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Buying a horse during pandemic?

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    Buying a horse during pandemic?

    Has anyone bought a horse during this coronavirus pandemic? Have horse sales slowed down? Curious.

    #2
    I’m vetting one this week 🤷🏻*♀️ But in talking to the selling trainer, she mentioned her business has seen a decline and has had several clients pull their horses off of the market.
    You could probably argue that sales #s have stayed the same or close to, but this could be due to an increase in sellers needing to get horses off of their bill and willing to sell for a discounted price.
    Last edited by tatertots; May. 6, 2020, 07:59 PM.

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      #3
      Someone in my barn bought a horse at the beginning of all this. I've seen several "congrats" posts on fb of horses being sold. I'm seeing horses listed at normal prices. I saw one specific "COVID fire sale" post of an apparently lovely young prelim horse for a bargain basement price. I can say, I'd rather being buying than selling right now. And who knows what it's going to look like in 3 or 6 months. It could get ugly.
      The big guy: Lincoln

      Southern Maryland Equestrian

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by tatertots View Post
        I’m vetting one this week 🤷🏻*♀️ But in talking to the selling trainer, she mentioned her business has seen a decline and has had several clients pull their horses off of the market.
        You could probably argue that sales #s have stayed the same or close to, but this could be due to an increase in sellers needing to get horses off of their bill and willing to sell for a discounted price.
        Curious as the why they pulled their horses off the market? Do they want to keep said horses in hopes the market gets better, at some point?

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          Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by tatertots View Post
          I’m vetting one this week 🤷🏻*♀️ But in talking to the selling trainer, she mentioned her business has seen a decline and has had several clients pull their horses off of the market.
          You could probably argue that sales #s have stayed the same or close to, but this could be due to an increase in sellers needing to get horses off of their bill and willing to sell for a discounted price.
          Is the horse near you or far? If far did you travel to trial? Another dilemma.

          Comment


            #6
            I’ve seen lots of sales lately.. fancy fancy upper level horses, random green horses, people trying to sell off broodmares, etc.

            Lots of people trying to sell their project/back-burner horses. I was ready to buy a stud colt directly off the track (like I have with my last two) thing sold in an hour (before my husband could get home to give me his bank info)

            Seems like shipping prices have gone down. I got two good quotes from CA to MT. Last time I was looking shipping was 2k for the same route.
            https://www.instagram.com/streamlinesporthorses/

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              Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by Duckz View Post
              Someone in my barn bought a horse at the beginning of all this. I've seen several "congrats" posts on fb of horses being sold. I'm seeing horses listed at normal prices. I saw one specific "COVID fire sale" post of an apparently lovely young prelim horse for a bargain basement price. I can say, I'd rather being buying than selling right now. And who knows what it's going to look like in 3 or 6 months. It could get ugly.
              I wonder too about prices getting worse. Kind of the same idea for real estate. No crystal ball makes it hard, lol.

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                Original Poster

                #8
                Originally posted by streamline View Post
                I’ve seen lots of sales lately.. fancy fancy upper level horses, random green horses, people trying to sell off broodmares, etc.

                Lots of people trying to sell their project/back-burner horses. I was ready to buy a stud colt directly off the track (like I have with my last two) thing sold in an hour (before my husband could get home to give me his bank info)

                Seems like shipping prices have gone down. I got two good quotes from CA to MT. Last time I was looking shipping was 2k for the same route.
                Like the shipping discounts. I was looking at a horse in CA. How are you seeing/trialing them, virtually or traveling?

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                  #9
                  olim2005 off of pictures/videos. Last two I’ve bought sight unseen, newest horse I had hubby jump on him at a horse sale.

                  Im not sure how the pandemic is effecting trials/test rides etc. Seems like you can’t really try horses at the moment. I
                  https://www.instagram.com/streamlinesporthorses/

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I'm selling mine and have lots of serious interest. Granted, mine is in the four figure range, so that makes a difference. I think people are looking for "Covid deals."

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Hoofbeat_Heartbeat View Post

                      Curious as the why they pulled their horses off the market? Do they want to keep said horses in hopes the market gets better, at some point?
                      I know of one that was in full training to get the horse sold. The farm was shut down to boarders and to potential buyers. So they pulled the horse and put it somewhere cheaper. This horse was in a price range and target market that would not lend itself to remote sales. This particular barn only does full training. It is not a boarding barn.
                      Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)

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                        #12
                        I definitely think the cheaper horses are moving better for a few reasons.
                        1. People are trying to find a deal, and with the OTTB's especially, I think we have been seeing a lot of really NICE horses who would have otherwise had a career at the track.
                        2. These horses are easier to buy sight unseen. You know what they are, that they need to be trained/retrained, so there's less hesitation. If I was looking for a made horse right now, I would wait until I could try it in person.

                        I bought a horse about 2 weeks ago. She was as described above - a nice OTTB who hadn't yet gotten the chance to race and was in the lower 4 figures.
                        My CANTER cutie Chip and IHSA shows!
                        http://www.youtube.com/kheit86

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by olim2005 View Post

                          I wonder too about prices getting worse. Kind of the same idea for real estate. No crystal ball makes it hard, lol.
                          My guess is that both of those markets are going to crash hard. But you're talking to someone who bought a house in 2006, so take my opinion with a grain of salt
                          The big guy: Lincoln

                          Southern Maryland Equestrian

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Looking to buy and finding so are a lot of others.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I shopped for 5 or 6 months before luckily finding my new horse in Ocala in late February, a couple of weeks before everything shut down. Had we not found her when we did, I would have continued shopping, but it probably would have changed how we went about it. I would have been thinking about it more from a "can we have the horse shipped to us for a few days to try it" perspective rather than going to sit on them at the seller's farm, and that would have limited my market because of course not everyone is going to be willing to do that, and you would only be looking within a reasonable shipping distance. I'm not convinced the top end of the market will take much of a hit, but there will certainly be segments of the market where I think you'll see flexibility in price to get one sold.

                              Comment


                                #16
                                I quit shopping in early March. Starting up now, but only things that I can drive to within a day to try. I don't feel comfortable flying right now, and would like to avoid having to stay over in a hotel if at all possible.

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  My horse was for sale at my trainer's barn. She didn't really advertise her as much during all of this, but the mare finally sold two weeks ago after being for sale for months. I will say, the family who bought her was very nervous about doing it during these times, but then another person was interested and they quickly put a deposit down, vetted her, and purchased her.

                                  I think it really depends on where you are located and the right person at the right time. I feel like no matter what, the stars have to align when selling (or buying) horses.

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by joiedevie99 View Post
                                    I quit shopping in early March. Starting up now, but only things that I can drive to within a day to try. I don't feel comfortable flying right now, and would like to avoid having to stay over in a hotel if at all possible.
                                    I had to travel with my horse for her to get a bone scan a couple weeks ago - I found that many hotels are actually closed (that could be because I'm in CA and shelter in place orders are ongoing). I chose an Airbnb in an area typically designed for tourism (wine country) - it was easy to confirm that the place had been vacant for weeks. There's still the chance of the cleaning person and the house owner having been inside it closer to the time of my trip, but that's way fewer people than a hotel room. Also, I have a UV-C light ray device that helps to disinfect surfaces - with all of that, it felt like a much reduced risk.

                                    I agree flying would make me nervous. A colleague came back from London recently, and based on her getting Covid symptoms at the very last day of her 2-week post-travel quarantine, I think it's very possible she picked up the virus on the flight.

                                    I'm casually looking right now, but I don't want to seriously look until I can more easily travel (including driving around - so much is closed in CA with shelter in place, it's still not a great time until next month, assuming they don't extend the full order again). I do wonder if some prices will just keep dropping or become more flexible anyway (since I'm looking for a young prospect and those seem to have fluidity in pricing sometimes as it is).
                                    Mr. Sandman
                                    sand me a man
                                    make him so sandy
                                    the sandiest man

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                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by Duckz View Post
                                      Someone in my barn bought a horse at the beginning of all this. I've seen several "congrats" posts on fb of horses being sold. I'm seeing horses listed at normal prices. I saw one specific "COVID fire sale" post of an apparently lovely young prelim horse for a bargain basement price. I can say, I'd rather being buying than selling right now. And who knows what it's going to look like in 3 or 6 months. It could get ugly.
                                      That was a typo. It was $15K and not $5. But even for $15K it was a good price (though less nutty).
                                      ~Veronica
                                      "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
                                      http://photobucket.com/albums/y192/vxf111/

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                                        #20
                                        I have seen a ton of project/back burner horses for sale. Lots of ungelded 3 year olds, untouched horses from peoples fields, etc. I think the more "undesirable" (smaller buyers market) horses are going up for sale first. People are hurting, in my area at least. I have seen one or two really nice jumpers marketed at what most be a Covid-19 emergency sale price. If I had the money and the room, and still showed, I would have snatched one of them up.

                                        I think we are going to see a decline in prices. I'd much rather be a buyer than a seller at this time. Right before all this happened I had gone to look at a mare, and had to send in adoption paperwork to the BLM. I decided to adopt her, sent everything in, and it took a good 5 weeks to get it back (usually its closer to 3 or 4 days), but the BLM was still operating, just seemed sort of backlogged and slower response times from my area representative. She was delivered 3 weeks ago. As much as I wanted to go see her and mess with her while I was waiting for the adoption to finalize, I didn't because of the pandemic. We did things as carefully as we could when she delivered her as well. She unloaded her and put her in the pasture, we stayed at least 6 feet apart while talking, never shook hands, etc. But it can be done. Where there is a will there is a way!

                                        Another point to make, I'm only $125 into my horse on "purchase price". If I were looking for a more expensive horse, I might give pause at this time. I certainly wouldn't be running out buying a $25k horse during this time (even if I had that kind of money). The markets are volatile, people are losing their jobs, businesses are closing. I wouldn't put a large chunk of money in a horse as an investment until I waited this out a few more months to see how things were going economically.

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