Selling a Horse on Consignment: How It Works

Selling a horse can be daunting if you lack experience. Instead of trying to feel their way through a sale, yet not knowing if they’ve received a fair offer, many people choose to take the headache out of this time-consuming process by using a consignor.

When you sell a horse through a consignor, you are handing over the reins to a professional who will market and sell your horse for you. In exchange for this service, most consignors will charge a 5-15% commission on the horse’s sale price.

There are many reasons people opt to sell their horse through a consignor. A consignor will often have significant training expertise, high-profile connections, quality boarding facilities, years of industry knowledge and enviable negotiation skills. But one reason is much more common among those who sell their horse on consignment: these private and even professional owners often lack the time and resources to respond to emails, pay for ads and market their horse to get the best possible price for their bloodstock. 

So how do you sell a horse on consignment? We’ve put together the below guide to explain the sales consignment process. 


Step 1: Finding the Right Horse Sales Consignor for You

. For the customer and consignor relationship to work, you will need to be prepared to take a back seat and trust in their experience. 

The best way to find a reputable consignor is to select an agency or individual with a and experience. Any successful consignor will be pleased to share examples of previous successes in the sales ring and will likely present these prominently on their website.

It is also worth considering the quality of a consignor’s facilities. If they are going to board and prepare your horse, then it’s important that they have high-quality farmland and facilities.

Step 2: Preparing a Horse for Sale

One of the main benefits of selling through a consignor is their experience in preparing horses for sale. It typically takes around eight to ten weeks to prepare a thoroughbred horse for the sales ring. It’s a time-consuming process and one that requires experience and know-how to secure the best result.

During this preparation period, a consignor will liaise directly with the vet and farrier to tailor a programme designed to get the best potential out of your horse. 

Horses undergo dedicated preparation and diet regimes to ensure they are in perfect shape and able to fetch the highest possible price.

Step 3: The Sales Ring

The second phase of selling a horse takes place in the sales ring, where horses are taken to auction and presented to potential buyers. Most horse sales take place at auction venues such as , where thousands of thoroughbreds are sold each year. If you opt to sell your horse on consignment, the consignor will guide you through the process on the sales grounds.

An important benefit of using a consignor is that they are often well-connected in the industry and know many of the buyers personally. Having an experienced consignor with in-depth industry knowledge will support the process and ensure you get the best possible price for your horse.

Are you thinking about selling your horse on consignment? To learn more about our consignment services and get advice from leading industry experts led by veteran Ted Voute, book your free consultation today. We’ll discuss what you need clearly and without the scary terminology, and there’s absolutely no obligation to move forward.