The paper examines a plausible reason why the results are inconsistent about family business financial performance. Less agency cost is a common explanation when family businesses perform better than non-family businesses. Nonetheless minimizing agency cost through trust and strong social and emotional bonds in the family can lead to lower financial performance in several cases, because control is less strong. Therefore, less agency cost is not enough to make a general explanation. In the behavioural agency model family business managers do not seem to be risk avoiders. Instead, they avoid loss even if it means riskier decisions. They preserve the socioemotional wealth of the family, which) is the most important capital for them. Behavioural agency model explains why family business performance measures are inconsistent. Under certain circumstances family businesses risk tolerance is not static, socioemotional wealth is used as a reference point.