Seems like I would finally learn.

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by 65284, Mar 7, 2005.

  1. 65284

    65284 Well-Known Member Supporter

    Sep 17, 2003
    Last month I got a call from some people interested in buying Dexters. They were especially interested in buying a milk cow. I invited them to come and look at what we had for sale. They came and brought the whole family including the kids. I spent a good four hours giving them the grand tour, answering a lot of questions about the Emus, Rheas, Llamas, Swans, etc., as well as the cattle. They were interested in a 5-year-old Dexter cow that is broke to milk, a heifer, and a young bull. After showing they the pedigrees and answering more questions they asked the price of the three animals. After some negotiation, a price was agreed on and a delivery date of today was set. They had moved here from California in December and needed a few weeks to finish fencing the property, they said. Well, early this morning, delivery day, I got a call; sorry we haven't been able to arrange financing for the Dexters. These folks arrived in a new Suburban, were nicely dressed, well spoken, obviously well educated, and the wife was wearing what appeared to be some expensive jewelry. As part of the agreement I did a lot extra for these folks, halter broke the young bull, halter broke the heifer and bred her to one of my bulls that they had selected, and agreed to keep them for a month and then deliver them at no extra charge. This is the second time this year this has happened. I suppose it was a case of “buyers remorse” or they found cheaper Dexters. Does a person’s word have no value anymore? These were both (literally) handshake agreements. I have come to the realization that in today’s world that doesn't mean a damned thing. I have always done business this way, and I hate the thought of deposits and contracts. If a person wants out of a written agreement or wants their deposit back they would probably sue and have a contract voided or deposit returned. The really aggravating part of this whole thing is another looker; cash in hand, tried to buy the cow, and in fact offered me several hundred dollars more than I had "sold" her for. I never even for a second considered letting him buy her, told him she was sold, and wouldn't even talk about it. I guess I'm just too old fashioned/naive/stupid/trusting, or something. End of rant!!
  2. milkstoolcowboy

    milkstoolcowboy Farmer

    Sep 13, 2003
    I've been down that road before. My wife got after me about spending too much time with potential cattle buyers, and I finally learned my lesson. When my boys were here, the work got done if I had to show the cattle, but now I have a near full day of chores.

    I have the heifers or cows I have for sale in the barn. I have all my heifers broke to lead by the time they are 6 months old, so no problem there. I do not offer to show them any other heifers or cows. I quote the price and am upfront about not-negotiating. I'll sit down and go over the pedigrees with them, but I am not spending hours giving a tour of my operation. Most people who come are farmers or guys looking for sale consignments, so not to many lookie-Lous.

    If they want the animals, they write the check that day or within 72 hours (Pickup needs to be within this 72 hours, unless I've done business with the buyer previously, then I'll be willing to go a bit longer. New buyers and/or anything longer, and I want a non-refundable deposit and a written sale agreement. You can open yourself up to issues of liability if you keep sold or spoken for cattle for long periods of time. Business transactions are best kept arms-length.

  3. herefordman

    herefordman Well-Known Member

    Aug 24, 2004
    washington/british columbia
    I agree with Milkstoolcowboy, keep it short with customers, point to the animal, tell them the price and walk away.
    A lot of so-called buyers are skimmers trying to get your animal cheap as they run it to the sale barn, I've already run into the regulars around here, so once you meet the Old Boy Club once, and don't budge on the money, they don't come around again.
    As for "Normal" people, it seems they're getting fewr and farther in between.
    I once had a very well dressed, and very mannerly East Indian fellow try his best to drive my prices down on every animal I showed him, needless to say he left empty handed.
    Although his idea of killing it and butchering it on the spot with a ceremonial sword, and loading it into his pickup and leaving all the parts he didn't want in my pasture had a lot to do with the prices I quoted him.
    Not on this farm.
  4. JeffNY

    JeffNY Seeking Type

    Dec 13, 2004
    New York
    Ceremonial sword? lol, never heard that before. If I ever get one of those, it will be, cya buddy.....

    But the way we do buisness is simple, if its hay and you want hay, and you want to keep hay here. It is paid for, we used to do the whole "oh we will get 500 aside for you". Now we tell them, downpayment to hold it and all sales are final. It works well this way, and we do have some nice proof they bought it, check and receipt. If its an animal, depends who it is, but we have taken down payments and they do come back to pay the rest and get the animal. But there are cut throats out there, people that like to renig on things. If I go to a farm to buy an animal, like I did recently, I will never negotiate a price. Why? I do not like people doing it to me. But this day and age, people are cut throat. More and more people try to rip someone off. I know of people who have done this, and they continue to do so. Happened to my father when he sold out in 81. Guy came along, sold the animals at the auction, told them a different price, in turn getting ripped off. But what goes around, comes around. Scoundrels get what they dish out..

  5. wr

    wr Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    Aug 10, 2003
    Alberta, Canada
    I don't need to make new friends out of customers. I need a deposit (non refundable) with a defined date for closure should that date pass, I may be inclined to wait a while if there's a very good reason. I'm like Jeff, I'ts seldom I would negotiate price because I know it going into a deal and I either want the animal or I don't. I don't invite people to take over my place for the day or afternoon and I don't have many problems and those that seem to want to inspect everything I have usually turn out to be tire kickers, just looking for ideas not livestock.