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Selling Yearlings...Is The Market THAT Bad???

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  • Selling Yearlings...Is The Market THAT Bad???

    I have two yearlings I would like to sell ASAP - one horse, one pony. Both are nice Hunter-type babies and are well bred. I would really like to sell them in the next week to 10 days and ***thought*** I had them priced to move. I've gotten a ton of calls and e-mails, but no one has put down any $$$. I have them listed on Dreamhorse.com, Equine.com, and on several Facebook groups. The Oldenburg colt I have on warmbloods-for-sale as well. Is the market really that bad? 5 years ago, I would have sold the horse yearling for 10k (what his full siblings sold for) and the pony would have been a $3,500 pony that would have sold quickly. I don't want to drop their prices any more for fear of people thinking there is something wrong with them. Oliver Brown said he will handle them for me if I still have them when the shows roll around, but I really don't want to keep them until spring! Ugh, what is a breeder to do?

  • #2
    We have had a lot of luck selling weanlings/yearlings. After we sold ours, we opened up our farm to clients and helped market and sell theirs. All selling is less than 3 weeks each. The buyers are there. Make sure your marketing material is up to par. We only posted the ones we sold through our Fb account. Good luck. PM me if you would like any help.
    Worth A Shot Farm
    Finding the horse of your dreams, is always Worth A Shot!
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    • #3
      Well, we just put up a coming yearling filly for sale for a client of us and we'll see what the market is all about for yearlings.. in 2013! Last time I attempted to sell a yearling was back in 2010 and it was a perfectly healthy Holsteiner (AHHA) reg. filly with very decent bloodlines and no confo flaws and I ended up basically selling her for.... a giveaway price. Was heart breaking but she went to a good barn so that made up for. Hate Hate Hate to sell yearlings. Too young to fit in the young horse market, too ugly to fit into the baby foal market haha. Even the nice looking ones are butt high, not pretty balanced and gangly. And ad to that winter up north, and you get the picture why they eiter sell for cheap or do not sell fast like babies are.

      With that said, good luck to you !
      Les Écuries d'Automne, Québec, Canada
      Visit EdA's Facebook page!


      • #4
        Originally posted by Spike View Post
        Hate Hate Hate to sell yearlings. Too young to fit in the young horse market, too ugly to fit into the baby foal market haha. Even the nice looking ones are butt high, not pretty balanced and gangly. And ad to that winter up north, and you get the picture why they eiter sell for cheap or do not sell fast like babies are.

        With that said, good luck to you !
        That's my take too. A yearling is probably the most difficult age to sell a horse. Too young to start training under saddle and oftentimes gangly. A buyer who purchases a yearling as a hunter prospect is looking at feeding and caring for the horse for another two plus years before being able to do anything with it other than show it on the line.


        • #5
          Honestly, it depends on how they are bred. The ones that are selling that I know about were nitch breedings (meaning pedigrees that sell well). How is the pony bred?
          Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver Equine Insurance Specialist


          • #6
            Please keep in mind that getting too specific about things here veers into the advertising side of things. Please feel free to continue to discuss general trends in the market...

            Thanks! Mod 3


            • #7
              Do you have videos of them in the ads so people can see how they move?


              • #8
                I am one of WorthAShot’s clients. I advertised my 2012 colt in the usual areas and received a lukewarm response. Within 3 weeks of him going to Allie’s he was sold to a fantastic home! It is all about the network, the right pictures and the right video. If a potential buyer wanted a particular type of video, she went right out and got it asap. I know as a buyer I’ve asked for video and had it take forever to get! By which time I had often moved on to another horse.

                The buyers are there for sure but proper marketing is essential.


                • #9
                  Just what she said.


                  • #10
                    I feel your pain, OP! My trainer has several very well bred babies and hasn't even had so much as a phone call in the last two months. She is pulling her hair out. Unfortunately, the economy being what it is, there is a lot of uncertainty out there, and I think that potential buyers aren't just seeing the sticker price, but the price of raising said yearling to riding age. It's a pity, but I am seeing nice babies selling for not much more than the stud fee.
                    Last edited by Lulu; Feb. 26, 2013, 03:44 PM.


                    • #11
                      [QUOTE=Anguissette;6860469]I am one of WorthAShot’s clients. I advertised my 2012 colt in the usual areas and received a lukewarm response. Within 3 weeks of him going to Allie’s he was sold to a fantastic home! It is all about the network, the right pictures and the right video. If a potential buyer wanted a particular type of video, she went right out and got it asap. I know as a buyer I’ve asked for video and had it take forever to get! By which time I had often moved on to another horse.

                      I can double this post - Mods I will not post the video Allie of Worth a Shot Farm made of my baby but I can attest that the video she made resulted in the sale of my wonderful colt in a very short time. For anyone interested, on my FB page under Don't Look Back Farm. I learned a valuable lesson as an overworked, techno challenged ( includes video) 60 something with bad eyesight? LOL The making of a really good video? And some pictures that are of a babe all cleaned up? See the below line!!! Thank you Allie

                      The buyers are there for sure but proper marketing is essential!
                      "Her life was okay. Sometimes she wished she were sleeping with the right man instead of with her dog, but she never felt she was sleeping with the wrong dog."



                      • #12
                        Allie, PM'd you!

                        Diane Halpin/Laurel Leaf Hanoverians: Facebook


                        • #13
                          We have found that networking is the absolute key along with pedigree posting everywhere (Facebook especially). Learn to distinguish the tire kickers from the serious potential buyer and be proactive with that prospect. We've been very fortunate that the stallion owners have also referred potential buyers to us as well.

                          I will definitely agree selling a weanlilng/yearling is much, much more difficult than one that has been started. That said, the price is much lower as well!
                          Last edited by eggbutt; Feb. 27, 2013, 03:26 PM. Reason: cause


                          • #14
                            As I have been inquiring about Yearlings-2 yr olds, I found that HALF the people have a problem with responding to requests for some type of video and photos, and don't have their act together. Some were "big" breeding farm, some probably very small breeders. I also found that many of the yearlings seemed over priced in comparison to a comparable 2 yr old.
                            "The sea was angry that day, my friends - like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli"


                            • #15
                              Market conditions are driven by demand. Since 2009, the demand for horses, especially young horses has dropped, a lot. While breeding is down significantly, there is still an over supply of young horses. That means that breeders have to compete for buyers. The questions are:
                              How do you differentiate your product, in this case yearlings, from other breeders?
                              How do market them where you control the time frame of selling?
                              Traditional listing services are useful but you have two of about 50,000 horses on dreamhorse.com. The shoppers have to be looking for exactly what you are selling. While your response has been good it hasn't converted to a sale $$$. Horse people, me included, are curious about horses and dreamers. So you get a lot of contacts from people that aren't buyers, just shoppers.
                              We're starting to see that our online auctions are answering both of these questions. The online auction differentiates your horses from others by our pull marketing. The people who visit the site and register to bid are more likely to be buyers. With the online auction, you control the time frame. They can't wait you out any more. If they want them, they have to commit to buy them by a date certain.
                              It sounds like you are very aware of how much it costs you to keep them. Even if Oliver, (who is very, very good at this), gets good ribbons with them, will they sell for enough more to cover the additional costs?
                              Which ever online outlet you chose, presentation is crucial. You must have good videos and photos to show conformation and movement.
                              We have a couple of good articles on photos and videos on our website, www.sporthorseauctions.com. Our next online auction is open for entries now.
                              Good Luck
                              Tim Jennings
                              Flashpoint Bloodstock, LLC


                              • #16
                                A couple of Case Studies
                                Our first online auction, with Professional Auction Services, Inc.,was for Quarter Horses. A seller had a cute, quiet trail horse. He was on a listing site for $3,500. Over the course of 6 months he had dropped the price to $2,000. Lots of shoppers, a lady in his barn said she was going to buy him, NO $$$. He put him in the online auction. Suddenly, several people wanted him for the $2,000. He said no to all of them and told them to bid on him in the auction. The horse, who was in North Carolina, sold for $3,600 to a buyer from Connecticut.
                                At our November Online Auction yearlings sold for an average of $3,807, Median $4,100, Range: Low: $2,000 to High: $6,000.
                                Tim Jennings
                                Flashpoint Bloodstock, LLC