My girlfriend Lauren Goché created this hilarious (but dead on accurate) infographic…. the Dad Home Inspection. I have personally heard and experienced every single square.
After you finish your chuckle, chortle and/or giggle- give it a little thought. Why is the Dad acting this way? How do you react?
You might want to defend the house, the deal, or even your place as the kid’s trusted advisor. But you know that is unlikely to help, so you stay quiet and hope the kids will remain committed to the home.
Would you miss an opportunity to get the Dad on your side? What might change if the Dad felt you understood HIS thoughts and concerns at the home inspection?
Practical Responses To Dad Home Inspection
Instead of staying quiet and hoping for the best while Dad inspects the home, let’s use a little tactical empathy.
For example- all of those signs that he doesn’t trust the condition of the house? What if you were to say, “You know, you can’t be too careful. Nothing worse than getting into a money pit”.
Any comments about “when we bought OUR first house” and you can observe- “today’s housing market must seem insane by comparison”
“I dunno, I think you could get more for your money…”
This is a kick in the pants, right? It sounds like he is going to tank the deal. But… is that what is really on his mind? The great thing about labels vs questions is that a label feels neutral while a question can be perceived as a confrontation.
Take a moment to visualize yourself as the Dad. Now, how does it feel when I ask, “Do you think the kids should buy some other house?” Would the Dad need to defend his statement and double down on the idea that this house is too expensive?
Now, same visualization but imagine me saying, in a neutral “just making and observation here” tone of voice- “sounds like you are not liking this house”. A label is brilliant because it leaves a lot of room for the Dad to disagree- and it is human nature to feel powerful when correcting someone.
The Way Dad Sees It…
By the time you get to inspection hours- maybe even hundreds of hours- of your time has been spent earning the trust of your buyer. It’s natural to feel a bit of frustration when the Dad shows up and seemingly undermines all of your hard work.
You’ve invested hours, but the Dad has invested years. When you factor that into your response to the Dad Inspection you will completely change the dynamic. Dad may even become your biggest ally.