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Selling Horse Sight Unseen

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  • Selling Horse Sight Unseen

    I’ve been contacted by a trainer who lives many states away from me who is very interested in purchasing my horse sight unseen. I’m not someone who sells many horses, so I am scared about this. I know that I need a good sales agreement, but I can’t find any good ones outlining the risks of a sight unseen sale. Additionally, what would be the safest form of payment?

    I’ve checked the trainer’s references and everything seems ok, but I don’t want to get tangled up in something crazy if I can avoid it.
    Anyone have any advice or any red flags that I might have overlooked? Is this something I should even entertain?

  • #2
    It is done all the time. A direct wire transfer from bank to bank is probably the best way to receive payment. Your bank can tell you what they need and what the fees are. Buyer should pay any wire transfer fees. A standard bill of sale should work fine. Each party should have a signed original. There will be some coordination between you and the buyer in regards to shipping and medical forms to cross state lines. Don't ship horse until all funds have been received by you and all paperwork is in order. Make sure buyer receives all registration papers and ownership transfer forms.


    • #3
      Have them wire money to your bank. Set up a separate bank accounr for that purpose if you are still concerned.

      I have sold a horse sight unseen once. He was my heart horse and the man who purchased him was across the country. After several phone conversations I finally agreed to sell him and we wrote up a sales contract that stated the horse and any injuries that may occur to him were the responsibility of the new owner once the horse got on the shipper's trailer. It has ended up being a fantastic, absolutely perfect forever home for my big guy and I still get periodic updates through facebook. No regrets.


      • #4
        I've been on both sides of this (buying unseen and selling unseen). Worked out great for me both times. Good luck to you, sounds like you've done your homework with this trainer too.


        • #5
          Most commonly on these forums you'll hear about it with track horses, but it definitely happens!

          I almost bought my filly sight unseen, but since her breeder was willing to hold her long enough for me to get cross-country plane tickets to visit her, I had vacation time coming, and could make the whole trip a vacation I flew out to see her first instead. I'm really glad I did because now I can consider her breeder a friend, not just someone from whom I bought a horse - but I pretty much knew I was buying her before I ever saw her in person.

          One of my friends just bought a filly sight unseen, and is sending her to be bred before she gets here. She knows the bloodlines very well and what combination of bloodlines should work well, and has started many horses, so she's not overly concerned. This same friend had some amateurs interested in buying a horse she had for sale sight unseen, and she wouldn't let them because he was not ready to be good for just any rider at the time and she wanted to do her best to find a good fit for him. She ended up finding a perfect fit for him (plus he had more hours under saddle which helped make him more consistent.) I really think it just depends - if it's a knowledgeable horse person who has an idea what they're looking for, it can be great.

          Given this is a trainer, I suspect that she is probably looking to re-sell the horse, so it's up to you how you feel about that happening. She may have someone specific in mind, and could re-sell your horse for a huge profit in a few days, but it might not work with that individual, and the horse could go on to a home outside her barn as well.
          If Kim Kardashian wants to set up a gofundme to purchase the Wu Tang album from Martin Shkreli, guess what people you DON'T HAVE TO DONATE.


          • #6
            I basically bought my guy sight unseen from Chigaco. Agreed to buy him and a price, she drew up a bill of sale and got his health cert & coggins in order before we got there. We gave her a cashiers check when I picked him up and we have no regrets. One of the best horses I have ever had.
            Celtic Charisma (R.I.P) ~ http://flickr.com/photos/rockandracehorses/2387275281
            Proud owner of "The Intoxicated Moose!"
            "Hope is not an executable plan" ~ My Mom
            I love my Dublin-ator


            • #7
              Only red flag I can see is the Buyer not doing a good PPE or agreeing that they are buying the horse "as is, where is."

              IMO, once the deal is done and you are paid, there should be no room for the buyer claim "not as described." It's the buyer's job to do due diligence in checking out the horse, but it can save you some grief if you look for someone who knows this, too.

              Hope it works out for you!
              The armchair saddler
              Politically Pro-Cat


              • #8
                Originally posted by Showjumper28 View Post
                I basically bought my guy sight unseen from Chigaco. Agreed to buy him and a price, she drew up a bill of sale and got his health cert & coggins in order before we got there. We gave her a cashiers check when I picked him up and we have no regrets. One of the best horses I have ever had.
                That's what I'm planning to do this weekend. Looking at two horses, taking a cashier's check for the price of the first and a another check for the price difference on the second, which is priced a little higher - bank will cancel the second check if I choose the lower-priced horse. Hope the one I choose turns out to be one of my best, too.


                • #9
                  We have bought and sold horses sight unseen before, and it's worked out well. My only suggestion is to make sure you have a very solid bill of sale (as with all sales) that includes any and every possibility of things that can go wrong.

                  Wire transfers and checks (that have been cleared by your bank before horse is to be picked up) both have worked out well for us. I would highly suggest to keep away from PayPal and Credit Card transactions, as they can be reversed even after the money has been put into your account.
                  Lorelei Farm - Welsh and Riding Ponies - Visit us on Facebook!
                  Breeding show quality Welsh Ponies for hunters, dressage and driving!


                  • #10
                    I bought mine sight unseen. I think I put a lot more effort into researching the seller than she put into researching me. But it worked out just fine.
                    I have a Fjord! Life With Oden


                    • #11
                      I also bought a horse sight unseen off the internet. Worked out great. I met them when I picked up the horse halfway between their state and mine. I figure it's always a leap of faith, no matter how you do it.


                      • #12
                        When selling unseen, I insist on a basic vet check at minimum AND video the whole check in case the buyer wanted to dispute.


                        • #13
                          We've sold several sight unseen. All of turned out really well. Money is either wired into the account or overnight payment with a bank check. Good luck
                          Epona Farm
                          Irish Draughts and Irish Draught Sport horses

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