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  1. #1

    Default Trial period when selling

    I'm selling a horse and think I may have found the right home for her, they really like her and want to take her for a two week trial, which I understand and would likely do myself in the situation. But I have never done a trial and am kinda freaking out about it, guess I have heard to many horror stories. The mare will be going to a reputable barn with a good trainer. Do I need to do anything different as the seller?

    Reassure me please!
    for more Joy then you can handle
    http://dangerbunny.blogspot.com/



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct. 9, 2007
    Location
    Central NJ
    Posts
    1,050

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    Yep, get paid the full amount before the trial, to be refunded when/if they return the horse in the same condition as it was sent out. And cash that check right away. Better yet cashiers check or cash.

    Video tape the horse prior to sending out to establish its condition and health.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 20, 2012
    Posts
    748

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    Demand the pre-purchase exam to be done before the horse leaves your property.

    Also, ask the person who's taking the horse to sign a contract as they will return the horse in the same condition as it was delivered, and if not, they should pay full price. The pre-purchase exam can serve as comparison if any problem should arise.

    Lots of stuff can go wrong on an everyday basis, so you need to make sure they won't return the horse with some problem and state you delivered it to them that way.

    Its always a risk, but nowadays its getting harder and harder to sell a horse, so you need to be flexible.

    I wouldn't ask for the horse to be paid in front, if I were the client I wouldn't want to pay. The same way you are afraid something happens to your horse, I would be afraid for my money.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun. 20, 2012
    Posts
    748

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    Demand the pre-purchase exam to be done before the horse leaves your property.

    Also, ask the person who's taking the horse to sign a contract as they will return the horse in the same condition as it was delivered, and if not, they should pay full price. The pre-purchase exam can serve as comparison if any problem should arise.

    Lots of stuff can go wrong on an everyday basis, so you need to make sure they won't return the horse with some problem and state you delivered it to them that way.

    Its always a risk, but nowadays its getting harder and harder to sell a horse, so you need to be flexible.

    I wouldn't ask for the horse to be paid in front, if I were the client I wouldn't want to pay. The same way you are afraid something happens to your horse, I would be afraid for my money.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 19, 2011
    Location
    Coastal Marsh of Texas
    Posts
    1,086

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    Are they so far away they can't try the horse at your farm? If this doesn't work out, will you consider another two week trial with another prospective buyer off property? It takes a horse time to settle into a new barn, routine, etc... Lots to think about and the one who risks it all it you.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr. 27, 2008
    Posts
    2,154

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    What if, instead of "trial period," they buy the horse and have a contract clause giving them 2 weeks to return it as is? By changing the semantics perhaps you can get to the same result and comfort level for all concerned. With all the films and other suggestions above to protect you in case of return.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul. 25, 2003
    Location
    Boston Area
    Posts
    8,347

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    If you send your horse on trial I suggest:

    - PPE before the horse leaves your property to establish soundness (take video too)
    - Contract that establishes all terms of trial including what the person can/cannot do with the horse. This would include: trailering, jumping (frequency/height), who can ride it, can it be taken off property, etc.
    - Deposit up front (I personally wouldn't ask for the full price)
    - Insurance. If the horse is not insured have them take out a short term policy that names you as beneficiary.

    I have taken a horse on trial with these terms and have also sent a horse out on trial. I didn't buy the horse I had (x-rays showed a problem) but the woman who took my mare bought her.

    I also sent my mare with all the feed she needed, turnout boots, etc. and I stopped by unannounced twice to check on her. Come to think of it, I also left her tack as the buyer didn't have a saddle and I didn't want her to use one that didn't fit.

    Good luck!
    Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
    EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug. 25, 2007
    Posts
    8,671

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    Only for a short period (like maybe a long weekend; a week at most) and only with people I KNOW and TRUST.

    G.
    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão



  9. #9

    Default

    My barn owner often sends horses out on a month's trial -- she's gotten a few back, but also sold this way. She's never had a problem with a horse coming back in bad shape. Exception to the rule, but it works for her.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 28, 2012
    Posts
    80

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    If it's a reputable barn/trainer then I would probably allow them to try the horse for a longer period of time.
    When I was selling my guy, someone halfway across the country wanted to try him, they paid for shipping and had a 1 week trial, they absolutely adored him and asked if they could have another week and we said yes. It ended up not working out and they sent him back, but things worked out fine for us, horse came back sound and happy.
    It also made the decision for me that I couldn't sell him and I'm so glad that I made that decision.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar. 1, 2005
    Location
    maryland
    Posts
    5,219

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    I agree with the other posts.

    You have to ask yourself: what happens if they ride the heck out of the horse and she's returned to you lame? They could claim she was unsound to begin with. A thorough PPE and/or equine insurance may protect you.

    If the horse is injured in the field or whatever, who covers that? Be sure to make it clear in the contract. Document her condition well before leaving.

    Might not hurt to ask around to see what trainer / method they use. What you don't need is some idiot trying to "train" her and she comes back headshy or hard to catch.

    Do get the money up front. If they aren't serious enough to at least give you a large deposit, forget it. Some people are such tire kickers. Some people just want to try a variety of horses, maybe not buy any of them, and don't think anything of the hassle they put sellers through.

    Do get a really well-written contract signed before the horse leaves. Make it VERY clear what happens if they don't pay the balance due on the day the trial ends.

    Make sure they pay for shipping both ways.

    I understand that in some barns, doing trials works out. In other situations, maybe not so much. If the horse is going to a stranger and not a trusted trainer's client, exercise more caution.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep. 26, 2010
    Posts
    4,324

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    If I were selling a horse, here's what I would do (or not do):

    Trainer and/or client I know well, horse in training:
    *2 weeks on their property if they aren't local.
    *contract written per @philo's recommendation
    *Flexibility written in for taking horse to a show or off-property
    note: in this case, if I know the horse will be in a good program AND I know them well, I have some incentive to be flexible and really try to make the sale work.

    Trainer and/or client I have some knowledge of but don't know well:
    *Same as above, but perhaps with somewhat less flexibility for taking off the property

    People I don't know from Adam:
    *If they are local, I would allow it only at my barn.
    *If they aren't local, I would be flexible about repeat visits but wouldn't send it out on trial. Just me. I wouldn't want the risk.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov. 23, 2006
    Location
    Port Perry Ontario - formerly Prodomus
    Posts
    2,364

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    we have had horses on trial and only once sent a horse on trial. In all cases we knew the parties well, never had any contracts and in the case of the horse we sold - knew it was a match made in heaven and they had already bought a horse from us - living really close by and had the same coach.

    In the case of the horses we brought in for trial - none of them worked out and couldn't wait to get them back to their owners. That was the worst part - praying that they don't hurt themselves before they went home after deciding not to purchase.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 26, 2010
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    @bravestorm: You make a very good point about the risk on the buyer's side. I don't think I'd want the responsibility either. I've not heard as many people mention the risk to the buyer so I'm glad you did.

    If I were buying, I would definitely want to be able to really ride the horse for an extended period of time, but without appearing to be a tire-kicker. If I were local and were serious about the horse, I would ask for a 1-week trial, but would make the effort to travel to the horse. If I weren't local, I'd offer to pay a non-refundable deposit for the horse in order to try it over a 3-4 day period or something like that to be sure I liked it.



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