Also understand - If I had the $$, I, too might take the chance. I've purchased horses at auction. Got burned badly when I purchased a beautiful leopard app gelding - who turned out to be proud cut and crazy mean. (I think he was drugged at the auction, because he was very quiet there!). Got a great deal on my beloved Sugar - she was a wonderful mare. She had her faults, but was my pride and joy for years. Bought a shetland pony for my daughter when she was three and the baby was only a year or so old. Pony was a babysitter when they were little bitty, and had enough spunk to keep them happy until they were just plain to big for her. She went on to become a baby sitter for the neighbor's grandkids for several more years, until she passed away when she was nearly 40!
Bottom line - horses are pretty much always a gamble. You could try to bargain the owner down a bit on the price...?