Oh and any tips you guys might have would be greatly appreciated as well :)
I have bought a few horses in the past. So here's my thoughts.
1. NEVER go look at a horse who has anything you don't want in it. I don't know about you but I get attached to those big brown eyes and don't wanna let go. I have almost made the mistake of buying one of them, even though the horse would have been a terrible match for me.
2. Never bring a trailer, or money, when you go see a horse. Sleep on it, and think hard on it.
3. Never trust the seller. ALWAYS test what they say, and have them SHOW you what the horse can do. No matter how nice they seem, don't take their word for it.
4. Always pay attention to weird behavior and follow your gut. Ask plenty of questions. Horse looks awfully skinny? Could be that they underfeed him to keep him calm for a quick sale. Also people drug their horses, watch for the signs of that. (And yes, I have had that happen to one of my family members, horse went nuts as soon as they got it fed well).
5. Know what you are looking for before you go looking.
6. Go prepared with questions to ask, pertaining to things you are looking for. (For example, you want a horse with good feet. Ask the owner how often the feet are trimmed, if the horse has ever foundered, worn shoes, etc. Also observe the feet and write down your notes)
7. And probably my number one rule: make the person bring in the horse from it's natural pasture, or stall. Watch them do everything from catching to saddling to bridling. If the horse is tacked when you get there, red flag. Ask the owner to un-tack the horse and start from square one.
There are things called "buyer sheets." If you search the forum you will find some very good ones. Its a great way to organize the information you receive when you go look at a horse and to remember to ask all the important questions.