HOW TO RESPOND TO LOW BALL OFFERS. My husband and I run an auto repair shop in a suburb of Columbus Ohio. We get ball parkers, discount hunters and low ball offer people all the time. We have some set pricing around the shop and we do quality work. We CAN’T give it away. We’ll go broke. It’s a business. We are looking for quality customers that are looking for quality service. YOUR job as a breeder is to produce quality horses and put them with people who will appreciate them based on quality…NOT PRICE. Every post you make should absolutely SHOWCASE your quality. Remember that. (Article continued below.)
For many people, horse breeding is a hobby. You have to decide what your intent is and work your pricing from there. Sometimes, we get shocked by the offers we receive for our horses. Often it’s when the offer is about 50% of our asking price. Here are some tips:
* DON’T GET ANGRY. Expect it. These people could be looking for a good deal at the best price possible. Some do it more respectfully than others. You can use the offer as leverage as you going forward…whether realistic or not. It’s your opportunity to let other potential buyers know that you stand behind your prospect and won’t give him away. Always try to get a potential buyer to call you or visit your farm if they live within 2-3 hours. Recently, I saw someone post an ISO a horse and had 357 responses. This is an indication of a very undefined search and doesn’t sound serious to me.
* WHY ARE THEY DOING IT? Could be several reasons: (a) they aren’t serious at all, (b) They don’t care the same things you cared about when you were pricing your horse, (c) They are unfamiliar with the market, (d) They are testing you, (e) That is simply their maximum budget, (f) They are investors looking to turn a profit later or (g) You’re overpriced (hey… it happens).
*WHAT ARE YOUR OPTIONS? When selling you have four basic options to try to reach a sale. (a) Accept, (b) Counter, (c) Reject or (d) Ignore. There is a difference between c & d. I have said “We’re simply too far apart in price… Best wishes and Good Luck to You.” If someone wants to engage a belligerent conversation about a low price, I IGNORE at every angle. Do not engage. It will come back to bite you. If you are within 25% on price, you are close enough to really start negotiating!!! This is probably a serious buyer. Work the price. Offer a concession that will make the sale go through… an insurance binder, delivery / delivery credit… something that will make it easier to say yes. A serious buyer wants your horse. You can get there.
*DROPPING THE PRICE. You may have to do this but when I do, I start to really think about the market and decide if I want to cut back or hold the horse (no pun intended) a little longer until I think his marketability has improved. Make sure you do a good comparison of apples to apples in the industry. Talk with the stallion owner. Analyze what’s in front of you carefully. Get good advice and look carefully at your prospect, the market, and your geographical region.
FINAL TAKEAWAY – This is a difficult market. Tailor your operation to survive & thrive. Know what your stock is worth. There is always a market for good horses and there is always a market for not-so-great horses. Your job is to maximize the potential of what you produce. Discounting your horse could put him at a serious disadvantage down the road.
Written By, Laurie Kinnear Kuchler. Share this on Facebook if you found this article helpful!