Buying a horse on a “budget”

EDIT- I have purchased a horse from Holland, seller recommended by a few close acquaintances

After the sudden passing of my absolute heart horse and healing from it(I’ll honestly never be over it), I’m on the hunt for a young Hunter jumper prospect for 1.30m. Im on a “budget” of 40,000 USD, at one point Im sure I would’ve been able to find something but right now everything in my range in the US is meh. I only have this money from the mortality insurance so I’m trying to be careful.


  1. Have you bought a horse off video? Who did you buy it from and would you recommend?

  2. Good breeders in the USA with horses 2-4 years?

Im aware of the risks of purchasing off video, I can learn to ride the horse and be patient with its greenness. But I would be devastated if I bought a neurological psychotic animal.

What exactly are your expectations? I’m not currently horse-shopping, but I really find it hard to believe that you’re only able to find “meh” prospects with a budget of 40k!

Are you totally opposed to importing? A quick glance on bigeq and I found a cute hunter prospect in Germany for 25k - at that price, you could fly over to try him yourself (and probably several more while you’re there!), import to the US and still come in at or around 40k.


Given what we’re seeing with relation to Imports and EDM and the correlation between less youngstock grazing 24/7 on Vitamin E rich pastures, I would for sure switch away from 4-6 years and over to 10+ years and already in the US and consistent. I would take the minor issues over the “Uber talented youngster.”

I love my English friends that helped me find and buy C + C, but I would need a LOT more to feel safe buying another one on that side of the pond, knowing what I know now.

Canadian horses and Argentine imports are still the deals in this market.



I am needing something 16.3 at a minimum, decent mover, decent jumper and more whoa than go, to jump at least 1.30m. I’ve looked all over the place in the USA, probably have inquired on around 45 horses and none of which have been what I need or are 10k+ over budget. I have also been solo searching but just added the help of a trainer but that lowers my budget even more for a finders fee. Import is what I’m leaning towards at the moment.

Prospect is just what I want at this point, I enjoy bringing them along and building that relationship.

I got an insane amount of tests done on a horse I liked from France last week, he had enough “small notes” to make me turn away. He was from the breeder of my last horse.

Just saying you can buy a prospect from North America that may have had a better chance at eating enough grass to not find it has EDM at age 6-9.



Have you looked in Canada? I just had a pony arrive that I bought, um, impulsively, and I got a very good deal. You will save a lot on the transport, too. There’s a 4 yr old by Beezie Madden’s Judgement ISF on Warmblood Sales right now that’s within your budget…


I was just about to say the same thing, I’d suggest looking in Canada. There are a lot of farms there with breeding programs with great bloodlines, and you can find some nice prospects. I’ve done a buying trip there and it was easy. The cost of import is more like buying in the US too.

I have a friend I trust who imports a lot leaving for a buying trip to Germany tomorrow. Let me know if you’d like me to connect you? She will be very honest about if she can help with your budget.

I have! Just haven’t found much there yet, WB sales a Facebook group?

Would love it.

I was just going to write this, too. I don’t think our prices have skyrocketed (yet) like they have in the US.

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It’s just but I’m sure there’s good FB groups up there too, found mine via FB!

Whats your budget? Jessica Phoenix has a few for sale that would fit that criteria.

what is this you’re talking about?


I believe OP said that it was 40k

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Friend knows of one that is huntery, dead quiet and already jumping around but it’s under 16.3 and probably closer to $42k landed. Can you clarify if you’re looking for a nicer-going jumper prospect with hopes for the 1.3 ring or a big hunter derby horse? The first is probably doable in budget; the second is extremely unlikely, especially over 16.3 and with a great vetting. (Also my condolences on both losing your horse and on trying to horse shop in this wild market!)

OP mentioned recommendations of breeders with 2-4yos, so I’m assuming they’re perfectly fine with something unstarted or newly under saddle.


Equine Degenerative Myeloencephalopathy

The easiest and best info to find about EDM is here.

Short version: lack of vitamin E in the development stage of foals/weanlings etc can lead to a disease that degenerates the brain. There’s no cure. The only way to confirm it in a horse 100% is by samples of the spinal cord and brain in a deceased animal.

Lots of research going on and lots left to do to better understand this disease. European horses/imports are seen with this. Thought is that since many of the European farms, breeding programs do not have the mares and foals out on pasture as we do here, that unless they are supplemented with Vitamin E, they are not getting enough of it when it’s needed.

That’s not to say it isn’t in domestic breeds as well, because it is. Watch the video and you can get many of your questions answered.

There also have been 2 Chronicle stories about recent cases as well.

The symptoms present differently than some other diseases and a major sign is a sudden behavioral changes. Often people will look to sports medicine vets for lameness workup or ophthalmologists for sudden spooking at things that horses didn’t care about before.

EDM is very real and a lot of COTH members have unfortunately owned or known horses with this.



Not worried about having the Hunter hack / over fences winner but absolutely don’t want a hot headed, drag me to the jump with choppy gaits and bad jump form horse. Something that would be a “fine” Hunter and decent jumper. I hope that makes sense?