By buying a pig on eBay, you’re giving yourself a chance to make money and earn a good return on your investment.
The key to success is knowing when to ask for help.
Here’s what you need to know before you start buying a hog on the popular auction site.
When to ask: When you’re ready to sell, it’s always best to start talking to an auction house, as they have the best track record for finding the right pig.
“Ask them about the pig, what it looks like, and what kind of pig it is,” says Robert B. Wertheim, author of the guide, How to Buy a Pig.
“It’ll give you the confidence to ask about the price and get a better understanding of what the market is for that pig.”
Bids on pigs go up and down throughout the year, and it’s common for a buyer to wait until the right price is hit before starting an auction.
You may want to wait for a while to get a good idea of what a good deal looks like before you make your first offer.
Understand what you’re getting yourself into: Buyers may want you to look at the size of the pig or whether it has a neck.
“Buyers like to see the neck, so it’s important to look up that as well,” says B. Scott Williams, a certified pig breeder and the owner of Wertheimer Farm Pig Co., in San Jose, Calif.
He suggests that you look for a pig that weighs more than 30 pounds.
“You want to look for the neck and not the head, because you’re not getting the best bang for your buck,” he says.
“For example, if the pig is in the market for a 10-pounder, the buyer wants to see if it has the head or not,” he adds.
Pay attention to the size: A good rule of thumb is to look closely at the pig’s weight to determine if it’s worth a lot of money.
“Look for a big pig with a good neck and large, firm ears,” says Williams.
“If the pig has a big neck and ears, you may get a bargain,” he explains.
“That’s the key.”
If you have the right size, he says, the price will come down because you can’t compare it to what other buyers are paying.
Find out the price: “A lot of pig dealers will tell you that you need a price of $50,000 to get the best price,” says Werther.
“But if the price is $25,000, you can expect to get better returns than if the same pig is sold for $30,000,” he warns.
“Some pig dealers offer pig prices for sale that are between $30 and $40,000 per pig.
This is a great price because you get to pay a lot less than what other people are paying.”
“Buyer beware,” says Scott Williams.
A good pig buyer will always make sure the pig you buy is healthy and up to date before he or she sells it.
The buyer will also ask a few questions to make sure it’s a pig of the right breed and quality.
“Before you sell the pig,” Williams says, “buyers want to know what the buyer thinks about the breed, breed and age,” so the buyer will have an idea of how the pig will perform in the future.
“The buyer should be able to tell the difference between a good, young, healthy, well-fed and old pig,” he recommends.
If the pig does come with a collar, wear it: If you’ve been looking for a good-looking and healthy pig, you’ll want to get one that comes with a collars, too.
“We’ve seen some pigs that are on sale that have collars that don’t work,” says David H. Miller, owner of Miller Farms, in New Jersey.
“A collars will keep the pig warm, comfortable and protected in the warmer months, but it won’t last for the winter,” he notes.
“When the weather is cold, a collar will keep you warm and will make you feel more comfortable in your home.”
Know when to walk away: You may get the opportunity to sell the dog or cat you’re looking for on eBay in the fall or winter.
But that’s not always the case.
“Don’t be fooled by the title,” says Miller.
“As soon as you walk away from the pig with your family and you have time to think about it, you need another pig to go and take care of, you will probably get an opportunity to buy another,” he advises.
“With a dog or a cat, you have to be patient, because there’s a good chance that the seller may try to sell them for more money.”
Buyers who are inexperienced may be disappointed: Some buyers who are new to buying pigs may be upset when they