I see it happen all the time. After trudging through, both online and in person, the multitude of homes for sale, our Buyer has finally found a good house. They are ecstatic. They have walked, measured and completed their due diligence and are ready to make an offer! Not so fast…before they do, they want to show the winner to a trusted friend or family member and get their opinion. This is perfectly understandable; it is a whopping big decision.
Except, the friend does not have the same basis upon which to form an educated opinion and give good advice of the property. They have not trudged through all of the homes for sale like the Buyer has; they have not seen the homes the buyer dismissed nor the market data regarding value. They are coming in at the final selection. So, how much weight should their opinion have?
I have seen more than a few regretful buyers living in the hindsight of a good decision reversed by the opinion of well-meaning, but uninformed friends. If a Buyer wants the opinion of a trusted friend or family member to have value, the friend should accompany them on each showing. When the context is equal, the opinion might actually mean something.
Most of the time, the Buyer is really asking for the friend’s approval of the decision they have already made. Now, that is a fine idea…and probably applicable to many more situations than just real estate. So, the next time someone asks for your opinion of a decision they are making, ask yourself if your opinion is knowledgeable enough to contribute value. Your friend may be looking for your approval and support, instead.