Started typically means that the ground work has been initiated. Some gated work as far as ques in asking him to travel through the different gates and direction in a round pen or on a line. Sometimes it can also mean that lateral movement exercises have been started as well. So he should have a clue as to what you are asking of him when on the ground, but you should also expect some delays and sometimes a lack of understanding.
This is generally the first week to two weeks of training, and a saddle has not even begun to be addressed.
Honestly.. for an unregistered and just started paint/pinto, no more then 1000 US dollars. Yes, he has nice coloring, but the sellers are banking on color to sell him.. remember the old addage, a pretty and colored horse doesnt mean a good one. Believe me, I will be the first to want to fall for a beautifully colored paint! LOL! But I rely much more on lineage and foundation for a good horse to carry on. Now this doesnt mean that an unregistered horse is not worth getting, but generally for the cost, something that has no background generally wont carry that price demand. Negotiate him starting at 500, and go from there. You will be much happier and wont regret paying that much for something you could have bought elsewhere for that price. Just my opinion!
"Started" could mean all sorts of things to all sorts of people. To me started means 3 months of training. That's what I put in my add's anyways when im selling horses. But some might think that started could mean "had a saddle on a few times and led around a paddock"...make sure you ask before you buy! I woudlnt pay 1500 for a unreg. Paint horse. He is pretty! I like him and he looks like he could be fun...
He's pretty, but for being untrained and unregistered he's a bit pricey. Started is a loosely defined word. It can mean they just threw a saddle on him once, but it could also mean he's had 30 days of training. It depends on the seller's definition of the word.
If you are thinking of buying him and don't have experience with young and untrained horses I urge you to find something more experienced for the price.
To me, "started" means they have been started under saddle with just the basics, but need a lot more work. The best thing to do is ask them what they mean because it can vary as you see from this thread.