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Buying a horse protocol..Trainer/no trainer

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  • Buying a horse protocol..Trainer/no trainer

    Is there some kind of secret protocol when looking for a horse, that the trainer at the barn you board at must be invovled? I kinda thought when you were looking, you had the freedom to do what you wanted. If you want the trainers opionion, then you would ask and pay for it. Just because you board a horse somewhere, under the auspices of a trainer, does not mean you are obliged to use that person to purchase another horse. If you start talking big bucks, then maybe have an experienced agent? Just mulling over a situation, where someone is looking for a horse, trainer is trying to get owner to buy something really not suitable, and telling buyer that to go looking at horses on their own is just wrong. Makes trainer look bad, makes barn look bad, and wastes everyones time. Person is serious, but needs a specific kind of horse, and wants a specific colour. I think if it looks suitable, rides well, is liked, then get trainer involved. No point in having trainer come look at duds.

  • #2
    Originally posted by aloysha View Post
    Is there some kind of secret protocol when looking for a horse, that the trainer at the barn you board at must be invovled? I kinda thought when you were looking, you had the freedom to do what you wanted. If you want the trainers opionion, then you would ask and pay for it. Just because you board a horse somewhere, under the auspices of a trainer, does not mean you are obliged to use that person to purchase another horse. If you start talking big bucks, then maybe have an experienced agent? Just mulling over a situation, where someone is looking for a horse, trainer is trying to get owner to buy something really not suitable, and telling buyer that to go looking at horses on their own is just wrong. Makes trainer look bad, makes barn look bad, and wastes everyones time. Person is serious, but needs a specific kind of horse, and wants a specific colour. I think if it looks suitable, rides well, is liked, then get trainer involved. No point in having trainer come look at duds.
    Standard Protocol is as follows:

    You have no freedom.

    Trainer is always involved either officially or unofficially by cornering the seller behind your back for a commission. If your line up a horse for viewing and trainer isn't involved and can't unofficially be involved, the horse "won't be suitable".

    If you don't involve the trainer and bring the horse to the barn without their involvement trainer will be offended and your relationship will be strained. There is a good chance the horse "isn't a good fit" "doesn't work out", in which case trainer sells the wrong horse and then helps you buy another horse.
    www.vandenbrink.ca

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    • #3
      I'm a little confused. Is the trainer the actual trainer of said person or just the resident trainer at the barn?

      Usually if you have a regular trainer, I would say bring them along horse shopping. If you trust them to be knowledgeable enough to teach you how to ride, you ought to consider their two cents on the suitability of potential horses.
      If you do not have a regular trainer, that is a different story. However, I personally would never horse shop on my own without at least an educated horse friend to bounce ideas off of.
      If this "trainer" is giving unsolicited advice, then it sounds like the "person" needs to sit down and have a frank conversation with said "trainer".

      Comment


      • #4
        It's their money so they do have the freedom to do what they want.... but saying that it really depends.

        1) If you are in a good program with a good trainer; I would have the trainer help and pay commission for time spent on horse shopping. It is their job, not too many people want to work for free and it is a bonus if the trainer likes the horse and most trainers have been in the business long enough to know best.

        2) If you are in a bad program with a gankee trainer trying to over face you or get a friends bum horse sold off to you - then you probably shouldn't be in that program to begin with.

        3) If you are mostly DIY and pretty good at it then solo horse shopping finding something you like is okay. Maybe show the prospect to the trainer you frequent in a video so you know it's something they approve of.

        I have interestingly been in most of these situations. One of the funniest and probably the most accurate buying advice for this older ammy rider has been - - BROWN GELDING!!!
        If you like the distance you see; continue forward. If you don't; stay still and the shorter distance works out. ~GM~

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        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by vandenbrink View Post
          Standard Protocol is as follows:

          You have no freedom.


          Trainer is always involved either officially or unofficially by cornering the seller behind your back for a commission. If your line up a horse for viewing and trainer isn't involved and can't unofficially be involved, the horse "won't be suitable".

          If you don't involve the trainer and bring the horse to the barn without their involvement trainer will be offended and your relationship will be strained. There is a good chance the horse "isn't a good fit" "doesn't work out", in which case trainer sells the wrong horse and then helps you buy another horse.
          Wow, this is pretty much exactly the situation that is being pushed. Every horse that is found by potential owner is deemed unsuitable/lame/etc...just by video by trainer. I'm just a lowly onlooker, and trying to help this person, as a friend with some experience, and just find this whole experience wrong. Person is very inexperienced, and not sure who to trust anymore. Was given a lecture about trainers calling trainers, etc...not calling up yourself when you see an add about a horse you might like, that's just not done...etc

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          • #6
            Originally posted by aloysha View Post
            Wow, this is pretty much exactly the situation that is being pushed. Every horse that is found by potential owner is deemed unsuitable/lame/etc...just by video by trainer. I'm just a lowly onlooker, and trying to help this person, as a friend with some experience, and just find this whole experience wrong. Person is very inexperienced, and not sure who to trust anymore. Was given a lecture about trainers calling trainers, etc...not calling up yourself when you see an add about a horse you might like, that's just not done...etc
            That is NOT the norm!!!! I would not be at any barn that rolled like that..... Sorry there isn't much you can do for your friend. It looks like friend will have to sink or swim here.
            If you like the distance you see; continue forward. If you don't; stay still and the shorter distance works out. ~GM~

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            • #7
              If they provide you training and lessons, They should be involved unless you have a specific conversation to the contrary. They are on the hook for teaching you on this animal, so you can't expect them to be enthused if you show up with something unsuitable. If you don't respect their opinion, why are you there? If it's money, go have the conversation about what help you can afford and go from there.

              If you are simply boarding at the facility, you have no obligation unless you have some sort of strange boarding contract.

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              • #8
                IMO, yes the trainer has a right to be involved and get a commission (assuming this is a trainer run barn, not a barn with a variety of people that happens to include a trainer)

                Any horse you bring in the barn is a representation of the trainer. If you buy a POS, it makes the trainer and her program look bad. People won't say 'look at Ammy A, can you believe what a POS she owns?". They say "Look at trainer A, no way I'd board/train/ride with a trainer if POS's like that horse come out of her barn!" Even if the horse isn't a POS and is just inappropriate, it still reflects poorly on the trainer, her training, and the horses she finds for her clients.

                This is usually part of boarding at a show/hunter/trainer run barn. If you don't like it, don't board at one of those barns.
                .

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by jr View Post
                  If they provide you training and lessons, They should be involved unless you have a specific conversation to the contrary. They are on the hook for teaching you on this animal, so you can't expect them to be enthused if you show up with something unsuitable. If you don't respect their opinion, why are you there? If it's money, go have the conversation about what help you can afford and go from there.

                  If you are simply boarding at the facility, you have no obligation unless you have some sort of strange boarding contract.
                  I agree with this but IMHO it sounds like the OPs friend is not at a good place. I would tell her to shop around for barns she likes. Most good trainers will work with their clients in a positive way to find the best suited mount for them.
                  If you like the distance you see; continue forward. If you don't; stay still and the shorter distance works out. ~GM~

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    This is fairly discipline specific, it seems. Lots of amateurs in the eventing world go try horses on their own. When I shop I send video if available to my dressage coach. If she doesn't say ick (and she doesn't charge me for the 5 minutes it takes her to look at the video - we've been together a long time), I'll go ride the horse. If I like the horse, THEN I will show jump trainer video or in some cases have trainer see or sit on horse. I pay for their time. That way they have no financial incentive one way or the other about any specific horse.
                    This is not that unusual in the eventing world.

                    Mainly I think the buyer needs to have a very clear understanding up front, independent of any specific horse, of what financial and time arrangements are. And it would be in the buyer's best interest to uncouple compensation from how much any given horse cost or who it was sold by.

                    I know that's not how the hunter world works, but it thought it would be helpful to the OP to know that this is only one little corner of the horse world.

                    Your money, your purchase. Be in control.
                    The big man -- my lost prince

                    The little brother, now my main man

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                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Thsi is a very odd situation, where trainer is not helping to find horses, except for this one very unsuitable horse, which belomgs to another client. But still feels the need to be included in every aspect, even though will not go to trial horses, will not help find horses, the whole situation is just odd. Trainer was upset because buyer called another barn with horses for sale nearby, and told buyer that that kind of thing was just not done. Trainer would call, and set things up, just more professional that way. But trainer doesn't do it. Buyer would like a horse sooner rather that later, and can't wait for trainer to get ass in gear!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        To me, it's weird that the trainer isn't helping them out. That is the bigger issue to me. They should be assisting them even if they want to make the first contact, especially for a person who sounds like they don't have a lot of experience. You have to sit on horses to know what you want.

                        I am currently in the vetting process of buying a new horse (praying it works out), and I actually found the horse. My trainer and I were both looking, I sent her videos of sale horses I found, if she liked it she would call the trainer of the horse and see if it sounded like something we would try out. She would look at horses as well, gather videos on her own, and try out horses at shows and see if they would be suitable. We actually made very few trips together to try out horses (and we were looking coast to coast), and found this guy in our backyard through a friend of mine. I have no problem paying my trainer a commission even though she didn't find him, because she has been working her rear end off trying to find other horses, and came with me to try this guy out and is helping out with the vetting and purchasing process. To me, her help has been priceless so far. And that is how it should be! Buying or selling. And even though I have only been riding with her for a year, I have known her for close to 20 years, she just lived too far away to ride with until a year ago!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by asterix View Post
                          This is fairly discipline specific, it seems. Lots of amateurs in the eventing world go try horses on their own. When I shop I send video if available to my dressage coach. If she doesn't say ick (and she doesn't charge me for the 5 minutes it takes her to look at the video - we've been together a long time), I'll go ride the horse. If I like the horse, THEN I will show jump trainer video or in some cases have trainer see or sit on horse. I pay for their time. That way they have no financial incentive one way or the other about any specific horse.
                          This is not that unusual in the eventing world.

                          Mainly I think the buyer needs to have a very clear understanding up front, independent of any specific horse, of what financial and time arrangements are. And it would be in the buyer's best interest to uncouple compensation from how much any given horse cost or who it was sold by.

                          I know that's not how the hunter world works, but it thought it would be helpful to the OP to know that this is only one little corner of the horse world.

                          Your money, your purchase. Be in control.
                          I agree with your comment about your money, your purchase be in control...

                          But I disagree with the Hunter comment. I ride Hunters and very good trainers I know would never operate like that. I know they truly want what is best for their client and of course best for them as a trainer. Both of those things are usually the same.

                          I think the bigger issue here is OPs friend is newer to horses and possibly being bamboozled by this trainer. You can call other barns then take your trainer with you to check out the horse.
                          If you like the distance you see; continue forward. If you don't; stay still and the shorter distance works out. ~GM~

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I paid my trainer hourly rate for assistance in shopping for horses AND I called a few and set them up myself. We both agreed that an hourly rate was fair and then there is none of that commission awkwardness and even dishonesty that is very frequent.

                            But I think your friend is in a bad situation with a trainer that says "that's not how it's done" and then is NOT doing it another way. Maybe trainer thinks your friend is not serious and trainer will waste a lot of time and reputation?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              We are a hunter/jumper show barn. No straight boarder only clients.

                              This is how the scenario often plays out;

                              Client lessons well on saintly lesson horse, jumps around 2'6" course well. Does well at schooling shows.

                              Client wants horse of their own. Fantastic. Has conversation with trainer about cost of this dream horse.

                              Client is appalled at what dream horse will cost. Says they have seen many, many wonderful horses on line for much less money. They will look on their own.

                              Fine.

                              Client brings a string of unsuitable, unsound and unsafe horses to the trainers attention.

                              Client becomes frustrated when each and every 'perfect' horse is turned down. Trainer MUST have dishonest intentions or an alternate agenda.

                              Not true.

                              Trainer WANTS you to have a dream horse. You win. They win. Everyone is happy.

                              Dream horses cost a certain amount of money if you are a beginer and want a discipline specific, competitive and safe horse.

                              The trainer is there to keep you safe and happy and to help you avoid expensive, dangerous mistakes. Please let them help you if you are a beginner.

                              I don't know the details of your friends situation. Maybe the trainer IS trying to take unfair advantage. It happens.

                              But maybe she is doing her level best to help your friend find a safe, suitable first horse.

                              Just maybe.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Unless you are really good at picking out unsoundness/conformation/performance issues, it is always best to have someone with you and if you work with a trainer they would be the best choice. Yes you will pay them for their time but if trainer has anything about them, that choice will be the best one. As a trainer myself I don't mind if my clients do all the leg work and find some prospects and then I go for the try out. I don't want them to get something that does not suit for whatever reason.
                                It is a shame that some -not all!- trainers insist on doing everything and will only pick out a horse that gives them the biggest commission, suitable or not! Trainers do deserve being paid for effort put out but if you are the buyer,be aware.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  This topic comes up over and over again. First of all not everyone! has a trainer or a full time coach. Many people are perfectly comfortable and experienced enough to find suitable horses and try them out themselves. If they wish to bring someone with them for a second opinion of course that's a very good idea but not a necessity. Sometimes its a paid professional coach, sometimes a very good horse person friend. Does not matter. The purchaser makes this call NOT the professional coach or trainers that all seem to want to get involved (and obtain substantial commissions of course). Certainly these pro's deserve to be paid for their time to view a prospective purchase on behalf of their clients but if the clients find the horse themselves no way a full commission should be applied. Having been in the situation a number of times sadly over the years selling young horses of hearing pro state (out of ear shot of clients that contacted me in the first place) price of this horse will be ???????? which will include a 15% commission paid to me by you after completion of sale. Really seriously? And if I disagree with this statement of course all of a sudden my horse is not really suitable for the client anyway. Lost a few sales this way.....but you need to do what is right and honourable. Doing this back handed double dipping is just not cool in my books! I agree with the above poster. Buyers beware and be very clear in your expectations with your trainers about any possible hidden commissions or fees. Oh, and any Bill of Sale is made out directly to the purchaser who pays me directly. Not the trainer or any middle person. That way the actual purchase price of the horse is clear and transparent to everyone, including the tax man

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by aloysha View Post
                                    Just mulling over a situation, where someone is looking for a horse, trainer is trying to get owner to buy something really not suitable
                                    Originally posted by aloysha View Post
                                    Every horse that is found by potential owner is deemed unsuitable/lame/etc...just by video by trainer.
                                    It sounds like the trainer and the client are not on the same page as to what would be a suitable horse in this situation.

                                    Perhaps the horse the trainer showed the client is, in her opinion suitable. Perhaps the trainer is not calling on horses from the other barn because she feels they are unsuitable. Perhaps the horses the client is showing the trainer really are unsuitable in the trainer's opinion. (It really is not in a clients best interest to match a client with an unsuitable horse.) Or perhaps it is the other way around.

                                    Either way, unless the trainer and the client can agree of the criteria of what constitutes a suitable horse, there are going to be problems and they won't agree on a horse. I think it might be time for a sit down between the client and the trainer to iron that out.
                                    Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                                    Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by aloysha View Post
                                      This is a very odd situation, where trainer is not helping to find horses, except for this one very unsuitable horse, which belomgs to another client.
                                      What do you mean by unsuitable? What kind of horse is this particular horse?

                                      Originally posted by aloysha View Post
                                      Person is serious, but needs a specific kind of horse, and wants a specific colour.
                                      You said your friend is a beginner.
                                      What is her/his "specific kind of horse"?
                                      As for the color... as a beginner, and probably first time owner, she should put that desire at the bottom of her list. It shouldn't even be on the list.
                                      ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

                                      Originally posted by LauraKY
                                      I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
                                      HORSING mobile training app

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                                      • #20
                                        While I agree color should be very low on a list for a beginner, it is her money and if that is what it will take to make her happy... She just needs to realize she is making the search much harder and it will probably take a long long long time unless she gets really lucky.
                                        Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                                        Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.

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