You have to watch what you buy - just like anything. Custom made western saddles are expensive but they will last a lifetime and will hold their value. Depending on what you buy it can make a huge difference in your ride and the comfort of your horse. MY favourite saddle is a Jerry Shaw saddle - it fits like a glove, keeps you centered and is beautiful to say the least. They are expensive ( at least I think this is expensive~$3500 _ I never thought I would ever, ever pay that but after riding in one there was no question about it). I would buy a second one in a minute if I could afford to. If you are lucky you can find used quality saddles out there. I would buy that over the same priced new saddle.