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What is Enough When Trying Horse

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  • What is Enough When Trying Horse

    There was a recent thread about protocol for the buyer trying a prospective purchase.
    But my question is from the sellers stand point.
    When do you pull the plug on a trial ride?
    When someone comes back for a 2nd ride day and expresses serious interest in more than 1 horse how do you delicately ask if they are serious and have the $$$ for purchase?
    I had a group show up to try horses. They all had to sit on each horse, narrowed it down to 2. Made it clear to me they were serious about buying both. Two diffrent buyers so not one person buying 2.
    Came back then for another ride days later on just the final 2.
    Again they all rode the horses, multiple swaps and much "schooling" going on. More than a trial ride. Just when my patience and tolerance was at an end they stopped.
    When it was all over and lots of photos and videos later I produced a sales agreement for both horses.
    Thats when I was informed that Buyer #2 had no funds for #2 horse only buyer #1 for #1 and they well knew this before they came back and had no intentions of purchasing just wanted to see him go again. Only #1 horse was going to be bought.
    Do you just scream in your head while you smile. The prices were very clear, and unless they/you are going to buy why would you think its OK to just ride ride ride someone elses horse.
    They had a trainer w/ them, they certainly were not backyard pleasure weekenders.
    What do you ask of prospective buyer beyond the obvious? Riding experiance, intended use of horse?

  • #2
    It may have been buyer one was intrested in both horses and wanted to see how they both acted and didn't have time to come and try to trail ride both 2 times and school them so they brought a friend. It sounds like they may have tricked you because they thought you may not let them take both out if you knew only one person was intrested in actually buying. If they switched horses and buyer one rode both horses then that is what it sounds like to me but I could be wrong. If only buyer one was going to buy a horse but needed to trail ride it would you let someone else ride another horse or let her go out by themselves or would you say sorry you have no other horse available to go out? They also probably didn't want you offering to go on the trail ride with them because only one buyer was going to buy. Most people like to try out a horse on the trail without the seller to see how the horse reacts with completly new people.
    Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

    Comment


    • #3
      Ummm... how do I put this delicately????

      I think the OP was talking about a TRIAL... like trying out a horse... not a TRAIL like a bridal path.

      Comment


      • #4
        I do ask previous riding experience, and expected job of the horse in question; I also ask if they are familiar with the asking price.

        I offer to ride the horse for them, or if their trainer, or rider are there, they may ride the horse, and then the prospective buyer(s). Aside from that I feel it is inappropriate for anyone else to ride. I also don't feel it is approriate for a "buyer" to school my horse. If the other trainer needs to train on it, then it most likely is not a fit.

        Keeping mind, that jumping a line and halting is not neccessarily "schooling", but a fair test, and two repitions of that is appropriate.

        I feel that 15 min flat work and 8 to 12 fences per rider are adequate to try a horse. If they really like the horse, we need to talk about the next step. In this time you can decide 1. if you like the way feels, 2. if it has enough step, 3. try the lead change, 4. see if it scares the client. When I have tried horses, there have been a couple I was done with after 5 minutes!!

        I always hate situations like this, they're time consuming and rude. I am so sorry you had this experience; and the trainer should no better and show some professionalism.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by unclewiggly View Post
          There was a recent thread about protocol for the buyer trying a prospective purchase.
          But my question is from the sellers stand point.
          When do you pull the plug on a trial ride?
          When someone comes back for a 2nd ride day and expresses serious interest in more than 1 horse how do you delicately ask if they are serious and have the $$$ for purchase?
          I had a group show up to try horses. They all had to sit on each horse, narrowed it down to 2. Made it clear to me they were serious about buying both. Two diffrent buyers so not one person buying 2.
          Came back then for another ride days later on just the final 2.
          Again they all rode the horses, multiple swaps and much "schooling" going on. More than a trial ride. Just when my patience and tolerance was at an end they stopped.
          When it was all over and lots of photos and videos later I produced a sales agreement for both horses.
          Thats when I was informed that Buyer #2 had no funds for #2 horse only buyer #1 for #1 and they well knew this before they came back and had no intentions of purchasing just wanted to see him go again. Only #1 horse was going to be bought.
          Do you just scream in your head while you smile. The prices were very clear, and unless they/you are going to buy why would you think its OK to just ride ride ride someone elses horse.
          They had a trainer w/ them, they certainly were not backyard pleasure weekenders.
          What do you ask of prospective buyer beyond the obvious? Riding experiance, intended use of horse?
          Well, you did end up selling one horse (right?) so it wasn't a complete waste of time. No I don't think it makes it right for them to ride the horse knowing they didn't have the money, but what can you do?? Short of doing a credit check and calling the bank to see how much money they have ( ) there's no way to verify that up front.

          The only time I have intervened during a trial ride is when it's painfully obvious they are not getting along, or I feel like the horse is not being ridden fairly. Otherwise, I've had people ride for what i thought was a long time (1 hr), but I don't shoo them off if they are getting along with the horse. The one who rode my horse the longest is the one that ended up buying it. I know usually within 20 minutes if the horse will work for me or not, but some folks really like to stew on it.
          Originally posted by barka.lounger
          u get big old crop and bust that nags ass the next time it even slow down.

          we see u in gp ring in no time.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Tini Sea Soldier View Post
            Ummm... how do I put this delicately????

            I think the OP was talking about a TRIAL... like trying out a horse... not a TRAIL like a bridal path.
            he-he, and I think you actually meant a BRIDLE path, rather then the BRIDAL path; isn't that the lane that leads to I DO!!

            Comment


            • #7
              My bad I read it wrong. Sorry, well then they did you wrong OP.
              Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by mrsbradbury View Post
                he-he, and I think you actually meant a BRIDLE path, rather then the BRIDAL path; isn't that the lane that leads to I DO!!
                At this stage of the game... I'd take a walk down either, if given the opportunity! But you're 100% right!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Is it possible, in the OP's case, that they were unsure if they were more interested in horse #1 or #2? Perhaps they wanted to see the other person on it to see how it went for a similar rider? I know that several folks around here can push a horse around and make them look amazing, but I may not be able to do that with every horse I get on.
                  A proud friend of bar.ka.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Tini Sea Soldier View Post
                    At this stage of the game... I'd take a walk down either, if given the opportunity! But you're 100% right!
                    They're both nice!!

                    But, back to OP: I don't feel that you should have to feel "put upon" because someone is there to try your horse. If it's going well, and real quality time is spent with the animal and you see a bond growing, that's one thing.

                    The way you described the scenario was as if trainer in question used your barn as a catch riding clinic. It was just simply in poor taste in my opinion.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Take names next time a "group" shows up to try some horses. It is your right as the seller to make sure that the people getting on the horse are at the appropriate riding level for the horse. If the buyers' trainer can't provide you with names and price ranges and the type of horse each rider is looking for, they are wasting your time.
                      Man plans. God laughs.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Where was the trainer in all this? If you sold a horse and think it has a good home, great. If the whole thing left a bad taste in your mouth, the best thing to do might be just to file that information for later.

                        If the trainer returns, you might tactfully explain to her what didn't work for you last time. Have her bring clients looking for specific horses, not a "mix'n'match" situation and also those who are really looking. You might be able to make it a "win" for both pros-- neither of your time gets wasted. It may be that the trainer wasn't happy with her clients either, but felt she couldn't say so.
                        The armchair saddler
                        Politically Pro-Cat

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          Yes I should have gotten it all clear who was with whom intially @ the introduction faze. My bad....
                          Next time if a "group" shows up will be clear about who is going to be buying and riding. Trainer , Jr, parent works but if its every friend in the mini van, No Way.
                          Trainer it seems was looking for a green prospect and brought along a potential investor as well as a legitamete client w/ $$ to buy on a more made horse.Then their was the ubiquitous friends who have no $$ no horse.
                          All w/ paddock boots 1/2 chaps, GPA helmets in monogramed bags and lots of opinions/advice.
                          All in desperate need of a ride it appears.
                          Yes one horse is being purchased by the "real" customer.
                          Investor didn't have enough $$ and trainer had none and couldn't get anyone to promote the cash by the second day. But failed to divulge that until after several hours. Fortunately they didn't exhaust the horse, just bursts of riding then sitting on and analyzing.
                          I have found the longer they ride the less likely they are to buy.
                          Last weeks customer was less than 20 minutes from tack on to tack off, horse vetted and sold in 3 days.
                          I think 30 minutes is more than fair, plus if all is going well I always offer up a short hack out around well w/in site of barn ring and parents/trainer just as a cool off get to know walk. NO Trail Rides Down the Bridal Path

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            when I try horses i Take a beginning ride on for like 20 minutes or so. And if I really like it we bring it on Trial and keep it for a few days.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              So the investment horse really should have been ridden by the pro only, right?

                              Too bad he/she couldn't get her investors lined up before the visit. I do understand the temptation to try a horse above the investors' limit and hope that these many people might collectively come up with a little more. It just hurts this trainer's relationship with you (potentially a good contact for more horses) that she couldn't just say "sorry, they can't do it" sooner. If the trainer is young or just starting out, chalk it up to that.

                              Sorry this happened to you. I'm also glad one sold and the other didn't get too worn out. This thread is helpful, however. It lets all of us reading what is and is not appropriate.
                              The armchair saddler
                              Politically Pro-Cat

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                This is why...

                                a lot of barns only do business with people they know. There are some scenarios where "group shopping" works to the advantage of the seller, but I think it's pretty rare and only works where there are well established relationships. I used to ride at a barn that had a couple of favorite places to shop that were a long drive. When there were enough people looking, we'd load up in a couple of cars and bring the rig, and go to the farm. To speed things along, instead of watching the farm's rider ride the horses, I would hop on all of them, and the trainer would match up horses with potential riders. It was a day long activity, but we usually brought home a trailer load from our mix and match shopping.

                                They were long, fun days, and the farm owner just kept bringing them out. A lot of times in situations like that, people get in a buying frenzy, and much more gets sold than would otherwise. Being the test rider was never a great situation for me, because I would often end up bringing something home too.
                                Trinity Farm LLC
                                Quality hunters and jumpers at Midwest prices
                                Like us on Facebook:
                                https://www.facebook.com/TrinityFarmLLC

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Considering this economy and how many nice horses are for sale right now-I would have been thankful for their interest and business.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I tend to agree with Addison.

                                    In addition I think it helps a sale horse to get ridden by a variety of riders (not yeehaws) and you never know who in the group will talk at a tack store, horse show, etc. about the nice horse they rode at your place and how convenient you made it for them to try the horses.

                                    Maybe they wanted to observe the original horse being ridden in company?

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I would probably be hesitant to let this trainer come try mine after this without asking a few questions. She was not really upfront about what she was looking for and her buyers budget-or lack thereof. Frankly, if she called again, I'd let her know I was unhappy with her for failing to mention there was no way one of those was a bona fide buyer and wasting my time. Very unprofessional. Not going to make her welcome at a whole lot of sales and training barns either.

                                      But, as seller, you have every right to say "no more riders". That's not fair to the horse, carting multiple buyers around in the same session. It's still your horse, look out for it.

                                      Unless something major crops up, like a stop or a problem with something simple, like a lead change, do NOT allow any serious "schooling" by the buyer's trainer. It's a sales trial, you are not providing a free lesson horse. Up to you to let them know that is not acceptable.

                                      Fine line between letting a buyer and their trainer get a good idea of the horse's abilities and suitablility and getting taken advantage of while the horse gets pounded.

                                      But you have to just say no when you think it's gone far enough...and whoever said the longer they ride, the less chance they'll buy? Dead on. Serious buyers with knowledgeable trainers know within 15 minutes if it will suit or not. Keep that thought and don't be afraid to pull the plug.

                                      Saying "I think Red has had enough for today" after about 20 minutes is pretty reasonable. They can come back for a second ride if he is a candidate. They can look a little harder the second time but not for more then 30 minutes and not two riders.
                                      When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                      The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by findeight View Post
                                        I would probably be hesitant to let this trainer come try mine after this without asking a few questions. She was not really upfront about what she was looking for and her buyers budget-or lack thereof. Frankly, if she called again, I'd let her know I was unhappy with her for failing to mention there was no way one of those was a bona fide buyer and wasting my time. Very unprofessional. Not going to make her welcome at a whole lot of sales and training barns either.

                                        But, as seller, you have every right to say "no more riders". That's not fair to the horse, carting multiple buyers around in the same session. It's still your horse, look out for it.

                                        Unless something major crops up, like a stop or a problem with something simple, like a lead change, do NOT allow any serious "schooling" by the buyer's trainer. It's a sales trial, you are not providing a free lesson horse. Up to you to let them know that is not acceptable.

                                        Fine line between letting a buyer and their trainer get a good idea of the horse's abilities and suitablility and getting taken advantage of while the horse gets pounded.

                                        But you have to just say no when you think it's gone far enough...and whoever said the longer they ride, the less chance they'll buy? Dead on. Serious buyers with knowledgeable trainers know within 15 minutes if it will suit or not. Keep that thought and don't be afraid to pull the plug.

                                        Saying "I think Red has had enough for today" after about 20 minutes is pretty reasonable. They can come back for a second ride if he is a candidate. They can look a little harder the second time but not for more then 30 minutes and not two riders.
                                        Completely agree with findeight here. Your horse, your responsibility, you need to do your best to weed out the tire kickers. I understand it happens but now you know. Unfortunately trials like this and off site trials are a good way to end up with less horse then you had to begin with.

                                        I personally am very skeptical when a buyer wants to try the horse themselves right off the bat. Years of witnessing the process and buying horses myself has taught me that the best way to evaluate a horse is with the normal rider in the saddle. If the horse issues I can then determine whether they are rider related or horse related. If it is for a client we evaluate first, and then determine if the fit is right after, and that does not entail marathon rides, a little hack maybe a few small fences. I am surprised the trainer did do such an evaluation first. It is not a good idea to plop a client on a unknown horse and run the risk of ending up with a busted rider!!

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