How do I say “no” to potential buyer?

Annaboo

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20 October 2020
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I had somebody come to view a pony I’m selling today, her daughter (who the pony would be for) came and rode the pony, and although pony went absolutely foot perfect today, I didn’t feel that the child had enough experience and confidence while riding. How can I best explain this to the interested party without sounding too condescending or rude? Interested party is a friend of a friend so definitely don’t want to cause any hurt!!
Thanks in advance :)
 

Winters100

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Good for you recognising that this is not a good match and not just offloading pony to the first buyer who comes up with the cash.

I have always been straightforward in these instances and told buyers that I can't see them being a good match. If they are sensible people they will appreciate you being straightforward with them and potentially saving them a lot of heartache. If they are not sensible people they may be offended, in which case you will know that you were right.

A few years ago I had a very awkward situation when a friend kept pushing to buy a very good horse which I was selling. He was for sale because he was too sharp for me, and the friend who wanted to buy him was a much less experienced rider than I am. After trying several times to tell him softly that they were not a good match I had to just be direct and say 'I won't sell him to you because there is a good chance you would break your neck'. He was a bit put out at the time, went on to buy a similarly sharp horse which he now can't ride, and has since thanked me and lamented that the dealer who sold him the one he has did not tell him the same.

Speaking personally I would be grateful to a seller who was honest about this - better for both the horse and the buyer.
 

sunnyone

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How about:
I thought they went quite well together but pony can be a bit sharper (or other suitable word) than it was when X rode it. X is still a little young to cope with the sharpness and I'd hate to be responsible for a potentially severe accident which could happen to either one of them. If pony is still for sale next year then we could have another look.

That way child gets no criticism and you appear as a caring person, which is what you are.
 

ILuvCowparsely

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5 April 2010
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I had somebody come to view a pony I’m selling today, her daughter (who the pony would be for) came and rode the pony, and although pony went absolutely foot perfect today, I didn’t feel that the child had enough experience and confidence while riding. How can I best explain this to the interested party without sounding too condescending or rude? Interested party is a friend of a friend so definitely don’t want to cause any hurt!!
Thanks in advance :)
1. I would say - I have someone else who tried him before and had asked first refusal.
2. be honest and say you feel the pony might be too much for the child in certain circumstances.
3. you were really looking for a rider with more experience.
4. "I really appreciate your coming out to see this horse, but I don't think your a good match for him,"
 

NooNoo59

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Perhaps suggest that they come again, take it for a supervised hack or a lesson with their instructor, maybe they would take the advice from someone else, or voice your concerns to your friend and get advice on the best way to move forward
 

Not_so_brave_anymore

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14 January 2020
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Definitely just say the truth! Say the pony went very nicely for the little girl in this very specific, familiar, controlled environment, but you you think he'd be too sharp for her under other circumstances.

Don't be too grovelling or apologetic, just state it like a definite fact- you are the expert on your own pony! A reasonable parent will be very glad of your honesty. The type of parent who underestimates the pony and/or overestimates their child is not the sort of parent you really want to sell to anyway.
 

oldie48

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TBH I'd just be honest and say you felt they weren't a good match if you think the pony will be too much for the child, however, it does depend on how much support the child will get, how knowledgeable the family is, what the child is going to want to do with the pony etc. Neither of my daughter's ponies were on paper a good match for her, too young and pretty sharp but we had good trainers, were prepared to pay for schooling on as required and daughter knew she was going to have to have a steady year getting to know the pony and improving her own riding. I remember our vet said he didn't think the second pony was at all suitable but said pony took daughter to pc champs and FEI trials and was her horse of a lifetime. He spent his last few years on loans to one of the partners at our vets as a schoolmaster for his daughter! Perhaps an honest conversation is required?
 
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