are priced well under $1,500-2,500 right now, so maybe it's just that we are attracting a different kind of buyer than the $15,000 ponies we used to sell when the economy was good.

    So, is it just our farm, or are others noticing a huge trend of uninterested buyers who are really wasting a lot of time for sellers?
    www.DaventryEquestrian.com
    Home of Welsh Pony, ISR/Oldenburg & RPSI pony stallions Daventry's Power Play, Goldhills Brandysnap LOM & Alvesta Picasso
    Also home to www.EquineAppraisers.com



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2007
    Location
    Down on the Farm
    Posts
    3,055

    Default

    There is a huge black hole somewhere out in the universe sucking up these buyers...one of mine has dissapeared too, after coming out twice and making numerous promises to me (shipper is coming).

    I feel ya.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug. 15, 2008
    Location
    Gordonsville, Virginia
    Posts
    528

    Default

    Last fall I had lots of tire kickers wasting my time on my $2500 to $3500 projects. Trainers would come with these bad riding students and then act like they were serious, the trainer asking what kind of cut they were going to get, etc.. I have never in my life dealt with such unprofessional people in my 15 years of selling horses. Maybe it is just the economy?
    www.hilltopfarmva.com

    Facebook: Hilltop Farm VA



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct. 9, 2008
    Posts
    318

    Default

    At least people actually make it to your farm to come see the pony. I have had -no lie- 4 people call, schedule appointments, confirm the day before/morning of, and NOT SHOW UP. They were never heard from again. They were not all just average joes looking for a pony either, 2 where trainers from the big show barns we have around here. And these are people that have $15,000-20,000 to spend.

    Grrrrr...... people bother me sometimes
    Last edited by HowDoILook; Feb. 19, 2010 at 08:29 PM.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 3, 2010
    Location
    FL
    Posts
    239

    Default

    It's the type of buyer that comes with a 1500-2500 dollar budget. Not being snotty- I'm not rich, BUT, it just seemed that when I was selling my TB for 3000, so many were tire-kickers, expecting a Bentley for a Chevy Aveo price. Ridiculous. Most were also completely horse-ignorant and noticed imaginary things on my mare. "Why does she paddle? (UM, what??) Why does she have those shoes? (Shoes with clips, LOL), Why can't she tie? (Because she's a typical TB mare, dumbass! She cross ties!) My horse was perfect every time a buyer came and rode her. People were so unprofessional and had no knowledge of equine etiquette, it was so miserable!

    It's not how everyone is. It's the people with no horse knowledge or very limited knowledge with a very low budget, just coming out not knowing what to expect. My horse was VERY nice for the price I was asking. People didn't realize that she was well worth the money- because they really didn't know horses at all, thinking their going to get their child a Grand Prix mount for the price of that same Grand Prix's mount monthly board!

    Haha, maybe raising the price to weed out the idiots can help?
    But George Morris still wears rust-colored breeches- so can I!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 14, 2003
    Location
    Redmond, WA
    Posts
    1,917

    Default

    Tracy, you aren't asking enough money for your fancy ponies! The show homes you want to target are going to be willing to pay more. Honestly, if I saw a pony that cheap I would think it had some sort of flaw. I have a super 4 year old Telynau Royal Charter baby that I need to sell as I moved and can't have 2 anymore...was asking 6,500 just to get her to a show home...no bites. I about double the price and now I hear "Why is that fancy young pony only 10K??". My response, well she is much more now that you said that!



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2002
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    4,598

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LovesHorses View Post
    Tracy, you aren't asking enough money for your fancy ponies! The show homes you want to target are going to be willing to pay more. Honestly, if I saw a pony that cheap I would think it had some sort of flaw. I have a super 4 year old Telynau Royal Charter baby that I need to sell as I moved and can't have 2 anymore...was asking 6,500 just to get her to a show home...no bites. I about double the price and now I hear "Why is that fancy young pony only 10K??". My response, well she is much more now that you said that!
    Lara, I know! The one pony we currently have listed for $1,000 CAD is one of the fanciest and sweetest ponies we've ever had. I know he should be selling for top dollar...if the economy and market were stable! Problem is, for the last year, their prices have been much higher and we've had absolutely no interest. Due to our hay going from $3.50/bale to $10/bale this winter, I just simply can't afford the price of hay, so have dropped their prices. The other big problem is, American buyers are just NOT purchasing from Canada right now with the poor economy and are purchasing closer to home....which puts us in a horrible position. I know if I lived in the U.S., they would likely all have sold by now. If I had a big pasture I could shove them out on for a year and wait out the economy, I would. But we only have 10 acres, and with the high price of hay this year, it makes it really difficult, so decided it would be better to cut our losses and find the best homes I can right now. Sigh, darn economy! Who would have though the babies I was selling for $7,000 two years ago would now be priced at $1,000 with no takers.
    www.DaventryEquestrian.com
    Home of Welsh Pony, ISR/Oldenburg & RPSI pony stallions Daventry's Power Play, Goldhills Brandysnap LOM & Alvesta Picasso
    Also home to www.EquineAppraisers.com



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Posts
    288

    Default

    Daventry, love, love your ponies but the cost of getting them to the SE U.S., where I live, would probably be prohibitive. Otherwise, there might very well be one standing in my barn right now! It is frustrating to both yourself as a seller and myself as a buyer.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2004
    Location
    Virginia. We Do Ponies!
    Posts
    11,904

    Default

    I agree with LovesHorses & kypeep.

    Your ponies are priced too low AND the cost of getting them to the states is too high.

    Sucks.
    Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver, Equine Insurance Specialist



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2002
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    4,598

    Default

    While it is only about $1,200 for trailering to get a pony down to the U.S., the biggest thing I've noticed over the last two years is that American buyers just aren't willing to purchase outside of the U.S. regardless. I sure hope the economy starts bouncing back soon! We've even offered to do an awesome show deal package with training free of charge and just paying for hay so the babies can stay here and show with us for the next year, and then go to their new home...still no takers.
    Last edited by Daventry; Feb. 20, 2010 at 11:51 AM.
    www.DaventryEquestrian.com
    Home of Welsh Pony, ISR/Oldenburg & RPSI pony stallions Daventry's Power Play, Goldhills Brandysnap LOM & Alvesta Picasso
    Also home to www.EquineAppraisers.com



  11. #11
    Join Date
    May. 23, 2006
    Posts
    1,362

    Default

    I just quickly looked at your website (nice!) so you may already have this ...

    What about a section under Sales about "buying from the US", with information on approximate shipping costs, what kind of health certificates are needed, a link to a currency exchange calculator (if your prices are shown only in Canadian $), and how Daventry can help with all that, etc.

    Just a thought.
    ...somewhere between the talent and the potato....



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr. 2, 2003
    Posts
    4,758

    Default

    ^ that would definitely help me as an american buyer. There's 2 ponies on there I'd love to bring home, and I'm looking, but the thought of importing AND trucking them 3500 miles to massachusetts is daunting. I've been watching one of those ponies on the site for at least 2 years and I still like her-- but hard to imagine that kind of undertaking.

    $1200 to import and another good $1500 to trailer across country adds a lot, not to mention the health concerns for trailering a horse that far in the middle of winter like it is now.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2002
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    4,598

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by soloudinhere View Post
    ^ that would definitely help me as an american buyer. There's 2 ponies on there I'd love to bring home, and I'm looking, but the thought of importing AND trucking them 3500 miles to massachusetts is daunting. I've been watching one of those ponies on the site for at least 2 years and I still like her-- but hard to imagine that kind of undertaking.

    $1200 to import and another good $1500 to trailer across country adds a lot, not to mention the health concerns for trailering a horse that far in the middle of winter like it is now.
    $1,200 is for the trailering costs. There are no other costs except for a negative Coggins and health papers, which generally costs about $90 US and an approximate $100 in brokerage fees. Canada/U.S. falls under the NAFTA free trade agreement, so there is no charges to import a horse. Honestly, it's no different in price than what you would pay to purchase a pony from, say, California and have it shipped home.

    I'm not sure why so many people think the trailering end of things is hard. People from the Northern U.S. travel down to show in Florida for the winter all the time. Having to go a few extra hours from Canada doesn't make a whole lot of difference. Actually, I know a lot of Canadian Grand Prix riders myself who leave in the middle of winter with their horses and travel down to Florida to show for the winter/spring.

    I guess in the past, we've been used to dealing with the same clients and trainers over and over again who know it's actually cheaper to bring them down from Canada than to purchase them in the U.S. With the exchange rate, Americans end up saving a bit of money (although right now, our dollar is pretty much at par with yours). We have mostly sold to the U.S. East Coast (Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, etc.) and nearly all of the ponies have gone during the winter or early spring. They've all gone on air-ride vans that the Olympic and Canadian Equestrian Team horses are shipped on and get a comfy ride, and usually a box stall on the way down, and have all arrived healthy and happy.

    Maybe I should be putting something on my website! Problem is, the Americans who are under the impression that it is too expensive to purchase from Canada likely wouldn't be on my site and seriously interested anyways. I wonder how many people would see the "Information about shipping to U.S." link and not even bother to click on it? Hmm
    www.DaventryEquestrian.com
    Home of Welsh Pony, ISR/Oldenburg & RPSI pony stallions Daventry's Power Play, Goldhills Brandysnap LOM & Alvesta Picasso
    Also home to www.EquineAppraisers.com



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Posts
    288

    Default

    Daventry - I am the type of person who would definitely benefit from a link like that on shipping. I don't mind shopping by video - have bought wonderful horses/ponies that way - and particularly love to deal with breeders like yourself. However, I honestly don't want to spend the time and effort to teach myself the in's and out's of importing from Canada or elsewhere. When someone can lead me through the process, it makes it SO much easier for me to contemplate buying from outside the U.S. The initial price of your ponies is very reasonable - if I know what it costs to ship them and how best to do it for the pony's health and safety, that makes a purchase from someone like yourself ever so much more enticing. So, the answer is YES, please, please post such a section on your website! If you have certain shippers you like, that sort of information would be useful as well. So far, you've made a great case in my mind for buying from you -- I had no idea that getting a pony here from Canada could be quite so easy.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2002
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    4,598

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kypeep View Post
    Daventry - I am the type of person who would definitely benefit from a link like that on shipping.
    Thanks for letting me know. I guess we'll make sure to keep a link to that information on our Sales Page. I've already had people mention to me that they had no idea how cheap it was to purchase and ship from Canada!
    www.DaventryEquestrian.com
    Home of Welsh Pony, ISR/Oldenburg & RPSI pony stallions Daventry's Power Play, Goldhills Brandysnap LOM & Alvesta Picasso
    Also home to www.EquineAppraisers.com



  16. #16
    Join Date
    May. 23, 2006
    Posts
    1,362

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daventry View Post
    With the exchange rate, Americans end up saving a bit of money (although right now, our dollar is pretty much at par with yours). We have mostly sold to the U.S. East Coast (Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, etc.) and nearly all of the ponies have gone during the winter or early spring. They've all gone on air-ride vans that the Olympic and Canadian Equestrian Team horses are shipped on and get a comfy ride, and usually a box stall on the way down, and have all arrived healthy and happy.
    This! put stuff like this on your website.

    I wonder how many people would see the "Information about shipping to U.S." link and not even bother to click on it?
    Doesn't matter how many don't click on it --- it's the number who DO that's important! Help create more Americans "who know it's actually cheaper to bring them down from Canada than to purchase them in the U.S."
    ...somewhere between the talent and the potato....



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov. 18, 2009
    Location
    Columbia, SC
    Posts
    315

    Cool

    I dunno about you guys but I know a great deal when I see one...Da Vinci is going to be mine!!!
    Grassfield Sport Horses, LLC

    Follow us on facebook!!!



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec. 23, 2005
    Location
    Harrisonburg, VA
    Posts
    2,322

    Default

    I dont think it's just you Daventry. Hang in there. Many of the pony breeders in US are experiencing such sluggish sales.
    It's so hard to plan for as a breeder. One minute, the babies sell as quick as they can be on the ground. The next minute, they are backlogged. It's been same here, Power's babies were selling like hotcakes, then BAM -- I still have all 4 babies from 09, with 4 more soon to hit the ground. All quality nice babies at very cheap prices -still standing in my paddocks.
    And as far as breeding, Power had his best year ever--last season, when the economy was tumbling. You never know. I wonder what this season will bring as I think it is worst this year than it was last--despite the media telling us that things are getting better. Ponies are luxury items, and its going to be a long time til the middle market can get back to where it was 3 years ago. I do not see pony pricing of the middle market coming back fast at all. Quality ponies are much cheaper now to buy than they were 10 years ago when I had 2 young daughters showing.

    As far as tire kickers-- you just never know. There will always be people out there that waste our time. But you never know when they will wire the money the next day. It's just human nature and what we have to deal with.

    I do think in your situation, the high shipping cost is part of it. With the economy being so hard hit & many owners & breeders scrambling to get rid of ponies, the shoppers do not have to go so far to find a good deal on a quality pony. It might be right under their nose, so to add $1200 to the price, might just be the deal breaker.

    Hang in there, it will get better.
    Windswept Stables-Specializing in Ponies
    Sales, Breaking,Training,Showing, Stud Service

    Home of 2008 Sire of Year Reserve Champion
    Pony Hunter Breeding - Empires Power

    www.EmpiresPower.com



  19. #19

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daventry View Post
    I wonder how many people would see the "Information about shipping to U.S." link and not even bother to click on it? Hmm
    In addition to what other people have said, consider the reverse: you put the page up and it gets indexed. If the page is written and set up right, it'll start coming up in the search engines when people search for "cost to import horse from Canada" or "shipping horse from Canada to US" or whatever.

    If nothing else, this will get your farm name out more and drive more traffic to your website. Those visitors might not buy, but they might remember your website when they hear of someone looking.

    In other words: don't just think about whether or not visitors already on your site will look at this link. Think about using this link to get more traffic TO your site.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb. 17, 2002
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    409

    Default You're definitely not the only one!

    Daventry - we are having the same problem with extremely weird buyers, and we are in Ontario so can identify with the lack of American sales as well. Normally about 95% of what we sell goes to the US but in the last 18 months almost nothing.

    It must be something in the air because for about the last 6-12 months we've had so many weird situations with buyers who are SO keen and "DEFINITELY" buying whatever horse, like money is going to be wired the next day or they are coming with the trailer next day or coming to look next day or whatever. Then virtually ALL of them have either disappeared completely - but the really weird thing? Of the last 10 or so buyers almost EVERY one of them has said the day before or the day of their visit, payment etc that they had a car accident, totalled their car and either now can't afford the horse or have to "wait" until their car is fixed. This is including people supposedly on their way driving that same day and their truck pulling the trailer "breaks down" and they have to turn back or whatever. And then you never hear from them again or if you do, they are no longer buying the horse. Man if I hear the car thing one more time I'm going to pull my hair out! Is this just the worlds most popular excuse right now?! Anyone getting the same thing? And also it's not on cheap horses, some of these have been 40-100k sales and still the same weird stuff.

    Thanks to those that suggested posting info on our Canadian websites explaining costs of importing to the US. I hadn't thought people thought it was such a barrier, we've sold so many to the US over the years. We know lots of shippers and have lucked out on some great rates for buyers such as $500 to Florida and $550 to Texas when they have had empty space. But even at full price it's really not that bad and as Daventry said the actual border costs are a couple hundred bucks type of thing for vet work and broker.



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