Taking a saddle on trial. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 11:58 AM Thread Starter
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Taking a saddle on trial.

I have been trying to sell one of my saddles for awhile now and I really just want to get rid of the thing. I've had a couple of people contact me about checking it out but none of them panned out. Now I've got this woman asking if she can take my saddle on trial and I don't know what to do. I would hate to pass up the opportunity to sell my saddle. How would I go about a trial though? I really don't want to just give her the saddle and hope she gives it back or pays me. But then she probably wouldn't trust me to give her the money back if she doesn't want the saddle. Help?
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post #2 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 12:00 PM
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Unless you want to take it to her and watch her ride in it, I'd say no trial. You're not a consignment shop, you're a private owner looking to sell a used saddle.
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post #3 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 12:24 PM
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I'm going to talk from the buyer prospective. I did take saddles on trial couple times. Every time I offered recommendations (my trainer, vet, and farrier) and a check on the amount they asked for the saddle. One person just let me borrow the saddle (she is from the same horse organization even though we never met before), other one kept a check for 2 days (till we return the saddles). And just to add both times I borrowed quite nice and pricey ones. One more person offered to come to my place to try the saddle (actually that was the most convenient for me even though it didn't fit :) ).

So I'd just nicely ask if it would be possible for the person to leave a check while she tries or if she lives close by if you could just bring a saddle to try.

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass: it's about learning to dance in the rain..."

"When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves."

"How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."
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post #4 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 01:48 PM Thread Starter
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I would still hesitate to even take a check because she could still take my saddle and stop payment on the check. I may be going a little over-board with my worries but I really need the money from this saddle. I can't afford to take the chance on loosing it. I ended up telling her that I would be willing to bring the saddle to her barn so she could ride in it but that I would not feel comfortable letting it out of my possession without receiving payment for it. I honestly doubt I'll hear back from her since I have gotten emails from people who were "extremely interested" in the saddle only to never hear from them again.
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post #5 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Speed Racer View Post
Unless you want to take it to her and watch her ride in it, I'd say no trial. You're not a consignment shop, you're a private owner looking to sell a used saddle.
Very true.

Trust is a two-way street. I've a 'customer' still owes me a couple of hundred pounds from a saddle he bought six years ago. All because he gave me a sob story I was stupid enough to believe. I'm too easy-going.

I do sleep nights, though.

If you loan out the saddle, take a cheque and cash it. You can always give it back.

The battle that never ends is the battle of belief against unbelief - Thomas Carlyle

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post #6 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 05:49 PM
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I always let people try saddles they buy from me. I ask for the full purchase amount in cash. I hold their cash for 24 hours. I take pictures from all angles to document the condition, and have them sign that that is the condition they received it in, and if it's returned in any condition other than that, the amount of damage will be deducted from their refund. No refunds for damaged trees.

They have to trust that I won't take their cash and run. I have to trust that they'll take care of the saddle. I've only ever had 1 saddle come back, and there was no damage at all.

Saddles are much easier to sell at much higher prices if the buyer can try it and not risk getting stuck with something that doesn't fit right.
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post #7 of 26 Old 07-09-2012, 06:28 PM
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I'm just starting a saddle search, and from a buyer's perspective, I'm hesitant to spend that much money on something without a return option- there are just so many variables that it's impossible to know if a saddle will work without putting it on my horse. When buying from someone on the internet, there's the additional risk that the item might not ever reach you at all- either because the seller took the money and ran or because it got lost in transit.

If the buyer sends the money in full through Paypal, I believe the Purchase Protection policy applies if the item is never received, isn't as described, etc. but doesn't necessarily apply if the item is as described, but just doesn't fit. (Although it might still apply if the Paypal invoice indicates a return period that wasn't honored) If you use your credit card, most credit cards offer additional protections, but then Paypal takes a cut of the sale. In this case, it makes sense for the buyer to pay in full up front (which also discourages people from taking the saddle on trial on a whim)

As long as I got at least a couple days to try it out after receiving the saddle, I'd personally be willing to pay in full up front for a saddle through Paypal with my credit card, as long as the seller marks the terms of the return period on the invoice (how many days from receipt of goods, who pays shipping both ways, etc.). I wouldn't expect a lengthy trial period from a private seller.
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post #8 of 26 Old 07-10-2012, 08:24 AM Thread Starter
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I would have no problem letting someone try it out for a period of time if they paid me first. If it didn't fit them or the horse or they didn't like it for whatever reason I would be fine with taking it back and returning the money. But being that I'm selling it on Craigslist, I feel like no one is going to trust me to give them back their money if they don't like it. There's just so many scams on there.
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post #9 of 26 Old 07-10-2012, 08:49 AM
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Unless I knew the person (at least through association) I wouldn't just give them the saddle.

As others have mentioned, I think the return option is a good one. Where they pretty much buy the saddle and maybe have 48 hours in which to return it or something. Which gives them enough time to go out, ride in it, and see if it works out. If it isn't in the condition it was before I wouldn't accept it back.

Even though its not the best situation, even if the saddle doesn't fit its not like they are completely ruined - they can always sell it on. The trade off to buying used saddles is the risk, and the savings are large to compensate.

Can you try selling it through consignment at a saddlery, where they can send it out on trial but are responsible for it? I'm always taking stuff home from my saddlery, like three rugs to try them on, then coming back and purchasing the one I want. Or just taking a saddle overnight to try. But then they are responsible for the goods - not you.
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post #10 of 26 Old 07-10-2012, 09:29 AM
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I'm an old hand at this. Ask her for cash that you will issue her a receipt. Since the receipt will be dated, include on it that the saddle must be returned by ? date (3 days) if she wishes a refund. Let her know she is not to alter the saddle in any way and that means cleaning or oiling it. If she tries to return it altered in any way she loses the refund. It takes about 20 min to know if the saddle fits and works for the rider. The 3 days, or even 2 clarifies that the saddle is not on loan and comes back whenever for a refund.** If you don't demand cash up front there's a strong possibility you will be trying to get your saddle back, listening to a bunch of b.s. stories and wasting your gas to fetch it. Not worth it.
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