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Have you bought a horse from your coach? How did that go?

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  • #21
    Awesome - so blessed to have this horse


    • #22
      Been there, done that. I don't know if I'd do it again. I cannot recommend strongly enough that you look at contracts ahead of time before you sign and make sure you are not getting ripped off in any part of the deal. Also, on an in-barn sale, charging full commission on both sides as the broker is not ethical. Do not let anyone else tell you otherwise.

      That said, the horse was brilliant. Wonderful horse. Shame everything else on paper around that horse's sale was such a ghastly event.

      ETA incidentally, that was the event that made me never do business with that trainer again. There was another trainer at the barn I don't mind, but otherwise I just stay away if I can. Unfortunate because the other trainer is actually a decent person and rider.


      • #23
        I bought my OTTB stallion thru my trainer. I leased him for the summer then bought him in the fall. I didnt vet him, I trust my trainer with my life! He is awesome!! I had my boy from 5 to 21yrs passed away to soon for me, things havent been the same.
        Willing to Please - Hero 5/10/87-7/14/09 My Life will never be the same
        Right horse at the right time **Nel**
        My Diamond Girl


        • #24
          I've bought two from my longtime trainer, and both times it's been a great experience. Twice now she's given me an awesome deal on an awesome horse that I might not otherwise have been able to afford simply because she wanted the horse to land in a "forever home" situation and knew that we'd mesh well and that we'd continue to train with her. Both times I've known the horse well long before the idea of a sale formed, which means that I've had a good idea of the horse's good and bad (e.g., required maintenance, possible soundness issues) points and have had many opportunities to ride the horse in question. If you have a trainer you can trust and respect, it's a great situation. If you don't, well, caveat emptor.


          • #25
            I bought my first horse from my BO, I guess brokered by one of my trainers. And I definitely got screwed over! The horse is a grade QH probably, sold as "about 10". In actuality, he was more like 15 and had Navicular. He's now my pasture puff for life. I don't regret it one bit, but, yes, I got screwed on that deal.

            I think it is important to observe how other sales are done. In this case, there were many red flags and I didn't trust the BO.

            I have since left there and would have no issue at all buying from my current trainer. In fact, I just witnessed a sale where she low-balled herself to move a horse quickly, and was very upfront with the buyer.

            When we shopped for my mare, she repeatedly turned down offers of cash from various sellers and let them know all financial arrangements would go through me.

            I also know she doesn't drug or overwork her horses. Her most in demand lesson horses generally get one lesson a day, usually 30 minutes.

            I think the key is knowing whether your trainer has truly earned your trust. Just being your trainer is not enough!
            Born under a rock and owned by beasts!


            • #26
              Here's a horror story for you...

              Trainer had a horse, obtained from the track. Horse was PERFECT. Clean legged, a great ride for me, a green horse that needed work and miles, went on trail, the whole thing! After selling my pony and leasing a few horses here and there from others while moving to horses, I decide to take the plunge and buy the horse. Trainer advised that PPE was a waste of money- that the horse was not enough of an investment to put more money into a PPE, trusting the trainer, we obliged.
              The first few months were perfect, got him to jump small cross-rails, walk-trot-canter, trail ride. It was lovely. Then came September.....

              My perfect Thoroughbred began to go batsh!t. Bucking, bucking, bucking. This boy could BRONC buck. Little me could not stay on for anything... neither could said trainer, their trainer, another trainer, and so on and so on...

              Low and behold my perfect mount was drugged from day one, and continued to be drugged (without my knowledge). My perfect mount was specifically told to be sold to a VERY experienced rider. My perfect mount would buck off jockeys and run to the finish line bucking. My perfect mount was nicknamed "Bucking Ba$tard" at the track. My perfect mount was specifically told not to be sold to a kid..... I was 14.

              *After he went crazy, trainer advised us to sell him at auction or to the rodeo......... lady are you kidding me?

              .... 8 years later, through many tears, falls, and heartbreak, bruised body and bruised ego, I still own him. He turned out to be better when we (both of us) got older and when I learned to ride him his way. I love this boy with all my heart, and he is with me until he dies.... but it ruined trust that I had, all for a bit of cash.


              • #27
                I am surprised how many people don't do PPEs. Even if the horses have been in barn awhile or they have leased/ridden. Your trainer could be telling you 100% the whole truth as they know it, but there could always be something they can't see or aren't aware of that your vet may find. I think it could save situations of "who's to blame" if something were to go wrong afterwards.
                "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"


                • #28
                  Hmmm... well, I bought a horse from my trainer, or rather my parents did, when I was 16. Then the trainer moved away and I got a new trainer. Is it a bad sign when the new trainer says, you paid HOW MUCH for that horse?

                  Right. So, horse was permanently unsound by the time I was in college (he was 9). I'm not sure if she had any idea that he was going to have problems, but I've run into her recently and she asked if I still had him. Yeah, he's just turned 20, I'm almost 31, I still have him. Want to come visit? Sure, bring your checkbook and a trailer. No just kidding, he's a very nice pet, and my SO loves him dearly.


                  • #29
                    I'm blessed with my trainer, who I've been with for 20+ years now. I have not bought a horse directly from her, but have bought three on her recommendation from within our barn. Two of them developed physical issues over time, but that can happen with any horse and she certainly acted in good faith and in my best interests. In fact, I've never seen her recommend a horse she did not sincerely believe was right for the particular person, and I've seen her recommend against many.

                    I always get a PPE, except for the one guy I bought from the BO through "auction" on exercise of a stableman's lien. He's the one that was perfect, hardly lame a day in his life, and is still going at 25.
                    "I don't want to sound like a broken record here, but why is it that a woman will forgive homicidal behavior in a horse, yet be highly critical of a man for leaving the toilet seat up?" Dave Barry


                    • #30
                      Yes, three. The first was before she was actually my coach. I was 14 and looking for a mount that could take me to Young Riders (in eventing). We vetted him and she was very honest about his abilities and limitations. He did get me to the level I wanted by the time I was 16 - at which point I was her working student.

                      The second was a sales horse that I got for a very reasonable price, as she thought it would be a good project for me. I had a basic PPE done, but the horse had already been in work in her program so I knew what I was getting.

                      The third we bought as a joint project, and I have since purchased her interest. This time no need for a PPE as I already owned half

                      You never know what kind of obsessive compulsive crazy person you are until another person imitates your behaviour at a three-day. --Gry2Yng


                      • #31
                        Originally posted by Giddy-up View Post
                        I am surprised how many people don't do PPEs. Even if the horses have been in barn awhile or they have leased/ridden. Your trainer could be telling you 100% the whole truth as they know it, but there could always be something they can't see or aren't aware of that your vet may find. I think it could save situations of "who's to blame" if something were to go wrong afterwards.
                        That will only happen if the buyer isn't woman enough to take the "blame" of not doing a PPE (provided there isn't any outright shadiness like drugging etc going on).

                        I chose not to do a PPE on the 16 yr old lesson horse I rode for a year, and bought. She belonged to the BO and I knew some of her history from casual chats over that year, she was never lame while I rode her, and if I ended up blaming anyone for any previously-undetected badness lurking in her at that time, I would've fully deserved to be slapped upside the head.
                        With a 2-by-4.
                        Proud Member Of The Lady Mafia


                        • #32
                          Originally posted by Coanteen View Post
                          That will only happen if the buyer isn't woman enough to take the "blame" of not doing a PPE (provided there isn't any outright shadiness like drugging etc going on).

                          I chose not to do a PPE on the 16 yr old lesson horse I rode for a year, and bought. She belonged to the BO and I knew some of her history from casual chats over that year, she was never lame while I rode her, and if I ended up blaming anyone for any previously-undetected badness lurking in her at that time, I would've fully deserved to be slapped upside the head.
                          With a 2-by-4.
                          I like this attitude. I have a similar one. My main competition horse was bought without a PPE...I got to ride him for two weeks straight and decided that I didn't care what the PPE showed. He did have some minor issues with his hooves, but I doubt the PPE would have revealed them anyway. Fixed with shoeing.

                          If you do see a horse (especially a mature one who is doing the job you want it for) "going" for several months or years, I can see forgoing a PPE, especially if you and the current owner have the kind of relationship where you were pretty aware of any ongoing concerns...you know the horse has a weird front hoof or something, and know that he needs consistent trimming to stay sound. You also know, from being in the barn every day, that he IS sound.

                          A PPE on a horse you don't know sometimes kills a sale on an issue that the seller wasn't even aware of. It might NEVER cause a problem. It's a risk-balance question. Seeing a horse on a daily basis for an extended period of time takes a lot of risk out, IMO. I might forgo a PPE too...or treat the PPE as more a set of baseline tests to continue monitoring the horse. I'd be less likely to kill the sale even if there were findings, because I knew the horse was sound, in the job I wanted him for.

                          I do know one person who bought a very high dollar horse through a trainer and felt some remorse after the fact...she felt she'd been taken advantage of. I offered a new perspective, and she felt a lot better...and is very happy with the purchase today. "Did you pay the dollar amount that YOU feel the horse is worth? Right now?" If the answer is yes, then there's really no issue. Sure the Trainer "took advantage." Took advantage of a rider who did very well with this horse, and who happened to have a very nice older show horse that she was interested in selling. Trainer's daughter was a great match for the older horse. Buyer would have had trouble selling the older show horse, single-sellers don't get top-dollar in this area...you have to pay to have the horse in with a top trainer, and it can take months. I felt that trainer had underpaid slightly for the older horse, and possibly overcharged a little for the new prospect...BUT as the buyer and I discussed it, we felt that the trainer DID deserve to "profit" a little, as she had found the new prospect, and buyer was given the opportunity to ride the horse for several months. That's security, time required to determine how good a fit the horse is. Buyer also had confidence in Trainer's daughter as a new home for her older horse.

                          Taking advantage of a situation doesn't necessarily mean that anyone has to be hurt. There were advantages on all sides of that purchase. The Trainer was kind of a poor communicator, and I believe that the same transaction could have happened without ANY suspicion, if the buyer had asked a few more questions, done some more price research independently and if the Trainer could have answered questions without getting defensive...unfortunately this Trainer is kind of notorious for being tough to deal with.

                          The one thing that really helped to curb any hurt feelings in the buyer was learning who the horse's sire was. I knew, and so did Trainer...but she doesn't follow breeding much, nor the Hunters in the US. She didn't realize exactly how famous this horse's sire is and how much difference in price "his" youngsters command as prospects. Neither did the buyer...until I told her. She felt a little like SHE'D gotten her "advantage" once she looked into it. This trainer, truly, she's very good, and it is more a point to her that she assesses the horse under her, not so much the pedigree...she doesn't deal in babies. But still. She REALLY could have capitalized a bit more on the "Popeye K" part of this horse's lineage...LOL.
                          Lifestyle coordinator for Zora, Spooky, Wolfgang and Warrior


                          • #33
                            Originally posted by Coanteen View Post
                            That will only happen if the buyer isn't woman enough to take the "blame" of not doing a PPE (provided there isn't any outright shadiness like drugging etc going on).
                            Agreed completely. But how many people take ultimate final responsibility for their purchase decision? From all the finger pointing I see/hear when a sale goes bad, not many.
                            "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"


                            • #34
                              Originally posted by CHT View Post
                              Curious if anyone has bought a horse from their coach, or from someone at their barn through their coach. Wondering how that went to ensure transparency and making sure everyone's interests were met.

                              For example, if you bought from your coach...someone you would normally turn to to help decide valuation of a purchase, how did you come up with an agreed price? Same with vet check...if you would normally go with your coach's advice as to how hard to vet check a horse, what do you do for advice if it is the coach's horse?

                              Any good stories? Any horror stories?

                              Is this something you think is good (as you would likely know the horse) or something to avoid (too hard to be sure of everyone's objectivity)?
                              Ididn't actually 'buy' my hrse from my trainer, but she did bring in an outside broker In CA.
                              They out the deal together; they gave me a price.
                              Being in finance; I asked if we should try to negotiate with seller.
                              Both ( in unison) vehemently disagreed, and told me I was 'lucky to be getting such a GREAT deal.
                              Bought the horse, paid asking price.
                              Ran into original seller two years later at a show 500 miles from our home, asked how much she had sold horse for.
                              Turned out, trainer and her 'connection' in Canada charged me 40% COMMISSION.
                              -They just thought I'd never find out
                              My advice? make check out directly to seller!


                              • #35
                                I bought a horse from a training client my trainer had. It was a very good experience! The owner was very picky where the horse ended up and gave me special pricing on the recomendation of my trainer. My trainer cut her commison out so I could afford the horse but did not allow me to make a low ball offer on the horse either. My trainer also encouraged a vet check even though the horse had been in training with her for 8 months. To be honest, we both felt the owner had him a bit overpriced but we are such a fit and I have known him three years and ridden him for 8 months that it was worth it! Would 100% do it again!


                                • #36
                                  As a trainer I have sold horses to clients. Most where foals. I did sell one gelding to a family that had two girls that road with me. The deal was that if he didn't work out I would buy back at the price they paid. A year later they didn't feel he was the right horse. I had a new client that had just been with me for a few months. I told older clients that I thought that gelding might work for new client. Would they be open to a one month trial at my farm. New client rode gelding for two weeks and said that he was happy with gelding and wanted to buy gelding. I had new client do a full PPE on gelding as he had not lived with me for the last year. New client paid Old client there asking price. Now if New client had not bought gelding then I would have bought him back. I didn't make any money on the sale.

                                  Now with that said I did make lots of clients from horses I sold. Person would buy a horse from me and then 6 months to a year later would start riding with me.
                                  Last edited by Eleanor; Jun. 18, 2013, 09:58 PM. Reason: more info
                                  My life motto now is "You can't fix stupid!"

                                  Are you going to cowboy up, or lie there and bleed


                                  • #37
                                    Yes, twice with two different trainers, at two very different price points with very different outcomes and both times I did PPEs.

                                    First time it was a disaster. Horse and I never really "clicked" despite assurances from trainer that we would. Horse had health issues that were disclosed but minimized and really had an effect on being able to ride the horse. (Severe hives) I was a novice horse owner at the time. He was also very expensive.

                                    Second time it was the best decision ever.
                                    At a new barn where I had eventually moved to with the first horse for a myriad of reasons, including my inability to ride that horse properly. (While I never clicked with him the second trainer did teach me to ride him well. It was never fun. He didn't have a work ethic at all.)
                                    There was a horse with an absentee owner. Horse was "just my type" cranky on the ground but very game/honest if you were a forward thinking rider.
                                    I hacked him out and jumped fences just once and knew that we were a perfect match.
                                    I lobbied for a year to buy him.
                                    He cost me next to nothing in the end.
                                    He was a saint under saddle and I loved every minute I spent in the tack.
                                    I'm still sad that he is retired.

                                    I agree with the posters that say if the horse is "known" to you that it can be wonderful way to find a partner.