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  1. #1
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    Default Sales Advice

    Looking for input from experienced breeders/sellers... I am NOT a professional breeder but I've produced a very classy youngster from well-bred, competition-proven parents. I have two interested buyers who've put in offers at the same time. My question is, how far can/should I go in investigating these possible homes, and selecting a buyer based on personal preference as opposed to first-come, first-served or highest price? What is considered reasonable behaviour on the part of sellers, as opposed to being overly possessive and demanding?

    Buyer A wants foal for a nice price, but has a questionable amount of practical experience. Owns several nice horses, including stallions, and has plenty of land. Seems uninterested in vetting, and offered to pay full price sight unseen. I suspect this individual keeps horses as pets, but does seem to take good care of them. Wants to finalise a sale ASAP.

    Buyer B wants foal for slightly below asking price, but has a proven competition record and experience bringing on young horses. Wishes to proceed with viewing/vetting before going further.

    Do feel free to tell me how unreasonable I am being... I do know I am being overly sentimental and my judgement is clouded by my emotions. Mostly I am just curious how other sellers go about such things.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by Lost_at_C; Oct. 22, 2012 at 01:08 PM.
    Proud COTH lurker since 2001.



  2. #2
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    Nov. 30, 2005
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    Northfield MN
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost_at_C View Post
    Looking for input from experienced breeders/sellers... I am NOT a professional breeder but I've produced a very classy youngster from well-bred, competition-proven parents. I have two interested buyers who've put in offers at the same time. My question is, how far can/should I go in investigating these possible homes, and selecting a buyer based on personal preference as opposed to first-come, first-served or highest price? What is considered reasonable behaviour on the part of sellers, as opposed to being overly possessive and demanding?

    Buyer A wants foal for a nice price, but has a questionable amount of practical experience. Owns several nice horses, including stallions, and has plenty of land. Seems uninterested in vetting, and offered to pay full price sight unseen. I suspect this individual keeps horses as pets, but does seem to take good care of them. Wants to finalise a sale ASAP.

    Buyer B wants foal for slightly below asking price, but has a proven competition record and experience bringing on young horses. Wishes to proceed with viewing/vetting before going further.

    Do feel free to tell me how unreasonable I am being... I do know I am being overly sentimental and my judgement is clouded by my emotions. Mostly I am just curious how other sellers go about such things.

    Thanks!
    Congrats on producing such a nice youngster

    If you don't have other foals to sell and are not trying to promote a breeding program, I see absolutely no reason to take a lower offer. Both buyers sound like they will take good care of your foal. I wouldn't be overly concerned about buyer A's lack of desire for a vetting. Vetting a foal is rarely more than a wellness exam as flexions should not be done and rad results can be misleading at this age. The fact that Buyer A has ample space for the foal to grow up in would be a huge plus for me.

    If it is important to see the foal in a competition home, I would tell buyer B that you have a full price offer that they would need to meet.

    I would not take less unless I felt it was going to really benefit my business. Even in a proven competition home, things can happen that would prevent your foal from making it to the ring.



  3. #3
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    Nov. 14, 2004
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    Fleetwood, PA
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tuckawayfarm View Post
    Congrats on producing such a nice youngster

    If you don't have other foals to sell and are not trying to promote a breeding program, I see absolutely no reason to take a lower offer. Both buyers sound like they will take good care of your foal. I wouldn't be overly concerned about buyer A's lack of desire for a vetting. Vetting a foal is rarely more than a wellness exam as flexions should not be done and rad results can be misleading at this age. The fact that Buyer A has ample space for the foal to grow up in would be a huge plus for me.

    If it is important to see the foal in a competition home, I would tell buyer B that you have a full price offer that they would need to meet.

    I would not take less unless I felt it was going to really benefit my business. Even in a proven competition home, things can happen that would prevent your foal from making it to the ring.
    Very good advice with which I agree.



  4. #4
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    May. 20, 2009
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    Default

    I would not take less unless I felt it was going to really benefit my business. Even in a proven competition home, things can happen that would prevent your foal from making it to the ring.

    I agree



  5. #5
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    Mar. 12, 2006
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    Western South Dakota
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    Default

    Congratulations on producing a youngsters that two people want at the same time! So you don't need to accept a lower offer.

    Both sound like good homes. If you don't "need" to promote your breeding operation, I'd go with buyer # 1. Mostly because so many things can go wrong with babies, it makes sense to finalize the sale ASAP.



  6. #6
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    Oct. 30, 2005
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    California
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    Default

    Ask for them to allow references from a licensed DVM on whichever buyer you are leaning towards first, and also inquire as to whether or not they have purchased horses in the past, and ask to contact those sellers as well. I know from recent and extremely unhappy experience that folks can present themselves very well to you; tell you they have acres of glorious farm land and take wonderful care of their horses, but in reality can't afford what they currently have. I'm also skeptical of people who like to own stallions, but aren't known stud farms. I would also tend to see a bit of red flag with seller A's pressuring you. Ask around on that one....Also important; if they have not conducted good business in the past with other sellers, then expect that they won't with you either. Also, take a buyer who will pay in full at the time of the sale over any that want to make payments. Good luck.
    Last edited by Indy-lou; Oct. 23, 2012 at 12:17 AM.



  7. #7
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    Mar. 28, 2006
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    Default

    I don't see Buyer A as pressuring. I see see Buyer A as decisive -- the sort of buyer I am. I do my research and know very, very quickly if I do or don't want/like the animal I am looking at. I have never done a vet check on a youngstock purchase. There is so little to check and they have so little life experiences where they might have sustained damage. For ME, it's money wasted.

    From the seller's perspective, unless someone is waving a red flag, or I have some other reason that I think the first person to agree to buy the animal is unsuitable, I do go with the first person to say yes.
    Family Partners Welsh Ponies - Home of Section B Welsh stallion *Wedderlie Mardi Gras LOM/AOE http://www.welshponies.com
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  8. #8
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    Oct. 28, 2007
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    Pacific Northwest
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    Default

    all good thoughts/opinions. bottom line? give buyer A your bank's wire instructions and ask for his arrangements on transport. get a health cert & coggins (coggins only if over 6 mos. old) together, and at some point be sure to celebrate the occasion with you taking the buyer to dinner.



  9. #9
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    Apr. 28, 2008
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    Default

    From a non-professional breeder perspective, if you want to have the fun of watching the youngster grow up in a competitive program, that might be worth a little cash on the table to me. Personally. Of course there are no guarantees that baby will make it -- but I'd enjoy watching the colt's future at Barn B more, so I might be willing to steer him that way if I could make it work. Particularly if you don't feel Barn A is going to take great care of it.

    From a business perspective, Barn A is the obvious choice.



  10. #10
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    Nov. 6, 2009
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    Default

    I agree that I would consider offer A the better offer. However, I agree that something sounds a little sketchy about person A. Who buys a performance prospect from someone they don't know without ever having seen the foal or having a vet or a friend check it out in person? If I have inspected a foal in person I might pass on doing a vet check, but not for a sight unseen sale. Foal pictures and foal videos aren't--to me at least--as informative as for a grown horse. Something like a slight club foot or a small umbilical hernia might not show up clearly on film.

    Why should you care? Because sales like this, at least IME, have a high likelihood of having issues afterwards. It's easier for a less informed buyer to have buyer's remorse. She could get the foal and be dissatisfied with its size or quality or find some flaw with it that you didn't know about. The foal might get sick or injured en-route and since she's never seen it you have no proof you didn't sell her a sick or injured foal. While legally the sale should be final, the reality is that there is an animal in the middle and your reputation is also on the line.

    If I have two buyers on hand, my preference usually goes to the person who has seen the animal in person. In this case though, your long distance buyer has given you a better offer. So, I'd probably go with that one. I'd probably have my own vet inspect (briefly) the animal prior to shipping it out, and I would insist that the buyer waive her vetting in writing in the sales contract.



  11. #11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BeeHoney View Post
    I agree that I would consider offer A the better offer. However, I agree that something sounds a little sketchy about person A. Who buys a performance prospect from someone they don't know without ever having seen the foal or having a vet or a friend check it out in person? If I have inspected a foal in person I might pass on doing a vet check, but not for a sight unseen sale. Foal pictures and foal videos aren't--to me at least--as informative as for a grown horse. Something like a slight club foot or a small umbilical hernia might not show up clearly on film.
    While I understand the concern, I will say that this year alone I have purchased two foals sight unseen, as well as two mares also sight unseen. Three different owners, first time purchasing from all three owners. All four are home now and they are AT LEAST what I thought they would be, I would go so far as to say better. Didn't vet check any of them, BUT I also do a little digging on the seller before making the purchases. If I find a seller with a sketchy reputation, I have walked away from a potential purchase before. Not worth the headache, too many honest sellers out there.

    Was it risky? Sure. Have I done it before? Yep. Ever been disappointed? Once (not this year ), but that was a risk I knew I was taking and everything worked out okay. As a buyer, I do my research on bloodlines, family history, siblings, parents, grandparents, performance, crosses, show history, videos, pictures... you name it. Most of the time I have a VERY good idea what I am getting myself into. Maybe Buyer A is the same way, maybe not. Who knows?

    I say go with Buyer A. Sounds cut and dry, and very much how I like to make my own purchases.
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  12. #12
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    Aug. 11, 2000
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    Default

    Yes, you should take the money and run.
    I wolud agree with not taking less than the asking price
    Last edited by Carol Ames; Oct. 28, 2012 at 07:07 PM.
    breeder of Mercury!

    remember to enjoy the moment, and take a moment to enjoy and give God the glory for these wonderful horses in our lives.BECAUSE: LIFE is What Happens While Making Other Plans



  13. #13
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    I've produced a very classy youngster from well-bred, competition-proven parents.
    I'd go with buyer B (has a proven competition record and experience bringing on young horses) - I'd want my horses to have long term value, pet horses are not all that successful at finding successive homes if/when pet owner circumstances change (this is expecially true of young horses raised by inexperienced "pet" owners).

    There are plenty of sale ads that note price is negotiable to a competition home or will sell to a competition home only.



  14. #14
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    Jul. 14, 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideagoldenpony
    I don't see Buyer A as pressuring. I see see Buyer A as decisive -- the sort of buyer I am. I do my research and know very, very quickly if I do or don't want/like the animal I am looking at. I have never done a vet check on a youngstock purchase. There is so little to check and they have so little life experiences where they might have sustained damage. For ME, it's money wasted.

    From the seller's perspective, unless someone is waving a red flag, or I have some other reason that I think the first person to agree to buy the animal is unsuitable, I do go with the first person to say yes.
    ^^THIS!
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lorelei Welsh View Post
    While I understand the concern, I will say that this year alone I have purchased two foals sight unseen, as well as two mares also sight unseen. Three different owners, first time purchasing from all three owners. All four are home now and they are AT LEAST what I thought they would be, I would go so far as to say better. Didn't vet check any of them, BUT I also do a little digging on the seller before making the purchases. If I find a seller with a sketchy reputation, I have walked away from a potential purchase before. Not worth the headache, too many honest sellers out there.

    Was it risky? Sure. Have I done it before? Yep. Ever been disappointed? Once (not this year ), but that was a risk I knew I was taking and everything worked out okay. As a buyer, I do my research on bloodlines, family history, siblings, parents, grandparents, performance, crosses, show history, videos, pictures... you name it. Most of the time I have a VERY good idea what I am getting myself into. Maybe Buyer A is the same way, maybe not. Who knows?

    I say go with Buyer A. Sounds cut and dry, and very much how I like to make my own purchases.
    You sound like a more knowledgeable buyer who has done a lot more homework than the buyer in question, though. You also understand the risk you are taking. I admit, I'd accept buyer A's offer myself, it's just that in my experience those super-excited less experienced buyers who may not have done all their homework (even though it is their choice) are much more likely to do something flaky like back out at the last second or have buyer's remorse after the sale, so when I deal with people like that I'm a little bit careful.

    FYI, as far as "vetting" potential purchasers, if they say anything that doesn't sound right I might do a google search, but I've never asked for a reference. Usually if you just spend a little time chatting with people you will get a good feel for whether or not they would be an appropriate home for a particular horse.



  16. #16
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    Aug. 28, 2007
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    I'd tell B if they will match As offer they've got a deal.
    A sounds like one of those Nigerian scams to me.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Indy-lou View Post
    I'm also skeptical of people who like to own stallions, but aren't known stud farms.
    Ditto. The ones I know around here are CRAZY. I'd never sell a horse to someone who just liked owning stallions because they are stallions. Never met one of those that I didn't want to run away from. And none of them provided a particularly good life for those stallions either.



  18. #18
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    Nov. 30, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Indy-lou View Post
    I'm also skeptical of people who like to own stallions, but aren't known stud farms.
    Quote Originally Posted by Perfect Pony View Post
    Ditto. The ones I know around here are CRAZY. I'd never sell a horse to someone who just liked owning stallions because they are stallions. Never met one of those that I didn't want to run away from. And none of them provided a particularly good life for those stallions either.
    IME, at least in jumperland, this is simply not true. There are many high performance horses that have been left intact. Unless there are behavior or health issues some owners and trainers prefer not to geld. These stallions get excellent care and are usually quite successful.



  19. #19
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    Tuckaway, I agree with you re: stallions in performance homes, but in this case the OP says that the prospective buyer seems to be keeping her horses as pets in which case I think it might be reasonable to consider stallion ownership as a possible red flag depending on the details.

    Re: trying to use Buyer A's offer to get a better offer out of B...its a good suggestion but just be aware that kind of thing can backfire. Let's say you tell B that you have a full price offer from another buyer, but that you prefer to sell to them since they are a competition home. Buyer B might say no, they aren't increasing their offer. Then you go back and start finalizing the deal with A, and they flake out for no reason. So, you go back to Buyer B and let them know you'll take their lower offer, but now they are thinking either 1) that you lied about the full price offer to try to manipulate them into paying more, or 2) they are wondering why the first buyer passed on the horse--was there something wrong with it, was it not as nice as they first thought, overpriced, whatever. Both of those things can cast a pall over a potential sale.


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  20. #20
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    B sounds better in terms of your youngster having better long-term prospects. A sounds fishy, and at some point in the future if A has to get out of horses or just wants to sell the one they bought from you, what kind of future will their horses have?

    (I am biased towards horses having a *job* if they are capable and sound.)
    You have to have experiences to gain experience.

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