When you test drive to make sure it drives straight, stops correctly you should also be taking it to a trusted repair shop for the professionals to be looking at the frame and welds underneath.... it isn't just wood rot that tells a story.
You want to know if these are original owners and if not where was the trailer originally titles/plated from...certificate of origin think it is also known as.
Salt and brine used on roads can corrode many a undercarriage severely.
Your truck insurance should cover you when towing, however make sure your insurance agent is aware of the trailer and places a rider to your policy to cover you just in case.
In many states, if you trailer anothers horse and take one-dime you stepped over the threshold and are now technically commercial shippers...be careful and know your states laws.
When the trailer sits in your yard if damaged your homeowners policy should cover damages, again make sure you speak with your agent for coverage.
If you keep it at a barn I don't know how that might affect coverage, speak to your insurance agent for accurate answers.
When we notified our agent of the trailer(s) acquired, the rider to our policies cost us $5.00 every 6 months but the peace of mind is fantastic to have.
Make sure the hitch welds have been properly checked for soundness.
Brakes, the trailer should have a emergency cord that you thread through your hitch and you use every time, never skip this
, as it is the safeguard should the trailer uncouple from the truck/hitch if your trailer brakes are working/functioning correctly the trailer will stop in a straight path not veer off the road and horrors happen.
Having a trailer is
The life you protect and look to safeguard is that of your horse and more importantly you
as you will be riding in the truck that's towing that trailer.
Make sure this purchase is safe and sound mechanically.
Small things of tires are easily replaced if questionable in condition & age.
Doors, walls, windows, floors, floor supports, hitch and axles to me are the most important and absolutely need a visual inspection done by a professional or very competent person so nothing is missed that could be catastrophic if not attended to after purchase and before use.
All trailers over certain weights are titled and over a certain weight brakes become mandatory and law-mandated in most states.
I know of no horse trailer that does not have either of these items, and honestly if the trailer doesn't have a title and brakes I would walk away
from the purchase no matter how good a deal it seems...
The only other thing that comes to mind is make sure the trailer has a VIN plate...
Few horse-trailers are "homemade" so the manufacturers plate is a must to make sure what you are told is what you are purchasing...or it is hearsay.
On my trailers that plate has year, weights, tire size engraved on it and it is riveted by special rivets by manufacturer.
My plate is located on my trailer tongue, driver side on both my trailers.
Here are some places for factual information about registering, titling and plating trailers in Texas. https://getawaytips.azcentral.com/te...-12390385.html
I sure hope this is meant to be, if not...keep looking.
Don't buy something you will regret or that doesn't work and easily fit your current horses, needs and wants...but especially is safe and road-worthy now...
The right trailer is out there just waiting for you...