Buying the Right Horse
Thursday 07 January 2010
How to Buy the Right Horse
It doesn’t matter whether you’re making those first brave steps into the world of horse ownership or simply want to expand your herd, choosing the right horse is a hard decision to make. Sometimes, you might want to make the decision on pure emotion alone, but certain factors need to come into your thinking when you buy horses.
What to look for when buying a horse for sale
- Old fashioned planning needs to be carried out before you even start browsing around for horses for sale. While the appearance of a horse might tug at the heartstrings, don’t fall into the trap of buying for this reason alone. Jot down the list of all the attributes you require in a horse before you start searching.
- Focus on the negatives as well as the positives in your list, as it’s more than likely these will have some influence on your final decision.
- Be realistic with your budget, and when searching, keep it in mind. Don’t be tempted by horses out of your price range – it’ll only make it harder to regroup and continue your search at a lower price. Remember to factor in hidden costs, such as veterinary bills and transportation.
- Don’t be embarrassed to ask around for advice from those with more experience than you. They can be extremely helpful in throwing light on the many different aspects and issues that come with horse ownership. They can also offer you some guidance on the processes involved with horse sales and factors that you might need to consider in the early stages of ownership.
- Take time. There are plenty of horses for sale out there, so don’t feel like you have to rush the decision. You might find taking a patient approach leads you to making a more informed decision and getting better value for money as you learn about different breeds and types.
- Try before you buy. You don’t want to part with all your hard-earned money without knowing the temperament or character of the horse in question. Don’t be scared to ask the owner a lot of questions about the horse to get a sense of its qualities, and if you’re really keen ask the owner if he’ll let you ride it. This is the best way to acknowledge whether one particular horse is the right choice for you.
- If you’re dabbling in the horse sales market for the first time and have little experience as a rider, then it might be best to spend some time before you invest getting to grips with the riding process. Try and ride as many of the horses on your wishlist as possible; if you’re torn between a couple of different horses, ask if you can leave a small deposit to reserve the horse – this might give you a little breathing space to contemplate a decision.
- Before parting with any money, ask the seller for the horse’s medical details and requirements, to ensure the transaction is completely legitimate. Ask for a pre-purchase exam to ensure the horse is in prime condition for the handover. If the owner refuses to comply with these requests, then it suggests he may not be wholly reliable.
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