Joe Simon has many sales in the Twin Cities. He comes down to our sales here in Oklahoma in the spring and early summer and usually buys a semi-load of broke horses to take back and sell through his monthly sales.
Here is his schedule. His next 'regular' sale is the 14th. Simon Horse Company - Twin Cities Horse Sales
Go to one sale without any intention of buying. You will be able to identify the slaughter buyers real quick. They usually stand in the ring or very close to it and they will bid (usually just a nod of their head) on all of the cheap horses. You will soon see how much they are paying and know how much you should have to pay.
Auctioneers and killer buyers will 'run you up' if you go around running your mouth. Just sit back where you can watch them and you will get a real good idea of what is going on. It may not be what it seems.
NEVER buy one from a KB. They will usually ask $100.00 more than they paid or even more than that. If you think one of them is running you up, just quit bidding and let them get it. They will stop running you up.
Pay real close attention to legs and feet. If you buy one and you decide it not going to work for you, bring it back to the very next sale and find another. Too many people just throw away good money after bad. There is no honor in 'saving' a useless horse.
They are waaay down here right now. They get really cheap every summer and fall and are worse now because of the drought and high hay prices. Don't worry about one being thin. Beware of fat ones because they are most often either 'bad actors' and really spoiled or are crippled. They are also a lot higher priced. Look for good legs, good feet (probably very long) and pretty heads. Color helps a lot when you go to sell them.
Let us know what you end up getting.