How to handle this - saddle sent out on trial, person won't pay

Looking for collective wisdom here. :slightly_smiling_face:

My former trainer sent one of my saddles out on trial many months ago to another trainer named “Sally” (not her real name). Sally told me two months ago she wanted it and asked about Venmo payment. I didn’t have a Venmo account at the time but set one up just for this transaction. Sally then dickered about the price - said the trainer had told her $200 less than what trainer told me. I offered to compromise and take a $100 cut.

I have given her ample opportunity to pay, have extended deadlines multiple times, have had multiple text conversations with her where she has offered multiple excuses (horse got injured, child got injured, etc., etc.). I have been very patient and given her additional time but am now really pressing her. Last text from her said she understood my situation and was going to move funds around so she could get it taken care of. I gave her ANOTHER deadline for at least part of the payment with balance due in the next two weeks. Deadline has come and gone and I have received nothing.

I’m not sure how to proceed at this point. I have been advised by others to report the saddle to my insurance company as stolen. That will probably mean a police report and I don’t want to have to go there but I absolutely intend to get this resolved.

Any advice?


Print out and archive all the texts, emails, etc., file a police report and take her to (small claims?) court.

Your former trainer may be a jerk too.

I don’t see why you can’t state her name. She has yanked you around for months. I bet she sold your saddle for more than your original asking price too.


And just like that - she has just paid the amount she was supposed to pay by the last deadline.

Guess my text to her this morning that I was moving to the next step lit a fire under her. Or maybe she is reading this thread. :grinning:

Now I will see if she makes the next payment on time.


I don’t want to publicly out her. She is a young mother with (I think) several kids. And a young professional with her own barn and clientele. I understand the struggles of someone trying to make it in the horse industry. Additionally, we have multiple acquaintances in common (the trainer who sent the saddle to her on trial is aware I have been having problems collecting the funds).

My thoughts are that if this lady can afford to go horse showing, she can afford to pay for the saddle. Hopefully things are on the right track now.


I hope so too! But it sounds to me as though you were chasing her down for the money, rather than her reaching out to you, explaining AND coughing up even $50 in good faith money. Which makes me leery of her and her business practices & business accumen. May her clients be reliable, sane, and pay her on or before the due dates.


Sounds like she is struggling to be professional, to me. I hope she appreciates your kindness, and pays ontime for now on. If you are in the same circles, she’s in danger of burning her reputation right out of the gate.


@DownYonder - I had a similar experience selling a saddle (out “on trial” for months; person not answering my texts, etc.), so I finally texted that I was going to have to report it as stolen. I immediately got a four-word text, “Been in the hospital.” Oh god, I felt like SUCH an a-hole; immediately texted back “I’m so sorry; I had no idea; take your time; I hope you are well”. I asked a mutual acquaintance to pass on my best wishes for her health — she looked puzzled and said, “No, she’s totally fine - she’s just been saving up for a boob job and finally got it a few weeks ago.” I texted back “payment or saddle returned within 48h or I go to the police” and lo and behold, the money is in my account.

Hope you get full payment soon!


Contact her tell her you’re coming to pick saddle up.


Tell your former trainer that her friend owes you money and that you are seriously considering legal action against her friend. Moreover, though you hesitate to blacken her friends name, an action in the small claims court will go public.

I fail to see why being a young professional, having a tough time with her children, it being in the horse world, etc etc makes the slightest difference to the fact that she owes you money for goods sold.


This. I’m a single parent living in a HCOL area & went through a rough patch financially due to a health crisis 3 years ago. My grandmother used to say that she didn’t like for the sun toset on her debts. I’m the same way. It gets paid immediately, or I pull up my big girl undies & talk to the other party & work out a mutually agreeable schedule.

If she can’t pay for the saddle, she sends it back immediately.


Please do make sure your communications with her include something like - I received your payment of $100 towards the X Brand Saddle that you are buying from me. The next payment of $100 is due no later than Y date. Currently the owed balance on this saddle is $zzzz.

Then there is no doubt of all the details and this person can not claim that they paid it all off or that they did not know the date it was due, etc.


Thank you all for your comments. As I mentioned, within only a few minutes of me texting her and posting here about moving to the next step in the collection process, she sent the first payment. It was 12 hours past my latest deadline, but at least she is getting the idea that I won’t go away until this debt is settled.

I have made it clear to her in several texts what my expectations are for the remaining payments (due dates and amounts). She used five different excuses before making the first payment, so it will be interesting to see if she makes good on the settlement now or comes up with yet more excuses.

I will consider outing her if she fails to make the remaining payments. I don’t want to have to go there, nor do I want to have to go to small claims court or file a police report but I will do what I need to do to get this issue resolved.