If your buddy is in the business, he likely doesn't like them because they sell "cheaper tools" for much less $ and take business away from him. And if you do go there, be prepared to buy tools you would never buy if you were looking to get craftsman, makita, dewalt, etc.
Moded CJ6 from "the gods must be crazy"
It's Harbor Freight because all the tools come from the Harbor. Poor made Chinese tools and knock offs. Like you said, great for home owner tools, or tools you're only likely use a couple of times. However if you're a professional you'll want sometching more reliable and built with an overall high quality.
There is a place for everything.