Selling a 4yo, broken or unbroken?

hayinamanger

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4yo to possibly sell, do l get him started or not?

Do people prefer unbroken so they start with a blank canvas, or backed and ridden away?

I'd be grateful for some input/experiences, thank you.
 

ljohnsonsj

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is he totally untouched? If a true blank canvas i'd sell as that if he has done bits of long reining, had tack on etc i'd carry on and sell walk trotting cantering and popping a small jump
 

elliefiz

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Depends on what you want for him price wise. I have a mare who is now 4 and quite valuable based on her breeding, etc. Last year I was asked to send her to a top auction where she would have sold very well I think and as an unbroken loose jumping 3 year old. I dithered at the time as wasn't sure if she was a keeper or not. As a 4 year old she will need to be broken and ridden to achieve the price I want for her so she goes off to start her education next week! But means I have to pay for it so wishing I had let her go last year instead! But most unbroken 4 year olds won't be achieving big prices because the buyer will wonder why they hadn't started work yet. What sort of market are you aiming at? Is he a horse for high level competition or an amateurs horse?
 

TheMule

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They're worth more backed and riding away, it's just balancing that price increase against hoe much it's going to cost you to get the horse to the point it can be tried
 

hayinamanger

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Thanks for your replies. He's a WB x Shire, more a competition horse I think. I advertised him last year, but just got dreamers and people who said they 'have always wanted a palomino'. I don't want to sell him, but l have no rider for him.
 

PorkChop

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Depends on the price bracket as well.

I was looking for an unbroken four year old at the beginning of the year and couldn't find one for love nor money!
 

Maesfen

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You either need to have them started well by a reputable person with a good record and ready to go on or leave them as unstarted but good to handle, for farrier etc.,
Some people prefer to have nothing done at all rather than tackle something started badly by a shamateur.
 

tallyho!

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Worth more backed and ridden imho.

Only a small select group of people would want a starter.
 

eggs

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I would expect to pay more for one that has been backed and ridden away. As a cheap project horse then unbacked.
 

junglefairy

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I think it would be much easier to sell something backed and ridden, even just lightly. As an experienced amateur I'd take on something that's backed but very green. I don't have the time or help on the ground to start something myself, I'd consider buying unbroken and sending away but that's expensive and you're buying such an unknown quantity.

I think most amateurs would like to see how a horse has taken to working under saddle and that it's proving to be good natured in (even very light) work.
 

EQUIDAE

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If I was looking for a youngster he is just what I would be looking for - a true blank canvas. Nothing worse than a youngster that has had 'the basics' done and then you have to start from scratch and totally confuse the poor ******... Either nothing done, or backed professionally is my preference.
 

whizzer

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I'm am amateur & just bought a unbacked 4yr old(nearer 5 really!) I wanted an untouched,blank canvass that I could start from scratch with & that's what I've bought. Horse will be going away to be backed & start work as I don't have time/enough help on ground to get one started. Don't mind paying a decent amount either to get her backed as she wasn't expensive to buy.
 

ycbm

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I would pay more money for an unbacked two year old than I would for an unbacked three or four year old from a stranger.

How does anyone know that a three or four year old that they've never seen before is actually a blank canvas and not someone's cock-up or kissing spines horse?
 

junglefairy

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I would pay more money for an unbacked two year old than I would for an unbacked three or four year old from a stranger.

How does anyone know that a three or four year old that they've never seen before is actually a blank canvas and not someone's cock-up or kissing spines horse?
Interesting perspective. I find it too hard to judge them at 2 years old, they can change so much, plus you've got a long wait until they're out competing.

I wouldn't normally be concerned about an unbroken 4 year old, I worked at a stud and a lot of horses got to 4 unbroken because there just wasn't time to start all of them. Depends on the circumstances I suppose.
 

Ahrena

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I bought an unbanked 4 year old (competition horse)

I was more looking for a 3 year old but I specifically wanted unbanked because I felt if i were buying a backed youngster, they would probably of done more than I would want them to do at that age in order to increase value
 

DuckToller

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Why don't you try selling as unbacked 4 year old first, then if no interest, have him backed. It is still early enough in the year - someone might be looking for an unbacked project for the summer.

As you say you are selling because you have no rider I assume you can't back him yourself so will have to pay. Just wondering if you would get back what you have to spend to have him backed - might be worth looking into as well.
 

ycbm

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Interesting perspective. I find it too hard to judge them at 2 years old, they can change so much, plus you've got a long wait until they're out competing.

I wouldn't normally be concerned about an unbroken 4 year old, I worked at a stud and a lot of horses got to 4 unbroken because there just wasn't time to start all of them. Depends on the circumstances I suppose.
Yes, when I say I'd pay more for an unbacked two year old than an unbacked four year old I should have explained that I wasn't talking about it being the same horse :)

Basically, I wouldn't buy an unbacked four year old unless it was cheap. So I would , and have done, happily pay more for a quality two year old than a cheap four year old. I wouldn't buy a quality four year old that I couldn't see ridden unless I'd known of it for at least two years or was completely certain some other way that it was genuinely untouched.
 

hayinamanger

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Why don't you try selling as unbacked 4 year old first, then if no interest, have him backed. It is still early enough in the year - someone might be looking for an unbacked project for the summer.

As you say you are selling because you have no rider I assume you can't back him yourself so will have to pay. Just wondering if you would get back what you have to spend to have him backed - might be worth looking into as well.
Thanks DuckToller, that is definitely a concern as l would expect to be looking at c£1000 to get him backed and riding on. My priority is finding the right home for him, l've got the last 2 spectacularly wrong.
 
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