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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had someone come out to try my pony for their lesson program and they want to do a trial to make sure it works out and he fits in their program. I want to make a contract up for the terms of this trial/purchase but beings as I have never let a horse go on trial before I'm a bit stumped.

Does anyone have an example of theirs that they wouldn't mind sharing with me?

I'm only asking $1,500 for the pony and they haven't contested. What is an appropriate amount to ask for? Some that I see online say 10% or 50% during the trial period and the rest when they decide to buy. Others say they pay the full amount. I'm not sure which I should do, if they like him they are a few hours away so full amount might be easier? Should I allow a two week trial or a 30 day trial? I feel like 30 days would give him more time to settle into their routine and they can see who he really is but he's so chill he'll probably settle in in a day or so.

I know I need loss of use, death, should he be injured under their care they pay, but I'm drawing a huge blank on everything else.

Thank you in advance for any help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Really? I don't have a ton of experience buying and selling horses and I myself have never done a trial so I didn't know that it was unusual?

Should I express that to the potential buyer? How would I express it without sounding so "it's all or nothing." They really loved him and his personality. They rode and woke with him for a good 45 minutes and still really enjoyed him. I don't see how he wouldn't do well with them.
 

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Really? I don't have a ton of experience buying and selling horses and I myself have never done a trial so I didn't know that it was unusual?

Should I express that to the potential buyer? How would I express it without sounding so "it's all or nothing."

They really loved him and his personality. They rode and woke with him for a good 45 minutes and still really enjoyed him. I don't see how he wouldn't do well with them.
Exactly ^^^^^. A $1500 horse is a very inexpensive horse. If I were looking to buy him, I wouldn't even do a pre-purchase exam on a horse that was in his price range, you'd soon be in the position of spending more on the PPE than on the horse. If they are any kind of trainers at all, they know right now if that horse will work or not. They want to trial him so he can do something wrong and they can say, ""MMMMMM I don't know, it's kind of a risk. Would you take $900?" or undercut you somehow. What if the horse gets injured in their care? They'll say, "Oh well, he is lame, we can't use him." and bring him back.

It's up to you how directly you want to word it. I tend to be real direct. I would say to them, "Sorry, I will not allow any horse to leave my possession for a trial, especially not one who already fits your criteria so well and is priced so low.". That's fairly nicely telling them to put up or shut up. If they know their business, they know they can sell that horse, and to whom, for at least $3K. Which I would not begrudge them, they're in the business to make money, but they don't need to take money from you to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you guys! I am calling the potential buyer after work tonight and I'll discuss my concerns with her. I'll let you know what happens.

My plan, as of now, is to say I will take the full amount and if it doesn't work out in two weeks he can be returned for a full refund as long as he is still sound and healthy.

Should I take photos and videos of all sides of him the day he leaves with the potential buyer present as proof he was sound and sane the day he left my property?
 

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Should I take photos and videos of all sides of him the day he leaves with the potential buyer present as proof he was sound and sane the day he left my property?
Absolutely and have a statement that accompanies it. "Photos taken by Your Name, and the date they're taken. Then have you and the buyer sign, that the horse is sold as is, where is, no guarantees, but that as far as you and the buyer know the horse is healthy and sound as of DATE. Then spell out that you will take the $1500 (cash) and hold it until XX Date. If the horse does not work for the buyer as of that date, the horse can be returned in the same healthy, sound condition as when picked up and you will refund the money less $500 for withdrawing the horse from the market and possible loss of other sales opportunities. If they don't agree, no deal. As far as I'm concerned the whole thing smells and I wouldn't go for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Absolutely and have a statement that accompanies it. "Photos taken by Your Name, and the date they're taken. Then have you and the buyer sign, that the horse is sold as is, where is, no guarantees, but that as far as you and the buyer know the horse is healthy and sound as of DATE. Then spell out that you will take the $1500 (cash) and hold it until XX Date. If the horse does not work for the buyer as of that date, the horse can be returned in the same healthy, sound condition as when picked up and you will refund the money less $500 for withdrawing the horse from the market and possible loss of other sales opportunities. If they don't agree, no deal. As far as I'm concerned the whole thing smells and I wouldn't go for it.

Thank you, thank you, thank you. This was very helpful and I very much appreciate it!

I will update with the outcome!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Okay, this is why I really, really don't like selling horses.

I discussed the trial period with the potential buyer and she said we would put 50% down and do the 30 day trial. Okay, fine I agreed to it (even though I KNOW I shouldn't have but I just want this pony to have a great home and they seem like such awesome people.)

I send them over the trial/purchase contract stating that the AGREED upon price of $1,500 was non-negotiable and the 50% deposit of $750 was to be given to me in cash or cashier's check before he leaves. I said they had two weeks to get a vet check and if it didn't go well they were to bring him back immediately and I would return their deposit. (Which to me sounds fair.) She wanted me to change the contract to state that should anything be found in the vet check we negotiate the price and change it. The price was already agreed upon before the vet check so in my mind that means no negotiation or am I incorrect in that thinking?

In the beginning these people sounded perfect but now something isn't feeling right. They want his paperwork when they take him for trial and I said no paperwork until he is paid in full. They want me to make the purchase price negotiable pending vet check when we had already agreed on the purchase price (which I think is a steal for what he is, personally.) before the contract was drawn up. We shook on the purchase price after a verbal discussion. My fear is they are playing games and trying to take him and 1) Lie and say that the vet says there's something wrong with him (when there isn't; he is sound and sane) in order to make me come down on the price or 2) Have a "free pony" to use for 30 days in their lesson pony only to send him back when the trial is done for whatever reason.

I don't know this just doesn't feel right anymore and quite frankly it is making me a little agitated. How do I address this properly without sounding like a royal pain in the behind? As mentioned above, he's cheap it's not like he is a $10K horse he's a sweet little backyard hunter pony that I can't stand to watch sit unused anymore.

Ugh I do not enjoy selling horses. That being said, anyone want a cute little pally pony?
 

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If it’s not feeling right to You Phantomcolt then back out of the deal. Don’t think you’re being a jerk about it - it’s your responsibility to get the best deal for both you and your horse.

FWIW, it’s been my experience when one party starts mucking about like that it and tossing around additional clauses or changes they’re going to be continually difficult and tricky to deal with. If you don’t want to get involved with the ensuing headache, leave and don’t feel bad in the least.

If you want you can say something to the effect ‘I have given this further thought and I have decided not to sell at this time’. Just keep it simple and don’t engage in a debate with them. Good luck.
 

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Okay, this is why I really, really don't like selling horses.

I discussed the trial period with the potential buyer and she said we would put 50% down and do the 30 day trial. Okay, fine I agreed to it (even though I KNOW I shouldn't have but I just want this pony to have a great home and they seem like such awesome people.)

I send them over the trial/purchase contract stating that the AGREED upon price of $1,500 was non-negotiable and the 50% deposit of $750 was to be given to me in cash or cashier's check before he leaves. I said they had two weeks to get a vet check and if it didn't go well they were to bring him back immediately and I would return their deposit. (Which to me sounds fair.) She wanted me to change the contract to state that should anything be found in the vet check we negotiate the price and change it. The price was already agreed upon before the vet check so in my mind that means no negotiation or am I incorrect in that thinking?

In the beginning these people sounded perfect but now something isn't feeling right. They want his paperwork when they take him for trial and I said no paperwork until he is paid in full. They want me to make the purchase price negotiable pending vet check when we had already agreed on the purchase price (which I think is a steal for what he is, personally.) before the contract was drawn up. We shook on the purchase price after a verbal discussion. My fear is they are playing games and trying to take him and 1) Lie and say that the vet says there's something wrong with him (when there isn't; he is sound and sane) in order to make me come down on the price or 2) Have a "free pony" to use for 30 days in their lesson pony only to send him back when the trial is done for whatever reason.

I don't know this just doesn't feel right anymore and quite frankly it is making me a little agitated. How do I address this properly without sounding like a royal pain in the behind? As mentioned above, he's cheap it's not like he is a $10K horse he's a sweet little backyard hunter pony that I can't stand to watch sit unused anymore.

Ugh I do not enjoy selling horses. That being said, anyone want a cute little pally pony?

Remember - he is your horse still - say "Nope, this is the deal I'm willing to make". You don't have to negotiate with these people over a $1500 horse. Don't let them walk all over you and take advantage of you. You know what is best for your horse, and you have a bad feeling about these people; be the advocate of your horse and say no. There will be other buyers, especially if he is as broke as your say he is. You will find a perfect home for him, it may just take time!
 

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Back away now! something very similar to this happened to me. We had a pony we rescued from a bad situation. He had been foundered and we rehabbed him and my 4 young kids rode him. When they lost interest I put him up for sale. I was very honest that he needed frequent trims and to stay off of grass. I had a lady come out with a friend. They brought 4 or 5 kids with them. All of them road Scotty with no issues, we discussed in detail his care (and in email before they came to look) the lady buying him was a police officer and buying him for her daughters 4th birthday. I agreed to a 2 week trial with final approval after 1 week by her farrier. She left me a check for the full price. 1 week goes by and I did not hear from her so I called - her farrier had OK'd Scotty for riding and said he was good to go. Week 2 comes and I try to cash the check - she had put a stop payment on it. I tried to call and email her for another week. I was freaking out. I get home from work one day and there is Scotty tied to our fence. I don't know how long he stood there before I got home. He had lost weight and his feet were sore. I called and emailed again and finally had to threaten to contact her supervisor. She then proceeded to tell me that Scotty was NOT sound and her daughter never got to ride him. After looking at my poor pony and having the vet out we came to the conclusion that they had ridden him - A LOT until he was so sore he could not walk. So it would seem they brought him home used him for pony rides until he was sore and then brought him back. It was just sad all around.

Back away from these buyers!
 

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Sounds fishy to me. No, no, and just no. You are already allowing them to push you around by changing the parameters that you were comfortable with.


And taking his papers? You've got to be kidding me.


A PPE vet check ideally should be done before a trial starts anyway.



Tell them you've changed your mind and either they outright BUY him, or they can look somewhere else. No trial.


Personally, I don't like doing a trial with a living breathing animal, either from the buying side or the selling side. Too many things can happen.
 

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Nope, absolutely not. This stinks all over. They pay the full price for the pony with a 5-10 day period in which he can be returned if he is not satisfactory, or they don't get him at all. If they're worried about a vet check, that should be done while the horse is still in your possession. There is also no reason you need to offer a trial at all, either.

For a $1500 horse, a trial and vet check is kind of ridiculous anyways.... the vet check will cost nearly half the purchase price if they do decent radiographs. If they want to do a PPE, it's called a 'pre purchase exam' for a reason. It's done before money changes hands. It sounds to me like they want to take him on trial, have their vet find something wrong with him, and offer $750 or disappear altogether leaving you with half your money and no pony. Nope. Nope, nope, nope. BAD feeling about this. He's your pony; trust your gut.

I hate trials unless it's to a person I personally know and trust to be honest and care for that horse. Anyone else, no way-- even so, the trial is for a few days. Too much can happen in two weeks. That's putting a living animal at risk, and it rarely ends well. What usually happens is that they return the horse the last day in poor condition and with training issues you now have to fix. Just....no.

The whole situation sounds fishy. Walk away from this one, and relist the horse for sale with firm terms. $1500 firm, horse sold as-is, vet check at buyer's expense welcome. Even if the vet finds something, that does not mean you are required to lower the price. That's for the buyer to decide-- do they still want the horse at that price or not. If you want to haggle, fine, but don't give a nice pony away. Good ponies bring good prices. Stick to your guns to find a good home for this nice pony.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Nope, absolutely not. This stinks all over. They pay the full price for the pony with a 5-10 day period in which he can be returned if he is not satisfactory, or they don't get him at all. If they're worried about a vet check, that should be done while the horse is still in your possession. There is also no reason you need to offer a trial at all, either.

For a $1500 horse, a trial and vet check is kind of ridiculous anyways.... the vet check will cost nearly half the purchase price if they do decent radiographs. If they want to do a PPE, it's called a 'pre purchase exam' for a reason. It's done before money changes hands. It sounds to me like they want to take him on trial, have their vet find something wrong with him, and offer $750 or disappear altogether leaving you with half your money and no pony. Nope. Nope, nope, nope. BAD feeling about this. He's your pony; trust your gut.

I hate trials unless it's to a person I personally know and trust to be honest and care for that horse. Anyone else, no way-- even so, the trial is for a few days. Too much can happen in two weeks. That's putting a living animal at risk, and it rarely ends well. What usually happens is that they return the horse the last day in poor condition and with training issues you now have to fix. Just....no.

The whole situation sounds fishy. Walk away from this one, and relist the horse for sale with firm terms. $1500 firm, horse sold as-is, vet check at buyer's expense welcome. Even if the vet finds something, that does not mean you are required to lower the price. That's for the buyer to decide-- do they still want the horse at that price or not. If you want to haggle, fine, but don't give a nice pony away. Good ponies bring good prices. Stick to your guns to find a good home for this nice pony.
You put into words what I could not! And I bolded in your response what my main thought was of what would happen. They seemed perfect. Trainer came out, barn owner came out, three of their lesson kids came with them. They worked with him for over an hour and loved him. If they liked him that much they would have bought him then right? I'm scared they're going to use the heck out of him and bring him back ruined when it took me SO long to get this boy where he is. I took him from terrified of people (to the point of shaking like a leaf and peeing himself) to a kid safe, happy little hunter!

I told her I would like her to put 100% of purchase price up before he goes on trial and she responded with "Well I'll put down half." They seemed like nice people so I agreed but now they're trying to change EVERYTHING and it's making me nervous.

Thank you guys so much. I am not even listing him for sale because I am picky about where he goes I just kind of respond to in search of ads as of right now. I just want him to have a home (preferably in a lesson barn) where he will be loved and spoiled on and USED. He's 13 years old and just a pretty pasture ornament because I don't have the time that he deserves.
 

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I told her I would like her to put 100% of purchase price up before he goes on trial and she responded with "Well I'll put down half." They seemed like nice people so I agreed but now they're trying to change EVERYTHING and it's making me nervous.

Next time that happens, say "I'm sorry, but I said I require 100% of the purchase price." Period. Your horse, your terms.


Some people are good at manipulating others. Stand your ground.


(But I agree that you need to pass on this one, for reasons mentioned above!!)
 

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Agree with the others; a PPE is done before the pony is purchased at the buyers expense.

Do not allow these people to push you around, for your pony's well being. You must be his advocate.

Personally I would not want one of my animals to go to a lesson barn as a lesson horse/pony. Those places tend to use them up then send them to the auction/slaughter when they are no longer able to keep up with a grueling schedule.

It is not a good life for an equine to be ridden hard everyday by multiple people often jerking on the poor animals mouth and bouncing on their back.

It ages them quickly :frown_color:
 
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