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Stuff People Who Don't Know %^@# Do to Houses
August 1, 2014
12:47 pm
avatar
I like to watch Dr Phil drunk
Feline Porklord
Meows: 1870
Snarking Since:
October 25, 2012

Stenciled Subfloor said
Our house is almost 150 years old, so right off the bat we have issues. There are two parts to our house: the original one-room, and the stone part that was built at the turn of the century. The stone part of the house is literally just stone, horse-hair, and plaster. No warmth in the winter AT ALL. When the two "houses" were connected, I guess it wasn't sealed or whatever where the roofs meet, because EVERY DAMN TIME that it rains, the stone that is visible from the inside (our entryway and downstairs bathroom) leaks and has water trickling down.

All the stairs in our house are about half as deep as they should be.idontknow

When indoor plumbing was added to the house, one of the bedrooms was converted to the bathroom. There is no fan, and whoever installed a tub put a horizontal drain in. I am not even kidding. What I used to think was a clog that no amount of Draino could clear is actually a long horizontal drain that evennnnnntually goes vertical. As long as I have been here, there has always been standing water. Always. 

The cabinets in the kitchen are not level (the entire frickin house isn't, but whatever), so my Kitchen Aid mixer has to be wedged under the lip of the uppers and that one spot is the only place it will fit. There was a floor vent that blew dust and cat hair up in the bowl until we redid the floor and positioned it sideways (so it would blow out and not up).

This is trivial and just "they didn't know $@%# about decorating" but every single room had a different type and color of carpet. Every single room also had a different type and color of floral wallpaper. The upstairs hot-mess of a bathroom still has both. But, that is our next project…PRAISE BE! party0006

DO YOU LIVE IN MY HOUSE? I have all those problems. 150 yr old house with kitchen addition that leaks where it meets the original home and also a f**ked up bathroom that has no vent (but has a window at least). Tub is in the middle of the room, the drain to the bathroom goes up to the toilet on the other side, so the tub HAS to have a horizontal drain until it meets the toilet. It gets stopped up with hair, I got a plastic snake and the f**king thing just bends sideways only so far.

At some point in my home's history, an owner decided they didn't want to deal with the plaster anymore, so they just drywalled it in. Except they dry walled over a fireplace in the living room. I'm too scared to open it up. They did an awful job of mudding and taping too, it's so lumpy. 

Found out that someone used like 7 inch deck screws to hang mini blinds up in some bedrooms. idontknow 

Most eating-away-at-me of it all — previous homeowner had an expensive pellet stove put in the dining room and tiled in the fireplace and built up and tiled a hearth platform for it. Looks great, works great. Except the hearth platform and stove, which isn't an insert but a free standing stove both stick out a total of 5 feet into the room. So a dining table doesn't actually fit in there anymore, unless its for 4 people or smaller and is pushed up against one of the walls. She effectively f**ked that room over and made it barely usable. I want to remove the stove so badly and just get an electric fireplace or something, but my husband loves the thing and gets so upset if I even talk about it. UGGGH.

August 1, 2014
1:46 pm
avatar
RegionalThing
Hamcat
Meows: 104
Snarking Since:
May 16, 2014

Matching Adult Sized Care Bear Undies said

I guess my biggest wtf moment had to do with buying our first house not diy. At the closing the lady said she & her family needed more time to pack & get their stuff out and would we be so kind to let them live there for one more week. We were young naive first time home owners so we said uhh…ok. We had our apartment through the end of the month so we didn't *have* to move that day, but in my area it's pretty customary to move in directly after closing.

Anyway, we said fine, but we had to start moving boxes in because we were so eager to move. So for a week we and this other family had joint access to the (OUR) house. We had a little corner of the dining room where we piled up our stuff, out of the way of their chaos as they finished packing up. It was really awkward. Looking back, people have said we should have charged them rent for that week. But they were staying in the community and it's a small town, so we didn't want to create bad blood.

The funny part is, that family is a twice per year attendee at our church and a couple of times I tried to say hi to the mom and she was not friendly to me. Either she didn't remember me, or she's just a jerk.

My previous owners tried to do this and I wasn't even willing to consider rent back (which is becoming very common in my area's very tight market) because of liability.  So when we pull up after getting the keys the were still packing.  And you know if they were packing they hadn't cleaned. My huscat offered to help them load and they refused his help. He wasn't offering to be nice, you assholes, he was asking to speed it up! I raised such a stink with their realtor, who tried to pull a "nothing I can do!" after just earning a 5 figure commission that she paid for 2 full days of house cleaning and gave us a gift card for 2 nights at the Hilton.  We still had our old house, so that was helpful for our next vacation.  My realtor checked in with us often between acceptace and closing to see if we needed any help or referrals for movers, so while she couldn't force them, she could've facilitated.

 

August 1, 2014
6:56 pm
avatar
Stone throwing mega b***h
Expert Hamcat
Meows: 345
Snarking Since:
August 15, 2013

Oh man, we made our sellers leave $5K in escrow because our contract said "broom clean" and the upstairs, basement and garage were still filled with junk. We gave them two weeks, and boy if that 5K on the line didn't motivate them!

I wish we found a powder room, but we can't all be that lucky…

We bought a 90 year old house where they converted the attic to a second floor with a bathroom and three bedrooms. We had the electrical redone before we moved in, and it was a mess. The box was upside down, running in all crqzy directions – we had to patch a million holes in the walls and ceiling as the electricians struggled to find the wires.

When they added the full stairs to the second floor (which are way too steep for code) the underside of those stairs were too low for the basement door to clear. Instead of switching the door to open into the kitchen, they cut off the top corner of my beautiful 1922 wood door. sangry

Instead of ripping out old carpet, they just kept laying new carpet over old. Our bedroom had two layers of carpet, laminate flooring, and then a full-room area rug on top of that. On the plus side, the hardwood floors we uncovered are in great shape!

We have a three season room off the back. They took out one of the posts holding it up and placed a jack under the stairs instead. The whole thing sags and the door to our backyard doesn't open, but mama needs more money before that gets fixed.

August 1, 2014
9:18 pm
avatar
SCC
Feline Porklord
Meows: 4585
Snarking Since:
October 18, 2012

RegionalThing said

Matching Adult Sized Care Bear Undies said

I guess my biggest wtf moment had to do with buying our first house not diy. At the closing the lady said she & her family needed more time to pack & get their stuff out and would we be so kind to let them live there for one more week. We were young naive first time home owners so we said uhh…ok. We had our apartment through the end of the month so we didn't *have* to move that day, but in my area it's pretty customary to move in directly after closing.

Anyway, we said fine, but we had to start moving boxes in because we were so eager to move. So for a week we and this other family had joint access to the (OUR) house. We had a little corner of the dining room where we piled up our stuff, out of the way of their chaos as they finished packing up. It was really awkward. Looking back, people have said we should have charged them rent for that week. But they were staying in the community and it's a small town, so we didn't want to create bad blood.

The funny part is, that family is a twice per year attendee at our church and a couple of times I tried to say hi to the mom and she was not friendly to me. Either she didn't remember me, or she's just a jerk.

My previous owners tried to do this and I wasn't even willing to consider rent back (which is becoming very common in my area's very tight market) because of liability.  So when we pull up after getting the keys the were still packing.  And you know if they were packing they hadn't cleaned. My huscat offered to help them load and they refused his help. He wasn't offering to be nice, you assholes, he was asking to speed it up! I raised such a stink with their realtor, who tried to pull a "nothing I can do!" after just earning a 5 figure commission that she paid for 2 full days of house cleaning and gave us a gift card for 2 nights at the Hilton.  We still had our old house, so that was helpful for our next vacation.  My realtor checked in with us often between acceptace and closing to see if we needed any help or referrals for movers, so while she couldn't force them, she could've facilitated.

 

Both these things happened to me. I didnt have a realtor involved either time.

First house was a townhouse and seller was having a new town house built. She called me a few weeks before closing and informed me she would not be moving out until 2 weeks after closing because her new place was not ready. I said ok  and hung up the phone. Then I called her back and said she needed to pay me 1/2 of the mortgage and condo fee for that month if she wanted to stay for 2 weeks and she agreed. Then, the day when we were supposed to move, she called (it was a Friday) and said she needed one more day. I said no, my truck was packed and I was moving in. She b***hed about it a bit and was there for a little while when I was moving in. I told her to move her stuff out to the lawn, I was a bit pissed by then. A lot of her friends were there eating pizza, drinking and drunk. I ordered them out to the front lawn too.

When I moved into this house, the previous owners were not moved out at time of closing, like I thought they would be and they did not tell us at closing that day. So, I pull up with the moving trucks and the husband is still moving out, then just sits down in the front yard and has his lunch before finishing moving the rest out. I invited him inside to eat and gave him the side eye a little and then he felt bad and apologized. It felt so weird moving stuff into my house with their stuff still in it, I felt like I was intruding on him. 

**Leading By Example**
August 1, 2014
11:05 pm
avatar
Estelle Costanza
Hamcat
Meows: 112
Snarking Since:
April 29, 2012

We bought our 120 year old row home from a lady with 4 cats and questionable mental health.  We did our final walk through the day of settlement and she still had a bunch of stuff in the house, including the cats.  During the final walk through, we discovered a hole in the hardwood floor in the closet of one of the 3rd floor bedrooms that had been covered with a box (along with several other red flags, but we were idiots). When we left after the walk through, we apparently left the door to the 3rd floor open not knowing that the cats were never allowed up there.  We closed on the house and one of the cats had snuck through the hole in the floor and ended up getting trapped.  The prior owner was at once flippant and distraught, she told us that finding a cat skeleton in your walls was good luck and that she had a friend that had found one and after removing it, her husband left her. She also distributed what looked like ransom notes throughout the neighborhood alerting everyone of a lost cat.  I finally ended up calling a local rescue to set up a humane trap and we got the damn thing out of the floor after about a week.

The seller was leaving because she was basically just about to lose the house and she did NOT want to go.   We had a few weeks of overlap before moving it to repaint, get everything moved and clean and during the first week our area was hit with a tropical storm that caused terrible flooding. Our rental, about a mile away from the new house was flooded badly and the whole area, including  the new place and the seller's new apartment, was evacuated.  She called me in tears asking me if she could "camp out" in the home for the week until she was allowed back.  I totally lost my shit and had to have my husband tell her no- last thing we needed was for another cat to get lost!  Plus there was no gas or electric service in this section of the city anyway.  

The house has plenty of other issues that we have discovered, probably not all her fault- including: the main drain from the toilet leaking in the pantry in the kitchen, disguised with wrapping paper; painted over wallpaper in nearly every room; questionable electric; a roof leak (which we discovered as she was picking up her trapped cat, I could have strangled her…) a non-funtioning, leaking gas stove and kitchen cabinets that weren't attached to studs.  

My favorite talking point of the house was the fairy garden on the side, complete with a brass bell and plaque that read "home of tinkerbelle".  The bell was gone when we moved in but I just recently realized that the brass plaque, which had been secured to the brick with masonry screws, is also gone, after nearly 4 years!  Either someone stole it for scrap or she was mad that we let the fairy garden go…

 

I have so many stories to tell about this house but some of the other posters are definitely making me feel better!

August 1, 2014
11:13 pm
avatar
RegionalThing
Hamcat
Meows: 104
Snarking Since:
May 16, 2014

Can I share a happy move in? When I bought my condo, the previous owners left a bottle of wine, a bottle of water, full toilet paper and paper towel rolls on the holders, cookies, a treat for my dog and a note that the cleaning lady had been that morning.

August 2, 2014
4:42 pm
avatar
White Sharpie Paint Pen
Cat
Meows: 16
Snarking Since:
March 3, 2014

RegionalThing said

Can I share a happy move in? When I bought my condo, the previous owners left a bottle of wine, a bottle of water, full toilet paper and paper towel rolls on the holders, cookies, a treat for my dog and a note that the cleaning lady had been that morning.

That is lovely. And proves there are still classy people left in the world.

August 2, 2014
8:31 pm
avatar
Miss Anne Thrope
Feline Porklord
Meows: 1443
Snarking Since:
May 23, 2012

While ripping out our grungy 80's bathroom, our contractor found a live outlet wedged between the floor joists under the shower.  We're still scratching our heads over that one.

 

The most WTF part of the home was actually the yard where the avid DIYers installed a "zen garden".  That's in quotes because I'm pretty certain that a true zen garden does not involve 5 inches of concrete raked into concentric circles with giant boulders concreted in for added effect.  It took a jackhammer to remove the damned thing.

 

Finally, I knew when my realtor sent me pics of the house that they must read YHL based solely on the f**king pops of color in every. single. room.  My belief was confirmed when I saw a copy of their book on the living room table.  I am still trying to block out how much money we had to pay in primer.

**appropriating horticultures since September 2015**
August 2, 2014
9:49 pm
avatar
Estelle Costanza
Hamcat
Meows: 112
Snarking Since:
April 29, 2012

DIY Girl-  I looked at your blog and I am in love with your house.  Best of luck as you renovate that place!!

August 2, 2014
10:58 pm
avatar
Matching Adult Sized Care Bear Undies
Senior Hamcat
Meows: 961
Snarking Since:
March 6, 2013

Miss Anne Thrope said
The most WTF part of the home was actually the yard where the avid DIYers installed a "zen garden".  That's in quotes because I'm pretty certain that a true zen garden does not involve 5 inches of concrete raked into concentric circles with giant boulders concreted in for added effect.  It took a jackhammer to remove the damned thing.

The irony of this is making me lmao. What the…!

Cheetah will let her displeasure be known.
August 2, 2014
11:15 pm
avatar
WheresMyCoffee
Hamprince of Meowtonia
Meows: 7317
Snarking Since:
December 4, 2012

White Sharpie Paint Pen said

RegionalThing said

Can I share a happy move in? When I bought my condo, the previous owners left a bottle of wine, a bottle of water, full toilet paper and paper towel rolls on the holders, cookies, a treat for my dog and a note that the cleaning lady had been that morning.

That is lovely. And proves there are still classy people left in the world.

When we moved into this home (our first) the previous owner left a note on the kitchen counter with all the paperwork for the house/appliances/extra knobs, keys etc… The note was really sweet. She apologized for not having left the house clean and left her cleaning supplies in the upstairs bathroom. (The house was basically spotless)

Its the little things.

August 3, 2014
5:19 am
avatar
Thesaurused Homosexual
Cat
Meows: 46
Snarking Since:
October 24, 2013

In our former apartment, the tenants before us had decided to re-paint the bathroom, and I still don't know WTF kind of paint they used. Part of it had already come off, the rest stuck to walls and ceiling no matter what we did. When my huscat tried to scrape some of the paint off, parts of the ceiling came down and left us with a weirdly coloured crater landscape. My brother actually took a picture of it and declared it modern art.

 

The walls were a story for themselves. In some places they were so hard you couldn't get a nail in, while in other places the nail would just break out of the wall and take a huge chunk of it with it. And don't ask me about insulation. If there was any, it was not very effective when it got colder.

 

The kitchen was positively tiny. It didn't even have an actual door, just a sliding door. The owner had provided a set of cupboards and other appliances, and we ended up putting the largest cupboard into the living room because it just. didn't. fit.

 

Our previous tenants also seemed to have a thing for changing the flooring in… creative ways. In the living room, they had put laminate directly over the carpet, with the result that the door didn't close any more. They had also tiled the balcony without evening out the floor first, so every time there was some stronger rain, we ended up with a little lake right in the center of our balcony. sangry

-formerly Protein powder for brains-
August 3, 2014
8:57 pm
avatar
Possible Future Nursery
Cat
Meows: 38
Snarking Since:
July 24, 2013

Wow. Mine is nowhere near as bad as some of you hamcats have/had it!

I'm neurotic about unpacking. I started as soon as the moving truck was unloaded. One drawer in the upstairs bath was FILLED with the previous owner's prescription medication – 2 years out of date.

Someone installed an indoor outlet OUTSIDE (now see below).

I have gutters to nowhere. They snake up the side of the building and stop just short of the roof. There's no gutter on the roofline, which means it drips on the back porch all of the time, creating puddles along the wall/floor line, which conveniently was not caulked, causing an impressive, expansive growth of black mold all along the inside wall behind my couch (all outside issues are supposed to be taken care of by the HOA. My guess is they've been missing since the '04 hurricanes).

And for some reason, every one of our outlets is loose and barely holds a plug and half of the wall switches don't actually do anything. I should probably let my landlord know about that.

On a happy note, I have wonderful landlords who fix every issue either that day or the next. One time, we were getting a new water heater (it died a spectacular death, noticed only by the water gushing down from the attic access), and my landlord stopped by before he went to Home Depot to get a new one. He noticed the kitchen faucet wasn't very good, so he picked up a gorgeous new one for us.



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