Judge and the Jury

Real Estate Agent with Century 21 Liberty Homes RS-#62825

 Should family and friends get involved and give their "advice" in the property selling or purchase process of their family/friends when they are not a real estate agent? That is the question and "court is in session"!

In life situations, as in business I believe there are two sides to everything. ALWAYS. Otherwise, how would I come to a decision of any one point being made?

In this case I will look at the pros and cons of "helping" family and friends with their real estate decisions when they have an agent. It can be beneficial or it could be detrimental in the sale or purchase of the property.

Please give your input so I can add to this list and in the end we all can come to a decision (or opinion) together to give insight to others as well.

The pros of having family and friends getting involved with the sale of the property:

  • The family/friend is "associated" with the Real Estate Industry and knows "some" of what is going on and feels that they can benefit their family/friend.
  • They are emotionally involved because they are friends/family and feel they can "help" them with not getting "ripped off"
  • They "care" about their family/friend and want to make sure that anything "bad" about the property should be addressed.
  • They could be helping them get a better deal because of all of the above.

The cons of having family and friends getting involved with the sale of the property:

  • The emotional involvement can alter the "advice" they are giving because everything is looked at in an emotional state and not in a professional business sense.
  • They do not have a real estate license and aren't qualified or licensed to give advise.
  • They may cost them the sale if they are giving incorrect information.
  • They will be blamed by the family/friend if the sale is jeopardized.
  • They already have a real estate professional who is assisting them and that real estate professional is not letting emotion get in the way of their better judgement. ( I could go on an on but we get the idea here)
  • Added stress is doubled...may be tripled ..for the decision making process for the client because there are "too many" chiefs for a decision the client should be making with the assistance of their agent.

Believe me, I have been in several transactions where the family or friends are giving their advice. It was stressful and a struggle to prove that I was THE professional and worthy of listening to. I also took into consideration that the family member was "highly trusted" and it made the job harder although at times I had to show understanding and compassion when trying to get MY point across when the family/friend was wrong.

My opinion is I do not appreciate when others get involved because it most often than not jeopardizes a transaction and stresses the client out to no end. I have had instances where the buyer/seller put everything on hold because of it.

A real estate transaction is always stressful for all parties involved and with a real estate professional's sound advice we are geared to take on the stress and make the transaction as smooth as possible.

Now...the jury is in.....let's hear from you all.




Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman, RA     * Century 21 Liberty Homes*

95-2214 Kipapa Drive, Mililani, HI  96789

Direct Contact:  808-375-1404                                                          


Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman's Mililani Hawaii Real Estate Blog 2007©

All pictures the property of Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman© 

Hawaii Relocations



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Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman  is a Realtor-Associate® and Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) with Century 21 Liberty Homes in Mililani, Hawaii. With a sharp understanding that a listening ear is the key to a client's needs  she serves the island of Oahu (Honolulu County) and all Hawaii Military Relocations, Hawaii Retirees, Hawaii Job Transfers and Hawaii Residents, Home Buyers and Sellers.


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Hawaii Real Estate and Relocation Blog.

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Comments 84 New Comment

Art Blanchet
Stranger in a Warm Land
On the Outside Lookin' In


I give my kids advice ALL THE TIME (they're all over 18 now) and many times end it with this caveat,

 "It's just my advice.  Now remember, if advice had any value, people wouldn't be giving it away..."

Everyone is an expert.  My brother has an antique business (which he has to tweak to match the market) and at one point posted a classified asking people to invite him into their attics and basements to look at their treasures and see if they had anything of value to sell.  He said this was OK - but it was ruined because of Antiques Road Show (ARS)Everyone thinks they have a priceless heirloom.

A typical offer could go something like this: 

Mark:  "I like this table.  Would you accept $100 for it?"

Homeowner:  $100?!?!  There was on IDENTICAL to it on ARS that just went for $25,000!!!"

Mark:  "That's true, it was identical.  Except the one on TV was 300 years old, yours is 30.  The TV one was handmade by a reknowned furniture builder, yours is an assembly line reproduction.  The TV one was in perfect condition, yours has a leg missing.  The TV one has an immaculate finish, yours was in a fire, has 11 coats of cheap paint, and was eaten by termites.  And the TV one was made of solid wood, and has intricate carving and inlaid ivory  - yours is particle board and plastic with pseudo veneers.  So $100 is all I can go, but they ARE identical except for those little differences.  Maybe someone else will give you what you want..."

A LITTLE knowledge is a dangerous thing, mostly because it wastes time, confuses the client, trivializes the true professional, and kills deals. 

Next time you're in for heart surgery, tell your physician what your alcoholic Uncle Wilbur says should be the procedure.  Then ask if he can match Uncle Wilbur's fee.

(Then update your will.)

That was MY free advice to YOU!

October 01, 2007 10:47 AM
Thomas Weiss
Thomas R. Weiss


I am sorry I didn't get here sooner, My computer died!! I think anyone who gives advice, needs to be educated in the Business first, or else they are just talking Frivilous!!! But I have written about this before, and I think it's a bad idea to have them involved.

Tom Weiss

October 01, 2007 10:35 AM
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
RA, CRS, Hawaii Mililani Oahu Real Estate
Century 21 Liberty Homes

Art:  Do I want FREE advise? lol!  Thanks for your input...always nice to "see" ya~!

Tom:  I still say...it would depend on the situation. I don't turn the family away unless they're causing trouble.

October 01, 2007 10:55 AM
Chad Baird
Re/Max Spirit

I was at a friends cookout last weekend.  His father just sold his house and is looking for a new home.  I was looking at his listing sheets they were considereing and recognized an agents photo.  I remarked "I would love to punch him in the nose".  The father heard me and said "Thats my agent!  Is he a bad agent?"

I relized my error and had to ease his mind.  The agent is a Very agent, just a very tough negotiator.  Then he likes to rub it in a little, but in a friendly way.  I really do like the other agent.  The father is very well represented.  If he has any concerns he could also tell his agent what I said and the other agent will laugh and know why I would make such a comment.  He was at ease. 

It became really clear that I do have to be careful about what I say, even in social situations because I am a Real Estate Professional.  My comments could be taken out of context and kill a whole deal.  Based on that one comment, The father was ready to fire his agent, and likely use me going forward. 

I pretty much take the stance:  I will be supportive but not discuss the details or negative issues that come up.  Talk tour agent.  I will only talk in general terms. 


October 01, 2007 11:01 AM
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
RA, CRS, Hawaii Mililani Oahu Real Estate
Century 21 Liberty Homes
Chad: Good points as well. I believe I do the same as it will only be another issue of the buyer/seller not making up their own minds what to do and again...the family will add more stress than what it may be.
October 01, 2007 11:05 AM

Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman

RA, CRS, Hawaii Mililani Oahu Real Estate
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Reading my blog will give you the human side of this Real Estate Industry Professional as well as allowing you to walk beside me through my writing about Hawaii Real Estate & our Local Area. As a resident of Honolulu County Hawaii for 42 years you will get a tour of a lifetime. Specializing in Hawaii Relocation Military VA Home Buyers you can be rest assured you will be in good hands. I LISTEN to YOUR needs and give you sound advice. Hawaii Relocations, Hawaii Military Relocations, Mililani Hawaii Real Estate, Living in Hawaii, Army Navy Air Force Marines in Hawaii. Read more at www.cheesemanhomes.com