Etiquette Hell

A Civil World. Off-topic discussions on a variety of topics. Guests, register for forum membership to see all the boards. => Humor Me! => Topic started by: TeamBhakta on September 10, 2011, 12:20:33 PM

Title: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 10, 2011, 12:20:33 PM
I was looking at houses for sale online. One house would have been gorgeous, except the owners had a particular icon all over the house. It was a little eyeless character that resembled a gingerbread man. I don't know if they made him up, he's a famous carton or even a religious / political icon I've never heard of. Eyeless Gingerbread Man was in every.single.room. The dining room had a mirror hung up. All the way around the mirror, painted on the wall, were 2 foot tall rows of Eyeless Gingerbread Men holding hands and screaming.

What oddities have you all spotted while house hunting ?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: CakeBeret on September 10, 2011, 12:36:08 PM
When we first began house hunting, we came upon a listing for a home that advertised, among other things, a roof in excellent condition. We went to the house and since it was unoccupied, walked around the house. The roof in front was, indeed, in very nice condition. However, in the rear of the house, literally half the roof was missing. Just...gone. Someone had tried to cover it with a tarp, but the damage was extensive. So now we joke about obviously broken or flawed things being in "excellent condition".
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Tierrainney on September 10, 2011, 01:13:48 PM
Excellent condition, huh? Sounds like the object I collect and frequently find at antique stores labeled as being in excellent condition even though half the paint is missing and there are scratches all over it.  ;D


One house I toured when looking to move had shag carpeting in every room. A different color in every room. The best was the bedroom with pink shag, and green and pink walls and ceilings. It felt like being inside a watermelon. I did like the one bedroom with blue shag carpeting and wallpapers with blue and white paper with rubber duckies.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Piratelvr1121 on September 10, 2011, 01:32:49 PM
Our house had "Spirit of 76" wallpaper in the living room when we first moved in.  It's painted over now but I thought it was pretty funny.

Another house we looked at had a furnace in the basement that gave me flashbacks of Sweeney Todd, and another one we peeked into (didn't even go into the house) had parts of the ceiling resting on the floor.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: White Dragon on September 10, 2011, 04:40:28 PM
Some things always make me go  ??? when I'm house hunting.

The first is family homes with carpeted eating areas. Seriously? Judging by the bedrooms, there are toddlers in the home.
Carpets? Under the chairs? Hope they own a rug cleaner!

The other one is carpeted bathrooms. By this I mean shag carpeting everywhere, even around the commode.
Splashed biologicals on carpet and no way to clean it?
Eww. Just...eww.

My favourite was an acreage we wanted to check out. The realtor looked at us oddly and said "Do you like trains?" in what I can only describe as a psychoticly cheery tone.
Turns out there was a train track about 50 feet from the front door.
A bit too close for me, thanks.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zenith on September 11, 2011, 02:00:25 AM
The reactions to a wallpaper in my grandparents house when it was being sold. Having grown up in the house I'd never really noticed it and no one else in the family had either, it was in a little used craft room. They were 1 inch high little black stick figures on a white background dancing around little stick fires. Doesn't sound bad but they were stick figures of both genders and they were quite graphic and realistic about which genders they were. I mean really graphic, certain things round and third err legs included. I think my grandmother had a cheeky sense of humor as that room was her personal craft room. I wonder where she found the wallpaper.

When we were first told about it by an eagle eye potential buyer there was a bit of a uproar about what to do about it. In the end it was left alone but dang it was funny. 30 years and no one had noticed. Wish I had a picture. Apparently it was the first thing to go when the new owners took possession.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on September 11, 2011, 05:35:07 AM
Not me personally, but when a few friends of mine were looking for a student house, they discovered a toilet in a very odd place.

In the bathroom, there was an empty space where the toilet should have been. The pipes were there, just no actual toilet. The toilet was in the garden, and filled with earth, with a basil plant in the bowl.

Apparently, the landlord (who was showing them round) was just as surprised as they were. The funniest thing though, was that (rather than being incandescently furious), the landlord was more impressed that they'd managed  to get the toilet through the house and into the garden in one piece!!! Still, no idea why they'd done it.

(And no, my friends didn't take that one)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: amanda_tlg on September 11, 2011, 06:30:41 AM
With my DH being a general contractor he gets called in when people buy a new house and it has a feature that *has* to go. There's only two that come to my mind immediately, but he's told be about dozens of others

The first was the house where the entire downstairs had really nice crown molding that went through each room, hall, etc. Apparently it was stained a lovely color and would have looked nice....but it had been installed 6 inches below the ceiling....and upside down

The second was a gorgeous house that had been custom built by the original owner. I actually got to see this one myself when DH went in to work on it when the 2nd owner bought it. The house was absolutely beautiful. Except there was a minor (  :o ) design flaw, somebody had goofed. You could only get to the kitchen through the garage or by walking through a half bathroom. He fixed it. THEN the house was awesome.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hermanne on September 11, 2011, 06:48:48 AM
My parents' house where I grew up had bright Christmasy red carpet and red flocked wallpaper. They couldn't afford to replace it when they moved in, so my early childhood memories involved playing dolls on the floor of Dante's Inferno.

The houses DH and I saw while we were house-hunting were pretty normal, but the smells. One place, they had a dog and the owner was cooking something tomato-based on the stove. That would've been kind of okay, except the owner also had a blueberry scented candle lit. Not a good combo.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: amanda_tlg on September 11, 2011, 07:09:57 AM
My parents' house where I grew up had bright Christmasy red carpet and red flocked wallpaper. They couldn't afford to replace it when they moved in, so my early childhood memories involved playing dolls on the floor of Dante's Inferno.

*snorf*

*Note to self, do not eat yogurt and read ehell*
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: phred246 on September 11, 2011, 07:12:19 AM
When my brother and his wife were house hunting years ago, they were shown a custom built house that had not been finished before the owners were transferred out of state...I saw it...It was round, had a domed roof, no doors or windows, and was painted bright orange! It fell down during a major storm sometime later!

The house they did buy had zebra stripe curtains, bright red carpeting, and the back yard had fallen leaves that had been there for years.

The house that my wife and I bought in 1994 had a kitchen with yellow and silver metallic wallpaper and a yellow window blind, a bedroom with Victorian advertisement wallpaper, and bright green shag rug everywhere. We found out after we bought...a major basement leak, illegal plumbing, and shoddy electrical work. When we sold it in February, we discovered that the previous owners had made extensive renovations (part of the reason we bought the place) without benefit of city building permits/inspections. I had to quickly make a diagram of all three floors and get zoning/building approvals for $XXX five days before the sale. That explained why I had never gotten a copy of the CO that I requested after I discovered it was missing from the stack of paperwork from the purchase!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: shadowfox79 on September 11, 2011, 07:18:36 AM
The first house DH and I looked at was a converted shop with a "roof terrace", something that sounded quite impressive in an area of terraced houses in Leeds.

The first thing we saw was the extremely narrow and tight spiral staircase coming up from the centre of the living room into the ceiling. This was the only way to get upstairs from the inside. You may well ask how on earth anyone was supposed to, say, get a bed up there? Well, that was where the roof terrace came in. The main bedroom (which was just large enough for a double bed, if you didn't mind it hitting the wall on both sides) opened out onto the roof of the kitchen, which had had a set of steps attached at the side. Presumably we were expected to clamber up there with a flatpack and a mattress.

But that wasn't all.

From the moment we walked in we could see the discoloration on the kitchen walls, and once we were upstairs the problem was obvious. The drainage on the kitchen roof hadn't been set up properly, so the roof terrace was full of water which was seeping into the walls. It wasn't so much a terrace as a paddling pool.

We turned it down, and it was still for sale last time I saw it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zilla on September 11, 2011, 08:04:51 AM
We just saw a house in excellent and restored condition.  Restored to the 1970's that is. 


Orange shag carpeting, avocado green stove, burgundy fridge, and on and on.  When confronted with, the realtor said, "Yes it is restored by hiring a maid for a deep cleaning.  Everything is in excellent condition."


Um no thank you and we left.  A year and half later the house is still for sale and still in excellent  restored condition.


(in case people think,those can be changed out.  The pricing on the house was comparable to the houses in the same street that had hardwood floors, granite counters in kitchens with chef appliances and the price was firm, not negotiable)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Shopaholic on September 11, 2011, 08:18:53 AM
This is pretty small compared to the other stuff on here - but my BIL and SIL's kitchen has room only for a small counter-top dishwasher. Which sits in an small alcove that juts out from the side of the building, like A/C's do... really bizarre. Apparently the house came that way. The alcove is exactly the size of the dishwasher.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: mamakinz on September 11, 2011, 08:37:31 AM
When we were starting to look for a house, we saw:
A beautiful 1800's farmhouse with a huge family room addition - the weird feature - a huge hot tub in the family room!!
A home that was a Tavern in the 1700's that still had the original tavern door in the kitchen (that was more cool than wierd)
The house we bought - had "lovely" fruit wallpaper on the kitchen walls


Weird stuff in houses my parents actually bought-
The row house in Philadelphia - circa 1971, one of the dining room walls was wallpapered with aluminum foil (like from a roll of reynolds wrap) shiny side out
The house in NJ - the wall by the front door was covered in wood shake siding (like you would have on the outside of your house)
One wall in the living room, and one wall in the kitchen was covered in cork tiles, brown/orange shag tile in the family room, carpet in the main bathroom and in the kitchen. They bought the house in the '90's and it looked like it was decorated in the 60's - we nicknamed it the "brady bunch house" cuz that's what it reminded us of!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on September 11, 2011, 08:42:56 AM
There was this lovely Cape Cod with an addition I looked at. Well, lovely from the outside. On the inside, on the ground floor of the main part of the house, they had removed all the interior walls. It was just one big open space, with a square of vinyl flooring in the corner where the kitchen was, and carpeting over the rest of the floor. They had removed the stairs, and you had to go into the addition to get upstairs. And the new stairs opened into the only bathroom in the house. So to get up to the bedrooms, you had no choice but to walk through the bathroom.

It was just odd. At first I thought that perhaps someone with a physical disability had remodeled the house, but there were no other signs of handicapped adaptations anywhere.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on September 11, 2011, 10:03:32 AM
There was a fancy pushbutton lock on the outside of the master bedroom...

(Turns out it was an older owner who liked to go on trips.  She'd lock her bedroom before she left)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on September 11, 2011, 11:42:05 AM
When I was house hunting for the house I'm in now, I toured a number of brand new townhouses.  Not only were they typical townhouses in that the rooms were really small, because they were new, the basements weren't finished.  In one of the houses, the exposed two by fours were visibly warped and full of knots.  I couldn't help thinking that if these were the ones they left exposed, what did the ones in the walls look like?  One of the other houses, in addition to the two by four issue, had an obvious structural issue with the basement stairs for which they'd attempted a very poor fix.

So not really weird features but more 'What the heck were the builder's thinking?'
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on September 11, 2011, 11:49:56 AM
Maybe a pseudo-rustic, pseudo-industrial hybrid? Otherwise, I got zip.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 11, 2011, 11:54:25 AM
There was this lovely Cape Cod with an addition I looked at. Well, lovely from the outside. On the inside, on the ground floor of the main part of the house, they had removed all the interior walls. It was just one big open space, with a square of vinyl flooring in the corner where the kitchen was, and carpeting over the rest of the floor. They had removed the stairs, and you had to go into the addition to get upstairs. And the new stairs opened into the only bathroom in the house. So to get up to the bedrooms, you had no choice but to walk through the bathroom.

It was just odd. At first I thought that perhaps someone with a physical disability had remodeled the house, but there were no other signs of handicapped adaptations anywhere.

My best friend in junior high had something like that. The only way into her parents' bedroom was through the bathroom. So awkward to walk into the bathroom at 1 am, notice two heads pop up and realize "Oh crap, shut the door! Geez, good thing I looked around first. Why didn't anyone tell me this ?  >:( "  Worst bathroom design ever.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Lisbeth on September 11, 2011, 11:55:04 AM
When my parents bought their last house, one of the bedrooms had been fixed up for a small boy and had a sports-themed streamer of wallpaper around the tops of the walls under the ceiling.  As I had just started college when they moved, and was living in the dorms at that time, they made that my bedroom as well as their study. 

It took a fire in the house to get that wallpaper removed when it was being rebuilt.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 11, 2011, 12:13:20 PM
I had a mid-60s lakefront house in FL. It had a built-in cutting board in the kitchen with the zodiac signs on it. Weird but kind of cool at the same time. Because it was our vacation home we had fun decorating on the cheap w/vintage stuff. I bought a real malt shop mixer (with 3 "stations"), a 50s linoleum-topped dinerish table for the kitchen and vintage swag lamps for the living area.

I had to sell the place during the divorce and I still miss it terribly.

I almost bought a NJ place that, while the house was built in 1885, its basement was from the 1930s That was a puzzle until I learned that the house likely had been moved in order to make way for the building of the Garden State Parkway.

Edited to fix error.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: White Dragon on September 11, 2011, 01:21:10 PM
A friend of mine bought a house with an...interesting...paint scheme.

The downstairs bathroom was done in weathered-wood "barn board" on three sides. The door was in vertical, black and white stripes.
Apparently, it was like being in a old west jail.

The main room downstairs was white.
With red splatters.
Kind of an 'abattoir' effect.

She painted. A lot.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on September 11, 2011, 01:26:59 PM
A house I lived in for 1 year in grade school.  The upstairs bathroom had 2 doors, one to the master bedroom and 1 to my brothers' bedroom.  To get to that bathroom I had to walk through my brothers' room. 

Another house I lived in as a kid had a window over the kitchen sink that looked into the family room.  The family room had been added after the house was built and they didn't bother to remove that window.

A house where the owner proudly pointed out that the masterbedroom had an overlook into the living room.  In fact the overlook was only about 6 inches wide - too narrow to see anything, but wide enough that noise and light from the night owl downstairs would disturb someone trying to sleep upstairs.

A house with a cathedral celling in the living room.  The upstairs master bedroom had a window looking into that space.  It let the parents check up on young children without getting out of bed, but for an older couple it would be weird.

A house where the laundry room had doors to both the interior of the house and to outside.  That makes it a great mud room.  But there was a toilet in the room with no walls surrounding it.  Maybe usefull but definitely odd. 

House with an attached garage but no door between the house and garage.   
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: HorseFreak on September 11, 2011, 01:30:04 PM
My favourite was an acreage we wanted to check out. The realtor looked at us oddly and said "Do you like trains?" in what I can only describe as a psychoticly cheery tone.
Turns out there was a train track about 50 feet from the front door.
A bit too close for me, thanks.

I looked at a piece of property (not seriously, just peeked in the windows since it was vacant for years and looked at the website) that was really convenient to school. Unfortunately, two sets of train tracks were 15' directly behind the second floor bedroom window and a commuter train went by several times per day + many commercial trains. It also required a new roof and septic tank, but there was literally NOWHERE to put it as the tracks were on a mound that made up the back border of the property. It was doubtful one could even tear down the existing tiny house and rebuild legally since the whole property was teeny tiny and extended no more than 10' beyond each wall.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 11, 2011, 01:32:18 PM
A house I lived in for 1 year in grade school.  The upstairs bathroom had 2 doors, one to the master bedroom and 1 to my brothers' bedroom.  To get to that bathroom I had to walk through my brothers' room. 

Another house I lived in as a kid had a window over the kitchen sink that looked into the family room.  The family room had been added after the house was built and they didn't bother to remove that window.

A house where the owner proudly pointed out that the masterbedroom had an overlook into the living room.  In fact the overlook was only about 6 inches wide - too narrow to see anything, but wide enough that noise and light from the night owl downstairs would disturb someone trying to sleep upstairs.

A house with a cathedral celling in the living room.  The upstairs master bedroom had a window looking into that space.  It let the parents check up on young children without getting out of bed, but for an older couple it would be weird.

A house where the laundry room had doors to both the interior of the house and to outside.  That makes it a great mud room.  But there was a toilet in the room with no walls surrounding it.  Maybe usefull but definitely odd. 

House with an attached garage but no door between the house and garage.

Sophia Petrillo is in my head saying "You're a genius! I walk into the laundry room, and there's a toilet in front of the washer-dryer. It's an old lady's dream come true!"

One place we saw was completely done in animal print.  From walls to rugs, every sofa, chairs, bedroom sets and shower curtains were some sort of animal print.  The only thing I know that was not was the toilet and kitchen appliances.  It was frightening.

Then there was the mystery room house.  It was listed as 3/2, but none of us could find the master bedroom and bath.  We thought it was listed incorrectly.  We found it on the way out.  When the front door was open, it completely hid the doorway and there was kind of an optical illusion from the outside where you couldn't really determine the depth of the house.  It was strange.

One of my bedroom doors (well, I use it for a tv room) has a folding closet door to the right of it. Yep, when you open the bedroom door, it scratches up the closet door if you don't know about it. The bedroom door has to be locked while going through the closet. Otherwise it turns into one person opening the door and the person in the closet getting whacked by the door  ::)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dazi on September 11, 2011, 01:36:58 PM
One place we saw was completely done in animal print.  From walls to rugs, every sofa, chairs, bedroom sets and shower curtains were some sort of animal print.  The only thing I know that was not was the toilet and kitchen appliances.  It was frightening.

Then there was the mystery room house.  It was listed as 3/2, but none of us could find the master bedroom and bath.  We thought it was listed incorrectly.  We found it on the way out.  When the front door was open, it completely hid the doorway and there was kind of an optical illusion from the outside where you couldn't really determine the depth of the house.  It was strange. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zilla on September 11, 2011, 02:02:01 PM
There was a fancy pushbutton lock on the outside of the master bedroom...

(Turns out it was an older owner who liked to go on trips.  She'd lock her bedroom before she left)


I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???


So um yeah we didn't stay too long.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lipli on September 11, 2011, 02:27:51 PM
My dad bought a house.  The previous owner apparently loved the color white.  Her entire living room was white - walls, carpet, furniture.  It was very creepy. But, that wasn't the odd part.  The "public" bathroom had pepto-pink tiles and cartoony frog and lily pad wall paper.  It was bizarre especially given the vanilla ice cream theme of the living room.  My dad ripped out the carpets (had awesome hardwood floors through out) and painted the rooms light colors.  But we kept the frog bathroom. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: The Legend of Daisy on September 11, 2011, 02:42:22 PM
I was looking at houses for sale online. One house would have been gorgeous, except the owners had a particular icon all over the house. It was a little eyeless character that resembled a gingerbread man. I don't know if they made him up, he's a famous carton or even a religious / political icon I've never heard of. Eyeless Gingerbread Man was in every.single.room. The dining room had a mirror hung up. All the way around the mirror, painted on the wall, were 2 foot tall rows of Eyeless Gingerbread Men holding hands and screaming.

Please post the link. Pretty please?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on September 11, 2011, 02:46:43 PM
My parents' house where I grew up had bright Christmasy red carpet and red flocked wallpaper. They couldn't afford to replace it when they moved in, so my early childhood memories involved playing dolls on the floor of Dante's Inferno.

*snorf*

*Note to self, do not eat yogurt and read ehell*

I went into the ladies' room of a church at which my band was singing.  The carpet was red shag.  The walls were covered in red, gold, and white striped flocked wallpaper.  The lampshades were red, gold, and white to match the wallpaper, and were very frilly and ruffly.  There was a huge gold-framed mirror on one wall.  It looked for all the world like a bordello's waiting room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wyozozo on September 11, 2011, 02:47:41 PM
Quote
They couldn't afford to replace it when they moved in, so my early childhood memories involved playing dolls on the floor of Dante's Inferno.
So wasn't what I was thinking!  >:D
I thought maybe Barbie went into the "entertainment business"!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: pwv on September 11, 2011, 02:50:47 PM
I used to live in an efficiency apartment where you had to go through the walk=in closet to get to the bathroom.   Said bathroom was in  yellow; three different shades of yellow:  tub/sink/commode vs. wall tile vs. floor tile.  The stove was brown and the fridge and metal cabinets were painted a sort of aqua/turquoise.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on September 11, 2011, 02:51:37 PM
I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

I once babysat for a family who did this. They told me over and over again to make sure the doors were locked when I put them to bed. The two kids (aged 3 and 5) weren't even allowed to go to the bathroom in the night - they were both still in nappies. It made me feel a little bit sick, to be honest, and I didn't babysit for them again.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on September 11, 2011, 03:02:52 PM
I bought a house in the early '90s that had one bedroom sponge-painted bright pink. (Plus avocado green shag carpeting through most of the house). I got rid of the carpeting to uncover golden-oak hardwood in perfect condition.

The pink grew on me, though. I not only kept it, I bought a pink oriental carpet at a thrift store to go with!

ETA: when we fixed the place up to get tenants, it turned out to be painted wallpaper, and took three days to strip. The room is beige now. I still miss the pink.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kherbert05 on September 11, 2011, 03:08:56 PM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LazyDaisy on September 11, 2011, 05:04:49 PM
The first was the house where the entire downstairs had really nice crown molding that went through each room, hall, etc. Apparently it was stained a lovely color and would have looked nice....but it had been installed 6 inches below the ceiling....and upside down

I've seen some DIY decorating shows where they actually encourage people to do this to make the ceilings "look taller." Sometimes when I see those shows I just go  ??? by their suggestions.

In the 80s my parents bought a brand new house with carpeting in the bathrooms, right up to the shower and tub and around the toilet; it was not previously owned so it was designed like this by the builder. It actually took them about 10 years to finally get around to putting in tile instead.


edited to add a missing word
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Maggie on September 11, 2011, 05:08:22 PM
Well I guess the house I live in now might qualify.  It was built in 1947 by the government as base housing.  It has what I think are oak floors.  For some really weird reason that I cannot even comprehend, they painted these beautiful floors dark brown :(  The reason I know what they are underneath is that they used acrylic paint which peels anytime you move furniture or anything else across it.  It's sad and I'm hoping to sand them and bring them back someday!
 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RingTailedLemur on September 11, 2011, 05:47:29 PM
The first was the house where the entire downstairs had really nice crown molding that went through each room, hall, etc. Apparently it was stained a lovely color and would have looked nice....but it had been installed 6 inches below the ceiling....and upside down

I've seen some DIY decorating shows where they actually encourage people to do this to make the ceilings "look taller." Sometimes when I see those shows I just go  ??? by their suggestions.

In the 80s my parents bought a brand new house with carpeting in the bathrooms, right up to the shower and tub and around the toilet; it was not previously owned so it was designed like this by the builder. It actually took them about 10 years to finally get around to putting in tile instead.


edited to add a missing word

It never would have struck me that carpeting in the bathroom was particularly unusual.

The house I grew up in, my brother had to walk through my room to get to his so I couldn't get any privacy from him and his friends (not even while sleeping or changing).
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: MorgnsGrl on September 11, 2011, 07:42:19 PM
Then there was the mystery room house.  It was listed as 3/2, but none of us could find the master bedroom and bath.  We thought it was listed incorrectly.  We found it on the way out.  When the front door was open, it completely hid the doorway and there was kind of an optical illusion from the outside where you couldn't really determine the depth of the house.  It was strange.

We saw a house like that! It was the den/sitting room that was mysteriously hidden when you opened the front door. Also, the only bathroom in the house was off the kitchen and strangely enormous. It was like this big, empty room with a shower stall and toilet and sink. So weird.

Then there was the one-level home that was completely carpeted throughout. Not with one color, though. Not even with one color for each room. No, the owners had apparently decided that the best (or possibly cheapest?) way to carpet the house would be to get small scraps of carpet in various colors and textures, then SEW THEM TOGETHER. It was like a big patchwork puzzle carpet. We couldn't even express our horror because the owners were present during our visit, so we had to plaster on wide smiles and say nice things...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on September 11, 2011, 08:12:32 PM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
:o Was this in Maryland?  Our realtor told us about a Pink house somewhere in this area where everything was pink.  Walls, rugs, exterior -- even the appliances had been overpainted with pink.   And the sellers insisted on a covenant with prospective buyers that they wouldn't change anything.  It was on the market for years, even though much of that time was a seller's market.

Re pink rooms: my MIL's guest room was pink.  No, that doesn't do it justice.  Nor does grabbing the unfortunate bystander by the lapels and shrieking "It's pink, I tell you, PINK!!!

It was (http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/p.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/i.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/n.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/k.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif) (http://glitter-graphics.com/myspace/text_generator.php).  Walls, carpeting, bedspread.  It was like trying to sleep in a giant Pepto-Bismol bottle.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on September 11, 2011, 08:16:10 PM
Then there was the one-level home that was completely carpeted throughout. Not with one color, though. Not even with one color for each room. No, the owners had apparently decided that the best (or possibly cheapest?) way to carpet the house would be to get small scraps of carpet in various colors and textures, then SEW THEM TOGETHER. It was like a big patchwork puzzle carpet. We couldn't even express our horror because the owners were present during our visit, so we had to plaster on wide smiles and say nice things...
That was a suggestion in one of the craft magazines in the 70's!!  I remember it because I thought it was so cool.  (In my defense, I was about 14.)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on September 11, 2011, 09:07:31 PM
The feature that sold us on our house was that it had it's own Narnia.  When they were digging out the daylight basement, someone wasn't paying attention.  They accidentally dug out an extra 300 square feet off of one of the bedrooms.  So there was a door in the closet to a big storage room.  Which we, of course, nicknamed Narnia.  ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Just Lori on September 11, 2011, 09:16:59 PM
When we were househunting, we checked out a house that had "all new carpeting in the basement."  We were looking for a finished basement, so this sounded promising.  We checked out the house and discovered a completely unfinished basement, save for the brand new carpeting on the floor.

My parents still live in the home where I grew up.  I was going over some pictures and saw a picture of my mother sitting in a room with gorgeous hardwood floors.  Looking closer, I realized it was their living room.  They took the picture when they pulled up the old carpeting and put down new carpeting.  Beautiful hardwood floors - covered by wall-to-wall carpeting.  Back in their day, only poor people had hardwood floors, and that mentality has stuck with them.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: CLD on September 11, 2011, 09:25:07 PM
I had a mid-60s lakefront house in FL. It had a built-in cutting board in the kitchen with the zodiac signs on it. Weird but kind of cool at the same time.

Ohh!!! My current house has one of those! 

It used to strike me as odd, but after 11 years, it seems normal.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kimblee on September 11, 2011, 09:32:28 PM
A friend of mine bought a house with an...interesting...paint scheme.

The downstairs bathroom was done in weathered-wood "barn board" on three sides. The door was in vertical, black and white stripes.
Apparently, it was like being in a old west jail.

The main room downstairs was white.
With red splatters.
Kind of an 'abattoir' effect.


She painted. A lot.

I would have totally kept this.

But then again, I'm the one who when asked what i wanted from my first house, told the asker that i wanted a "horror movie" bathroom. Rust stained walls and floor, chipped antique tub, cracked sink, etc.

When she pointed out that most people fix that before selling a house I shrugged and decided I'd just have to do the decorating myself.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kimblee on September 11, 2011, 09:34:30 PM
A house I lived in for 1 year in grade school.  The upstairs bathroom had 2 doors, one to the master bedroom and 1 to my brothers' bedroom.  To get to that bathroom I had to walk through my brothers' room. 

Another house I lived in as a kid had a window over the kitchen sink that looked into the family room.  The family room had been added after the house was built and they didn't bother to remove that window.

A house where the owner proudly pointed out that the masterbedroom had an overlook into the living room.  In fact the overlook was only about 6 inches wide - too narrow to see anything, but wide enough that noise and light from the night owl downstairs would disturb someone trying to sleep upstairs.

A house with a cathedral celling in the living room.  The upstairs master bedroom had a window looking into that space.  It let the parents check up on young children without getting out of bed, but for an older couple it would be weird.

A house where the laundry room had doors to both the interior of the house and to outside.  That makes it a great mud room.  But there was a toilet in the room with no walls surrounding it.  Maybe usefull but definitely odd. 

House with an attached garage but no door between the house and garage.

There was a house like that in the little town i used to live in. the owners hung shower curtains around it. Because that solves everything!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Rohanna on September 11, 2011, 09:37:35 PM
A fully functioning toilet in the middle of a completely unfinished basement. Just off of the attic bedroom of the same house, another bathroom with nothing but a 1/2 size "saloon" swinging door on it. We still call it the "peeping tom special" house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: KenveeB on September 11, 2011, 09:47:01 PM
One of the rooms in my house was hot pink below the chair rail, white and apple green stripes above.  They proudly told me about painting the red wall in the boy's bedroom before listing, WHY wouldn't they paint the garden room too?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 11, 2011, 09:53:03 PM
Strange bathrooms seem to be a theme.  We saw one that had a normal bathroom, and right next to it, a very small room with a toilet.  Just a toilet.  There was a toilet in the normal bathroom, too.  You'd think they could have fit a teeny tiny sink in there to make it a proper half bath!

The basement toilet that's barely concealed seems to be a theme.  My brother's house has one that's up against the wall of the house, and just has walls around two other sides, so the front is open (also no sink).  We also saw one that was in the middle of a basement, with little walls around it.  It reminded me of a phone booth.  I suppose it would be handy in a house with only one full bath, if you just really both had to go...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 11, 2011, 10:16:48 PM
When I was a kid I had some friends who owned a farm in the country as a second piece of property. The house was your typical late 19th c. midwestern farmhouse, kind of in bad shape but safe enough to explore. We had a lot of fun in there.

In a little room off the kitchen was an outhouse type of bathroom (no plumbing). There were 2 side-by-side holes in a wooden bench there. I can't imagine using the bathroom with someone sitting right there doing it, too!  :o
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zilla on September 11, 2011, 10:30:01 PM
My dad bought a house.  The previous owner apparently loved the color white.  Her entire living room was white - walls, carpet, furniture.  It was very creepy. But, that wasn't the odd part.  The "public" bathroom had pepto-pink tiles and cartoony frog and lily pad wall paper.  It was bizarre especially given the vanilla ice cream theme of the living room.  My dad ripped out the carpets (had awesome hardwood floors through out) and painted the rooms light colors.  But we kept the frog bathroom.


My grandfather and an ex stepmother both had white houses.  The entire house had white carpet with white walls and white shiny lucite furniture etc.  I remember growing up having to take off my shoes before entering the house and only allowed to have water. LOL  My kids had the same rules.


It wasn't creepy but nuts to me.  ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: twiggy on September 11, 2011, 11:00:41 PM
DH and I were househunting out of state, and we saw some awesome places.

1. The Story Book subdivision. All the streets were named after famous Disney characters. The house we looked at was on Cinderella Dr. So, in keeping with that theme, the popcorn ceiling had glitter mixed in with it. It was sparkly.

2. We looked at a gorgeous house with a finished MIL suite in the basement, granite countertops, brand new hardwood floors and appliances. It was so nice. There was a lovely, big shade tree in the front yard, the lawn was a decent size, and it was on a very quiet street. The drawback was that it backed up to a cemetery. The backyard was fenced in with 4' high chain link fencing, and there was a headstone less than 25' from the fence. When I saw the backyard I shrieked, and DH later told me that he would never live next to a cemetery. His reasoning is hilarious. Mind you, he knows that zombies aren't real, but just in case the dead emerge from their graves, he doesn't want to be the first one eaten.

3. One house had such an interesting color scheme. The living room was robin's egg blue, the kitchen was pepto pink, the bathroom was orange. There was another kitchen, bigger than the living room, in the basement, and it was painted canary yellow. But my favorite room in that house was the "red room". It was a teeny tiny bedroom (like 8x10) with vaulted celings, blood red shag carpet, red and black patterned wall paper halfway up, a black chair rail, and the rest of the wall was white with red "accents". It looked like someone had seen the DIY shows where you do textured painting in a paint a slightly different shade than the base paint, and you use a sponge, or wrap a t-shirt around the roller. The top half of the walls in this room looked like they were covered in blood spatter. We saw this house right before the cemetery house.

4. the house where the master bathroom had a huge window as one wall of the shower. That window opened to the unfenced side yard.

5. another house had a really akward 1/2 bath. The room was basically "C-shaped" with the door opening up at the bottom right of the C. There was a sink and a mirror, and at first glance it looked like that was it. There was a long hallway that was not immediately noticeable, and at the end of that hallway, there was a toilet in the top of the "C"

I know I have more, let me think about it. That was our out of state search. We ended up buying our house here in HomeTown almost a year ago. Luckily I know a realtor here, and he was able to sift through the listings so we didn't see as much "interesting" stuff.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: SisJackson on September 11, 2011, 11:51:48 PM
When DH and I were househunting we only saw one home that had a strange feature - the CHiPs room.  Does anyone else remember Ponch and Jon's far-out bachelor pad in Malibu?  Well, this place had a room with a fully-carpeted (shag) sunken pit with a conical fireplace in it and a corner bar.  It was funkadelic.  We actually thought it would be hilarious to own it but determined it was better to spend our money more practically.

I also went househunting with friends who were moving to the area, and one of the homes they looked at had been wallpapered to death.  Every room had two walls done in one pattern, and then a coordinating stripe was put up on the other two walls.  And the ceiling.  And inside each closet.  And then each light switch plate and outlet cover had wallpaper on it to match so that it was "hidden" in the wallpaper pattern.

This was in almost every room.  All the bedrooms, the bathrooms, the kitchen, living room, etc.  The only room that was different was the formal dining room, which had three white walls, one wall of damask flocked gold wallpaper, and a glittery popcorn ceiling.  The house was from the late 70s and I'm pretty sure it looked just like that when it was new.

(ETA: I thought we might still have a photo of the CHiPs sunken room - I know we sent one to a realtor friend in another state.  I will bug DH and see if he has it on his hard drive.)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lipli on September 12, 2011, 08:13:36 AM
My dad bought a house.  The previous owner apparently loved the color white.  Her entire living room was white - walls, carpet, furniture.  It was very creepy. But, that wasn't the odd part.  The "public" bathroom had pepto-pink tiles and cartoony frog and lily pad wall paper.  It was bizarre especially given the vanilla ice cream theme of the living room.  My dad ripped out the carpets (had awesome hardwood floors through out) and painted the rooms light colors.  But we kept the frog bathroom.


My grandfather and an ex stepmother both had white houses.  The entire house had white carpet with white walls and white shiny lucite furniture etc.  I remember growing up having to take off my shoes before entering the house and only allowed to have water. LOL  My kids had the same rules.


It wasn't creepy but nuts to me.  ;D

It was just blindingly white because that room had 2 normal sized windows and 1 huge picture window.  It was like being in a ice cream carton.  :)  She even had a little white dog to match.  I asked my dad to ask for the dog in a counter offer.  He declined. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #1aunt on September 12, 2011, 08:15:49 AM
I've been in my new house for about five months now.  I saw several odd houses while hunting.


The previous owners of the house I bought liked color.  Every room is a different color- the bathroom is lime green, BR1 blue, BR2 white above chair rail, brown below, BR3 purple, living room purple, kitchen greenish-yellow.

My dryer is in my kitchen next to my fridge.  The washer is about 12 feet away in the hallway.

And there is a stripper pole in the basement.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on September 12, 2011, 08:46:30 AM
2. We looked at a gorgeous house with a finished MIL suite in the basement, granite countertops, brand new hardwood floors and appliances. It was so nice. There was a lovely, big shade tree in the front yard, the lawn was a decent size, and it was on a very quiet street. The drawback was that it backed up to a cemetery. The backyard was fenced in with 4' high chain link fencing, and there was a headstone less than 25' from the fence. When I saw the backyard I shrieked, and DH later told me that he would never live next to a cemetery. His reasoning is hilarious. Mind you, he knows that zombies aren't real, but just in case the dead emerge from their graves, he doesn't want to be the first one eaten.

As long as the house wasn't serviced by a shallow well, I'd love to have a place that backed onto a cemetary!  At least you know the neighbour's will be quiet.  Plus, it's lots of greenspace!  I'm one of those in favour of using cemetaries as parkland - going for walks, even picnicing as long as there are no services going on and one is respectful of the gravesites.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 12, 2011, 08:56:08 AM
I had a mid-60s lakefront house in FL. It had a built-in cutting board in the kitchen with the zodiac signs on it. Weird but kind of cool at the same time.

Ohh!!! My current house has one of those! 

It used to strike me as odd, but after 11 years, it seems normal.

Does it make you want to check your horoscope every day?  :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 12, 2011, 09:02:49 AM
http://realestate.aol.com/blog/2011/08/19/unreal-estate-800-year-old-skeleton-lives-in-swedish-house/

A cemetery in the backyard is enough to keep some people away, but how about a skeleton in the house....and in full view?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wolfie on September 12, 2011, 09:57:12 AM
2. We looked at a gorgeous house with a finished MIL suite in the basement, granite countertops, brand new hardwood floors and appliances. It was so nice. There was a lovely, big shade tree in the front yard, the lawn was a decent size, and it was on a very quiet street. The drawback was that it backed up to a cemetery. The backyard was fenced in with 4' high chain link fencing, and there was a headstone less than 25' from the fence. When I saw the backyard I shrieked, and DH later told me that he would never live next to a cemetery. His reasoning is hilarious. Mind you, he knows that zombies aren't real, but just in case the dead emerge from their graves, he doesn't want to be the first one eaten.

As long as the house wasn't serviced by a shallow well, I'd love to have a place that backed onto a cemetary!  At least you know the neighbour's will be quiet.  Plus, it's lots of greenspace!  I'm one of those in favour of using cemetaries as parkland - going for walks, even picnicing as long as there are no services going on and one is respectful of the gravesites.

Where I grew up there is a house who has one wall part of the cemetery fence. I assume it used to be the caretaker's house. I can't remember if there is a door on that wall or not - it could have been removed - but there was a window and I once looked into it and saw that the room was empty. I guess if i lived in that house I wouldn't use that room for anything either.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on September 12, 2011, 10:02:44 AM
I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

The house I grew up in was custom-built, so I am sure Mom and Dad did this on purpose. All three of us had our own rooms. Mine and my sister's rooms locked from the inside. Our brother's locked from the outside.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LazyDaisy on September 12, 2011, 10:41:27 AM
I've been in my new house for about five months now.  I saw several odd houses while hunting.

  • root cellar, complete with a 3-foot long carrot
  • bathroom that appeared to have black trim... until I realized that I was having difficulty breathing because of the mold
  • a single boot in a dilapidated shed
  • Harley Davidston themed bathroom, complete with homemade leather toilet seat
[/b]
[/list]


Honestly, of all the crazy things people have posted in this thread, a leather toilet seat strikes me as the most bizarre...and gross. #1aunt for the win.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on September 12, 2011, 10:43:19 AM
The house my ex-husband still owns has a half-bath in the hallway, across from the laundry room. Just toilet and sink, mirror over sink, towel rack. Small room. And it was SALMON. Vivid, orange-pink salmon. It was so small that we couldn't remove the toilet when we painted (we opted for a nice, soothing sage green), so behind the commode is still salmon.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on September 12, 2011, 11:00:14 AM
When I was young, in the early 80s, my parents lived in a rented flat which had a small powder room (so small a person could barely fit inside). The standard option was for leopard print flock wall paper with gold shimmer. In a very small powder room. Do I need to say how absolutely claustrophobic it was?

A few years ago, my parents were downsizing after my sister and I had left home. They were searching for a smaller apartment and, by coincidence, were shown one in that same building they had lived in so many years ago. It turns out it still had the original leopard print flock paper powder room. Only it was now over 25 years old. So not good.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sanity Lost on September 12, 2011, 11:04:28 AM
We also saw one that was in the middle of a basement, with little walls around it.  It reminded me of a phone booth.  I suppose it would be handy in a house with only one full bath, if you just really both had to go...

LOL DH's and my first house had that. It was townhouse built in the 50's and it looks like the walls were an add on with a plastic sliding door in front of it. Fortunately it was built right next to the laundry hookups so we could use the laundry sink to wash our hands. I had DH install a little shelf and towel bar there for the handsoap and towel.

That same house had one bedroom painted in only what I could call sea sick pink. It was pink with a very orangey tint to it. It would make me nauseous just to walk in. First thing we did after signing the closing papers? Paint that room a lovely shade of blue.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Black Delphinium on September 12, 2011, 12:09:03 PM
Is it wrong I almost can't wait to be house hunting so I can share stories?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 12, 2011, 12:25:00 PM
Is it wrong I almost can't wait to be house hunting so I can share stories?

The crazy houses are almost better than the actual prospects!  I miss it :(
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on September 12, 2011, 12:30:50 PM
The house my ex-husband still owns has a half-bath in the hallway, across from the laundry room. Just toilet and sink, mirror over sink, towel rack. Small room. And it was SALMON. Vivid, orange-pink salmon. It was so small that we couldn't remove the toilet when we painted (we opted for a nice, soothing sage green), so behind the commode is still salmon.

Should you ever need to again, you can paint behind a toilet by taping a paint pad to a stick.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Hillia on September 12, 2011, 12:31:43 PM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 12, 2011, 12:34:17 PM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.

Ha!  I'd happily let my kids paint their rooms whatever color they want, as long as they're the ones that helped repaint it when they move out or get tired of it :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on September 12, 2011, 12:43:10 PM
My brother painted his grey. Even the floor! And my closet was only partly done because my parents are cheap and didn't want to pay for extra materials to finish it. ::)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 12, 2011, 12:44:21 PM
http://realestate.aol.com/blog/2011/08/19/unreal-estate-800-year-old-skeleton-lives-in-swedish-house/

A cemetery in the backyard is enough to keep some people away, but how about a skeleton in the house....and in full view?

Reminds me of the documentary I saw about a South American village. People had 800+ year old ancestor skeletons in a special spot in the house or the yard, talked to / prayed to the ancestor, left it special gifts, etc
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hermanne on September 12, 2011, 12:46:11 PM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.

Ha!  I'd happily let my kids paint their rooms whatever color they want, as long as they're the ones that helped repaint it when they move out or get tired of it :D

When I was little, my parents let me draw on my bedroom walls. Shocked my friends when they came over.

The room was redone when I was older.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LadyClaire on September 12, 2011, 12:52:48 PM
http://realestate.aol.com/blog/2011/08/19/unreal-estate-800-year-old-skeleton-lives-in-swedish-house/

A cemetery in the backyard is enough to keep some people away, but how about a skeleton in the house....and in full view?

I would totally buy that house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LadyClaire on September 12, 2011, 12:54:53 PM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.

Ha!  I'd happily let my kids paint their rooms whatever color they want, as long as they're the ones that helped repaint it when they move out or get tired of it :D

When I was little, my parents let me draw on my bedroom walls. Shocked my friends when they came over.

The room was redone when I was older.

I was allowed to paint whatever I wanted on my bedroom walls as a child/teenager. One wall I painted with a celestial themed mural. The sun in one corner, the moon in another, with clouds and stars all around. Another wall had dragons and random sketches drawn/painted on it. I painted my window and door frames with multi-colored tribal type patterns. Eventually I painted over everything with regular old pale lilac paint, when I was about 20.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LadyClaire on September 12, 2011, 01:01:25 PM
When DH and I were house hunting, we saw some questionable paint jobs.

One house had horrible paint in every room, but the bedroom was the absolute worst. They'd painted the walls with that thick paint that you use to create a sponged texture on the walls. They'd painted the bedroom to look like cracked leather by sponging on black, deep red, and brown. It looked like a torture chamber, honestly, rather than leather, because it resembled dried blood more than anything. The worst part? The bedroom had a tray ceiling, and they'd done the trim around the inside of the tray ceiling the same way.

Then there was a house that had one room with a really weird vaulted ceiling. The ceiling was done in wood paneling, sort of like bead board, and they'd painted the ceiling BRIGHT bright green. Like seriously neon eye-burning green. Then they'd painted the border around the walls with watermelon slices in neon green and pink.

Still another house had a hand painted border in the kitchen that ran just above the counter tops. The woman had painted little cups of coffee with curly "steam" rising from them. The problem was she painted both the cups and the contents with varying shades of brown, along with the steam. She was also not an especially good artist, so it looked for all the world like there were little steaming cups of poo all along the kitchen walls.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Hillia on September 12, 2011, 01:10:29 PM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.

Ha!  I'd happily let my kids paint their rooms whatever color they want, as long as they're the ones that helped repaint it when they move out or get tired of it :D

When I was little, my parents let me draw on my bedroom walls. Shocked my friends when they came over.

The room was redone when I was older.

Actually, now I'm remembering a HS friend of mine; he painted his room white with a red border around each wall (vertical and horizontal) and then wrote Who lyrics over the space with a black sharpie.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on September 12, 2011, 02:01:13 PM
I once saw a townhouse in which they had (badly) "wallpapered" the bathroom with black and white checked contact paper. They didn't even bother to line up seams. It was awful.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: esteban on September 12, 2011, 02:01:28 PM
I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

I once babysat for a family who did this. They told me over and over again to make sure the doors were locked when I put them to bed. The two kids (aged 3 and 5) weren't even allowed to go to the bathroom in the night - they were both still in nappies. It made me feel a little bit sick, to be honest, and I didn't babysit for them again.

Our kids rooms are all upstairs with a bathroom and their bedrooms being the only thing off that hallway.  We have a hook and eye lock on the outside of that hallway door as we have a problem with our oldest getting up at night and sneaking treats.  So the kids are locked into their little wing of the house, but they have access to a bathroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: shadowfox79 on September 12, 2011, 02:45:43 PM
Still another house had a hand painted border in the kitchen that ran just above the counter tops. The woman had painted little cups of coffee with curly "steam" rising from them. The problem was she painted both the cups and the contents with varying shades of brown, along with the steam. She was also not an especially good artist, so it looked for all the world like there were little steaming cups of poo all along the kitchen walls.

I will see this image for the rest of my life. Thank you.  ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on September 12, 2011, 02:53:19 PM
Have any of you'all ever seen a small banquet room with low ceilings, white marble floors and mirrored walls? You could probably fit at least eight to twelve 12-tops in it (maybe more if you squeezed).  Now imagine that it's inner-tube shaped.  And the inner-tube has lost air, and has been pushed together so that the hole in the middle is gone and the two sides are touching. With one side larger than the other and a lighted glass brick wall as part of the middle and some of the narrow side isn't mirrored.  Just almost everywhere else.  And there's a bump out of the smaller side that you think could be a separate room, but there aren't any doors, just a narrow areas that end up opening back into the bigger room.  Got that?  Okay, and a the part where the thin side opens out to the fat side, there is a door.  Except not a door.  It's really just a collapsible screen on rollers, painted black, with one side attached with hinges to the side of the door opening.  So being a screen on wheels, it's open near the top and bottom.  And when you roll the screen open, you find a full bath.  About 4 feet wide and 15 feet long.  With a tub/shower at the end, and one side of the room lined with a countertop and a mirror all along the countertop.  And then the toilet and sink are near the far back near the tub.

That was the daylight basement of a perfectly lovely and otherwise normal house.

Oops, I remembered a lot more mirrors.  And I think the whole wall behind the picture taker is mirrored.
http://www.trulia.com/homes/photos/Nevada/Reno/sold/20448395-1836-Three-Mile-Dr-Reno-NV-89509#item-10
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on September 12, 2011, 03:03:59 PM
The first house we bought had poppy wallpaper in the bathroom.  Kind of like this:
(http://resources.shopstyle.co.uk/sim/86/8e/868e23e582abe14a699993077cf9cd7e/next-red-poppy-wallpaper.jpg)
only the poppies were acid pink, about 4 inches across.  We couldn't paint over it, because it was a very slick, almost plastic feel to it.  Paint just peeled right off.  But the wallpaper didn't.  :-\  They must have put it up with white glue, right over the wallboard.  We managed to get it off, but had to replace it with more wallpaper, since the wallboard was too damaged to paint.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 12, 2011, 03:17:09 PM
Have any of you'all ever seen a small banquet room with low ceilings, white marble floors and mirrored walls? You could probably fit at least eight to twelve 12-tops in it (maybe more if you squeezed).  Now imagine that it's inner-tube shaped.  And the inner-tube has lost air, and has been pushed together so that the hole in the middle is gone and the two sides are touching. With one side larger than the other and a lighted glass brick wall as part of the middle and some of the narrow side isn't mirrored.  Just almost everywhere else.  And there's a bump out of the smaller side that you think could be a separate room, but there aren't any doors, just a narrow areas that end up opening back into the bigger room.  Got that?  Okay, and a the part where the thin side opens out to the fat side, there is a door.  Except not a door.  It's really just a collapsible screen on rollers, painted black, with one side attached with hinges to the side of the door opening.  So being a screen on wheels, it's open near the top and bottom.  And when you roll the screen open, you find a full bath.  About 4 feet wide and 15 feet long.  With a tub/shower at the end, and one side of the room lined with a countertop and a mirror all along the countertop.  And then the toilet and sink are near the far back near the tub.

That was the daylight basement of a perfectly lovely and otherwise normal house.

Oops, I remembered a lot more mirrors.  And I think the whole wall behind the picture taker is mirrored.
http://www.trulia.com/homes/photos/Nevada/Reno/sold/20448395-1836-Three-Mile-Dr-Reno-NV-89509#item-10

Did somebody draw a snake with lipstick on the bathroom mirror in photo #9??
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: MandiC76 on September 12, 2011, 03:20:22 PM
Don't know if any of you have discovered this section of the I Can Has Cheezburger site, but you might enjoy it! :)

http://lovelylisting.icanhascheezburger.com/ (http://lovelylisting.icanhascheezburger.com/)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 12, 2011, 03:24:50 PM
Another house I lived in as a kid had a window over the kitchen sink that looked into the family room.  The family room had been added after the house was built and they didn't bother to remove that window.

That set up is very common around here in houses with new rooms attached to kitchens.  They remove the window panes themselves leaving the frame and put a small ledge over the lower edge of the frame.  It promptly becomes relabeled a "pass through" (a way to move food or beverages from the kitchen to the family room or dirty dishes back into the kitchen without leaving the room you're in) and it is considered a selling point!  LOL! 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on September 12, 2011, 03:26:22 PM
Have any of you'all ever seen a small banquet room with low ceilings, white marble floors and mirrored walls? You could probably fit at least eight to twelve 12-tops in it (maybe more if you squeezed).  Now imagine that it's inner-tube shaped.  And the inner-tube has lost air, and has been pushed together so that the hole in the middle is gone and the two sides are touching. With one side larger than the other and a lighted glass brick wall as part of the middle and some of the narrow side isn't mirrored.  Just almost everywhere else.  And there's a bump out of the smaller side that you think could be a separate room, but there aren't any doors, just a narrow areas that end up opening back into the bigger room.  Got that?  Okay, and a the part where the thin side opens out to the fat side, there is a door.  Except not a door.  It's really just a collapsible screen on rollers, painted black, with one side attached with hinges to the side of the door opening.  So being a screen on wheels, it's open near the top and bottom.  And when you roll the screen open, you find a full bath.  About 4 feet wide and 15 feet long.  With a tub/shower at the end, and one side of the room lined with a countertop and a mirror all along the countertop.  And then the toilet and sink are near the far back near the tub.

That was the daylight basement of a perfectly lovely and otherwise normal house.

Oops, I remembered a lot more mirrors.  And I think the whole wall behind the picture taker is mirrored.
http://www.trulia.com/homes/photos/Nevada/Reno/sold/20448395-1836-Three-Mile-Dr-Reno-NV-89509#item-10

Did somebody draw a snake with lipstick on the bathroom mirror in photo #9??

LOL, that wasn't there when I toured.  And I think it's Snoopy done with lipstick...

---------------------

Just checked again, and you're right.  Snake (or comic dinasaur) in red lipstick :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on September 12, 2011, 03:28:00 PM
The house my ex-husband still owns has a half-bath in the hallway, across from the laundry room. Just toilet and sink, mirror over sink, towel rack. Small room. And it was SALMON. Vivid, orange-pink salmon. It was so small that we couldn't remove the toilet when we painted (we opted for a nice, soothing sage green), so behind the commode is still salmon.

I had toilets in two bathrooms replaced and painted as far as I could behind the toilet in the third bathroom that I painted in this house.

I've also learned how to take the TANK off the back of the toilet, paint, let it dry, then replace it (with new gaskets/washers - just in case).  It's not as easy as ignoring that area - but it is easier than cleaning paint off the back of the toilet tank after it dries. 

Did you know that sometimes the back of the tank hasn't been glazed so it's "absorbent" of paint.  Not good whe you've used orange creamsicle or red paint on the walls..........
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zilla on September 12, 2011, 03:38:33 PM
When DH and I were house hunting, we saw some questionable paint jobs.

One house had horrible paint in every room, but the bedroom was the absolute worst. They'd painted the walls with that thick paint that you use to create a sponged texture on the walls. They'd painted the bedroom to look like cracked leather by sponging on black, deep red, and brown. It looked like a torture chamber, honestly, rather than leather, because it resembled dried blood more than anything. The worst part? The bedroom had a tray ceiling, and they'd done the trim around the inside of the tray ceiling the same way.


A house we lived in, we painted our room a deep burgundy red color.  We just loved it.

When we were selling it, the realtor made us change it after hearing "blood cave" for the third time from buyers.   ;D (we did, a nice boring beige)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on September 12, 2011, 04:05:25 PM
Ever so slightly off topic, but I just moved into a house that's across the street from the old town cemetery. Everyone I've mentioned this too is jealous. Apparently, the foliage is gorgeous in the fall, and the cemetery is a favorite walking/jogging spot. (No bicycles allowed.)

I've taken a few walks through the place. There are graves dating back to the 1700s (that's pretty old for the US). There might be older ones--the town was founded in the 1600s--I need to find out when they started using this cemetery. Although I did spot one recent burial from 2001--I'm guessing it was an old, old family plot. Families must have purchased large burial lots, because there is a huge mix of graves--ones from the early 1800s right next to ones from the early 1900s, mostly with some family name in common. And one part of the cemetery is a Native American burial ground, but I haven't found that yet--it's a huge cemetery. You can tell that the fashion in grave markers changed drastically over time--there are plots with granite curbs bordering them, and plots with huge central markers and smaller stones marking individual graves and everything in between.

It's not creepy at all. It looks rather like a large park that just happens to have a lot of small stone monuments in it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 12, 2011, 04:10:13 PM
http://realestate.aol.com/blog/2011/08/19/unreal-estate-800-year-old-skeleton-lives-in-swedish-house/

A cemetery in the backyard is enough to keep some people away, but how about a skeleton in the house....and in full view?

Reminds me of the documentary I saw about a South American village. People had 800+ year old ancestor skeletons in a special spot in the house or the yard, talked to / prayed to the ancestor, left it special gifts, etc

I could do that if I left the US and went to Ireland, Scotland, France, Sweden or England and dug up an 800-yr-old ancestor, but I'm not feeling that ambitious today.  :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 12, 2011, 04:33:26 PM
We found a house where the master bedroom had lovely cathedral ceilings with a big window at the top...that opened up into the kitchen...that did not have a glass panel separating the two rooms.  This room had no windows otherwise. 

Also saw a house with a large man made of pottery sitting in the garden and another with a dining table in the oversized hallway.  Either the house had no hallway, or it had no dining room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Hmmmmm on September 12, 2011, 05:03:04 PM
One house was beautifully decorated everywhere except the kitchen.  There was red and green plaid wallpaper on the walls, yellow and pink polka dot wallpaper on the celining, and fruit wall paper on the cabinent doors that "color" coordinated with the other 2 wall papers.  It's been 15 years, but I can till see that kitchen.

In another house, the homeowner was a hobbiest carpenter.  He built custom murphy beds into all of the bed rooms and little loft areas with a desk below and ladder leading up to the little lofts.  While fun when the kids were little, once they hit 12 or so, they wouldn't fit up there anymore.  They'd extended the house in the back creating a new master suite.  The old master bedroom had been converted to a "spa" area.  It had a hot tub you'd normally see outdoors, a sauna, and a little exercise area with full mirrors.  You had to walk through this unbelievably humid room to get to the master.   
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #1aunt on September 13, 2011, 08:48:11 AM
I've been in my new house for about five months now.  I saw several odd houses while hunting.

  • root cellar, complete with a 3-foot long carrot
  • bathroom that appeared to have black trim... until I realized that I was having difficulty breathing because of the mold
  • a single boot in a dilapidated shed
  • Harley Davidston themed bathroom, complete with homemade leather toilet seat
[/b]
[/list]


Honestly, of all the crazy things people have posted in this thread, a leather toilet seat strikes me as the most bizarre...and gross. #1aunt for the win.

It was definitely unique.  Part of the leather had peeled back from the underside of the lid, revealing the staples holding the leather on.  I didn't lift the seat to see what condition it was in....   

The walls were also bright Harley Davidson orange.  The master bedroom matched. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on September 13, 2011, 09:25:22 AM
The first house we bought had poppy wallpaper in the bathroom.  Kind of like this:
(http://resources.shopstyle.co.uk/sim/86/8e/868e23e582abe14a699993077cf9cd7e/next-red-poppy-wallpaper.jpg)
only the poppies were acid pink, about 4 inches across.  We couldn't paint over it, because it was a very slick, almost plastic feel to it.  Paint just peeled right off.  But the wallpaper didn't.  :-\  They must have put it up with white glue, right over the wallboard.  We managed to get it off, but had to replace it with more wallpaper, since the wallboard was too damaged to paint.

I liked that wallpaper!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on September 13, 2011, 09:31:51 AM
Our recent house hunt brought us some very bizarre elements. Like the house where the kitchen had been relocated to the 2nd floor.  That one also had stairs going nowhere and a random toilet in the basement. 

There was the house with red velvet flocked wallpaper and matching red carpet.

The house with the unlisted room.  Listing said living room/dining room/kitchen on first floor. There was also a parlor that had been painted dark purple with a 4' Ravens (football team) emblem on one wall.

There were a lot more; the link in my signature goes to my house-hunt journal entries.  We actually didn't buy a house in the City and are about to start house-hunting again in another area.  More fun!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LazyDaisy on September 13, 2011, 10:25:58 AM
Our recent house hunt brought us some very bizarre elements. Like the house where the kitchen had been relocated to the 2nd floor.  That one also had stairs going nowhere and a random toilet in the basement. 

There was the house with red velvet flocked wallpaper and matching red carpet.

The house with the unlisted room.  Listing said living room/dining room/kitchen on first floor. There was also a parlor that had been painted dark purple with a 4' Ravens (football team) emblem on one wall.

There were a lot more; the link in my signature goes to my house-hunt journal entries.  We actually didn't buy a house in the City and are about to start house-hunting again in another area.  More fun!

Maybe the previous owners were inspired by the Winchester Mystery House. They were trying to confuse the ghosts.  ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 13, 2011, 10:33:32 AM
I was allowed to paint whatever I wanted on my bedroom walls as a child/teenager. One wall I painted with a celestial themed mural. The sun in one corner, the moon in another, with clouds and stars all around. Another wall had dragons and random sketches drawn/painted on it. I painted my window and door frames with multi-colored tribal type patterns. Eventually I painted over everything with regular old pale lilac paint, when I was about 20.

I think my mom tricked me.  She said I could paint a mural on one wall of my room when we got some time to move the furniture and get the proper paints.  My plan was to paint a rainbow and a unicorn, my favorite things!  However, we never moved my furniture and I guess I was content to keep waiting.  So it never happened.  I really think mom didn't want me to paint the wall.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Tierrainney on September 13, 2011, 10:34:23 AM
The stairs to nowhere reminds me, I lived in a house with a door to no where.

The house had been built some time in the 1890s and had lovely old wood everywhere. The original kitchen was reported to be very small, dark and difficult to use. The previous owners had converted a downstairs bedroom and added to make a big, light and nice modern kitchen. But the door into the bedroom was left behind, as it was original wood and matched the entry. The door did not open and the knob did not turn. People would ask us where that door went and we started calling it "The Door to Nowhere". I wish I had taken pictures.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 13, 2011, 10:49:14 AM
My dream house would have hidden rooms and stairs and possibly stairs and doors to nowhere.  I've always wanted a house like that.

I do have a plan to get a window to nowhere in my current house.  The sunroom is an add on and they put up a cheap flimsy paneled wall on the side of the dining room that formerly was the back of the house.  I think there is a window behind that wall.  If I can pull down the panel maybe I can get to the old wall and window.  The plan is to put a light in the window and a stained glass piece. 

Good idea?  Crazy?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 13, 2011, 10:53:07 AM
My dream house would have hidden rooms and stairs and possibly stairs and doors to nowhere.  I've always wanted a house like that.

I do have a plan to get a window to nowhere in my current house.  The sunroom is an add on and they put up a cheap flimsy paneled wall on the side of the dining room that formerly was the back of the house.  I think there is a window behind that wall.  If I can pull down the panel maybe I can get to the old wall and window.  The plan is to put a light in the window and a stained glass piece. 

Good idea?  Crazy?

I think it sounds awesome. 

Another possibility is that if it's a really big window, you could have French doors put in there for an additional entrance into the sun room and you could also open them to expand your dining room in case of lots of company! 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 13, 2011, 10:57:12 AM
I say go for it!  When we finish our attic, I really really want to put in a secret passage, maybe hidden stairs.

I totally forgot about a weird feature to our house.  There's no way to access our basement from inside the house.  It was converted to an apartment, and the put in an exterior door and closed off the interior door.  It makes the space very hard to use - I really don't want to have to get dressed and go outside every time I want to grab a bottle of wine from the basement fridge.

There's also no backyard access directly from the house.  When previous owners built an addition onto the back, the back door got moved, and the gate is now about 8 feet from the door.  That's high on my list of  things to fix, it would make letting the dog out much easier.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 13, 2011, 11:12:38 AM
My dream house would have hidden rooms and stairs and possibly stairs and doors to nowhere.  I've always wanted a house like that.

I do have a plan to get a window to nowhere in my current house.  The sunroom is an add on and they put up a cheap flimsy paneled wall on the side of the dining room that formerly was the back of the house.  I think there is a window behind that wall.  If I can pull down the panel maybe I can get to the old wall and window.  The plan is to put a light in the window and a stained glass piece. 

Good idea?  Crazy?

I think it sounds awesome. 

Another possibility is that if it's a really big window, you could have French doors put in there for an additional entrance into the sun room and you could also open them to expand your dining room in case of lots of company!

Not a bad idea at all!  I had also thought about opening the window all the way into the sunroom and then putting the stained glass in so you could see it from both sides and I wouldn't need a back-light.  However, right now the sun room has bookshelves on that wall, so I would have to find a spot for the books.  Our house is pretty small at only 1200 square feet with no storage areas or basement, so it is a challenge to find places for everything.  Although the family who lived in it before us had 5 kids and managed.

I say go for it!  When we finish our attic, I really really want to put in a secret passage, maybe hidden stairs.

My aunt has an old crumbling painted lady house which has three fun hidden things.  Under the stairs near the 1st floor there is a bench that you can open up and crawl into the space under the stairs.  Then there is a hidden stair case that goes from the kitchen hall closet up to the middle turning point of the stairs where there is another closet.  We used to play on those stairs.  Last, there is a stairway in the basement that goes up into one of the rooms.  I've never seen it but she told us about it.

The disappointing thing is that my aunt never uses any of these anymore.  The hall stairs have been closed off completely and turned into linen storage.  The area under the stairs is ignored, and I have no idea if she can even get to the basement to bedroom stairs.  Auntie is a bit of a hoarder and the bedrooms are packed to the top. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: 2littlemonkeys on September 13, 2011, 11:17:28 AM
We have hook/eye latches on our bedroom doors too but it's to keep the kids OUT, not in.  When they were smaller, we used a tension gate to keep them from wandering around (the door stayed open but they couldn't leave unless we helped them).  We still use it to keep the cat out of the room (he can't jump it) but it's not locked in anymore.  They can just pick it up and move it out of the way.


When my former roommate and I were looking for an apartment, we toured an...interesting...place.  It was a 3 bedroom, 2nd floor walk up.  When you walked in through the door, the room to the right was a pretty large living room and it was bright and sunny.  It was also about the only thing this place had going for it.  Directly opposite the front door, there was a door for a teensy room.  You'd be lucky if you could get a twin bed and a chest of drawers in it.  No closet.  A bit further down the hall, there was another room just like it.  Then there was a teeny bathroom (which is pretty par for the course). 

Then it got worse.  The "3rd bedroom" was where the one closet in the whole place used to be.  You couldn't even get a bed in there.  The person currently renting was sleeping on an air mattress that barely fit.  No room for a dresser.  Then we discovered that the owner had turned the original kitchen into a small dining room and the small pantry into the kitchen.  No sink.  Just a stove and refrigerator crammed together.  The stove was blocking the legal second exit to the apartment.  My roommate pointed that out and the owner just shrugged and suggested she just move the stove if she needed to use the door.

We thanked the owner for showing us around but said it really didn't suit our needs.  He got mad because we "wasted his time." 

I have to admit, I don't think I'd mind living next to a cemetery.  I think it would be really interesting. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on September 13, 2011, 11:35:34 AM
Not my househunting - but my gran lived in a house with a "secret" room. It was really bizarre. On the first floor, there was a room at the back of the house, that you could only get to through a small door (around 3 feet high) in the corner of the spare bedroom. It was a decent sized room, but it didn't have any normal sized doors.

She did consider enlarging the door, but luckily for us grandkids, she decided to turn it into a play room! We referred to it as Narnia, obviously. ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on September 13, 2011, 12:00:07 PM
Living by a cemetary wouldn't bother me, but I'm guessing it's because I grew up across the street from a church. I'm just used to being around cemetaries.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on September 13, 2011, 12:14:40 PM
This wasn't when I was house hunting, but I visited someone once and had to use the bathroom.
To get to it, I had to climb a flight of stairs. The stairs ended at a door. I mean, right at a door. If you  didn't want to go into that room, you had to shimmy through a gap in the stair railing about 8" wide to get to the rest of the upstairs.

Someone, one day, thought that was a good idea.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: mandycorn on September 13, 2011, 12:19:29 PM
I found a couple of really interesting things while I was house hunting.

A townhouse I seriously considered buying had the master suite as the only room upstairs; the other bedrooms and the public areas were downstairs, which seemed like a good setup, however, the master bedroom had an opening in one wall above the kitchen, overlooking the living room. That opening meant that the master bedroom had a view of the living room and people in the living room could look up into the master bedroom. Also, the stairs to the master were a spiral staircase, so the only way to get a bed up there would be to hoist it through the opening in the wall above the kitchen.

I saw several condos that included a split bathroom: the toilet and shower/tub were in a room with a door and the vanity was outside in the hallway. It's the sort of setup you see a lot in hotels and sort of made sense if you were attempting to share a bathroom with several people, but invariably, they all had light carpet in the hallway that ran right up to the bottom of the sink. I couldn't imagine how much water had been spilled on that carpet. I think the weirdest part of this one was how many condos seemed to have this. I'd never given much thought to it before but after seeing five or six in a row, it became a major point on the "no need to see more" list I had.

A friend of mine has a house that has a really weird feature. They have a round alcove off their living room that they use a breakfast nook, which is really cool, and from the outside it looks like it's inside a turret that goes up higher than the house with a pointed roof. I assumed it was just an attractive feature and didn't think much of it, until one day I went to visit and when I made it to the living room, my friend was hanging upside down from a trap door in the ceiling of the breakfast nook. When I questioned him, he came down and gave me a tour: turns out there's a whole second floor of the turret, but it can only be accessed by climbing through the back of the upstairs linen closet and creeping down a long, low-ceiling-ed hallway. They cut the trap door in it so they could do the finish work on it to turn it into a playhouse sort of thing and it's got carpeting and drywall and wall sconces and it's furnished almost entirely with beanbags so it's a perfect reading room.

 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 13, 2011, 12:39:39 PM
The stairs ended at a door. I mean, right at a door. If you  didn't want to go into that room, you had to shimmy through a gap in the stair railing about 8" wide to get to the rest of the upstairs.

Someone, one day, thought that was a good idea.
It must have been a real circus watching people trying to move furniture into the other rooms through an 8" gap!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: WhiteTigerCub on September 13, 2011, 12:57:03 PM
I was apartment hunting when I came across a strange place. It was being advertised as a one bedroom but was really a studio setup. On the outside the apartment buildings looked very nice and well kept like one would expect from an apartment complex.

One got to the apartment by climbing the stairs that accessed the roof of the building. That should have given me a clue about what was to come.

The place was all one room with the exception of a small nook where a toilet had been plumbed. Beside the toilet (which was cordoned off with a shower curtain) was a pedastal sink. According to the landlord the sink was both the bathroom and kitchen sink as there was a very small fridge located just on the other side of the sink. There was a small countertop/cupboard thing which had  two hot plates on it that served as the stove. There was single light fixture in the center of the 'roof' with an extension cord that ran across the floor to the hot plates. This was the only electrical hook up in the room.

The floor was that sort of black tar paper they put on roofs before they add shingles to it with remnants of carpet strewn about. There were no windows into the place at all, no closests or anything else, just one big 'room'.

The landlord was really disappointed when I told him the place would not work for my needs. "it's a great neighboorhood!"
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wulfie on September 13, 2011, 01:07:01 PM
One apartment I looked at (and did rent, I couldn't resist it) you entered into the apartment through the bathroom. You could sit on the throne and answer the door at the same time (and I did with Door to Door sales people/religion vendors) The shower was a fiberglass shower stall set up on some bricks. You had to be very careful not to lean against the shower side or it would fall over.  The "Kitchen" was this really cool unit about the size of a wash machine. The top of it was a sink and two burners, the bottom was a fridge. It had a lid that came down over the top to enclose it. It was part of a walled off deck and was cheap and had a FANTASTIC view of Honolulu and the water!

Friends of mine had a strange bathroom set up. The house was built before indoor plumbing. Someone along the line converted the stairway landing between the 2nd and 3rd floors into a half bath.  To get to the 3rd floor, you had to go into the bathroom, slide the doors shut and the door to the 3rd floor open. climb over the toilet and go up the stairs. They used the 3rd floor for a storage area and kids playroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 13, 2011, 01:29:44 PM
I once saw an antebellum home (not a plantation, a normal home) in NC that sat at the end of a long country road. Local legend had it that there was a hidden room above the entry where someone could see far down that road.

Supposedly they could see the Yankees coming from a long distance away and could sound the alarm. Also, the home may have been built by Huguenots; it was common in the US at that time for them to build hiding places in case they were attacked. Attacks had been common in Europe in Catholic-controlled countries - I guess old habits die hard.

The house burned to the ground shortly after my visit. Very sad. :-[
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 13, 2011, 01:36:08 PM
A friend of mine has a house that has a really weird feature. They have a round alcove off their living room that they use a breakfast nook, which is really cool, and from the outside it looks like it's inside a turret that goes up higher than the house with a pointed roof. I assumed it was just an attractive feature and didn't think much of it, until one day I went to visit and when I made it to the living room, my friend was hanging upside down from a trap door in the ceiling of the breakfast nook. When I questioned him, he came down and gave me a tour: turns out there's a whole second floor of the turret, but it can only be accessed by climbing through the back of the upstairs linen closet and creeping down a long, low-ceiling-ed hallway. They cut the trap door in it so they could do the finish work on it to turn it into a playhouse sort of thing and it's got carpeting and drywall and wall sconces and it's furnished almost entirely with beanbags so it's a perfect reading room.

I want this.  Minus the trap door.  Any windows in it?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: KenveeB on September 13, 2011, 01:37:43 PM
A friend of mine has a house that has a really weird feature. They have a round alcove off their living room that they use a breakfast nook, which is really cool, and from the outside it looks like it's inside a turret that goes up higher than the house with a pointed roof. I assumed it was just an attractive feature and didn't think much of it, until one day I went to visit and when I made it to the living room, my friend was hanging upside down from a trap door in the ceiling of the breakfast nook. When I questioned him, he came down and gave me a tour: turns out there's a whole second floor of the turret, but it can only be accessed by climbing through the back of the upstairs linen closet and creeping down a long, low-ceiling-ed hallway. They cut the trap door in it so they could do the finish work on it to turn it into a playhouse sort of thing and it's got carpeting and drywall and wall sconces and it's furnished almost entirely with beanbags so it's a perfect reading room.

Very cool!  When I win the lottery and build my dream house, I'm determined to have a couple of secret passages (including at least one accessed by a sliding bookcase) and at least one completely secret room.  I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 13, 2011, 01:40:52 PM
I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)

Secrets.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LazyDaisy on September 13, 2011, 01:42:55 PM
I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)

Secrets.

hidden treasure of course
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RingTailedLemur on September 13, 2011, 01:44:20 PM
I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)

Secrets.

A chamber of secrets.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 13, 2011, 01:50:35 PM
I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)

Secrets.

A chamber of secrets.

And possibly an evil chamber.  Or good.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Black Delphinium on September 13, 2011, 01:58:05 PM
I'd make a secret room my RPG/gameroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on September 13, 2011, 01:58:17 PM
Secret chamber?

Library & reading room

Crafts room and supply storage for those crafts

Computer room

Chocolate storage

Master bedroom

Playroom for the grandkids

Hide various collections in it - coins, stamps, music, books, chocolate bunnies..........
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 13, 2011, 02:05:15 PM
I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)

Secrets.

A chamber of secrets.

And possibly an evil chamber.  Or good.

This reminds me of a prank my friends I pulled when we were teenagers. We did this at the church my dad was minister of. It was an awesome place, built around 1910, and still had original features like the coal room and hard-to-find passageways. There was also an attic that was big enough that you could walk around standing up. It was used for storage.

We had the bright idea to make it look like someone had had a seance up there, so we made a circle with the chairs, put candles in the center, and made up some ridiculously fake scary chalk drawings.

Apparently the cleaning person had a bit of a scare when she went up there after that!  :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 13, 2011, 02:07:15 PM
Secret chamber?

Library & reading room

Crafts room and supply storage for those crafts

Computer room

Chocolate storage

Master bedroom

Playroom for the grandkids

Hide various collections in it - coins, stamps, music, books, chocolate bunnies..........

The bolded!  :-*
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: dtbrad on September 13, 2011, 02:08:00 PM
My house has the world's weirdest bathroom doors.  They are floor to ceiling saloon-type doors.  One whole door cut down the middle and swing both ways.  With 6 panes of glass in each.  Yes, I have curtains on them.  My house was build in 1906 without plumbing and so when the bathroom was added, the door would have blocked the whole hallway. This was actually a creative solution.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hermanne on September 13, 2011, 02:15:35 PM
My PILs have a "staircase to nowhere". It used to be their basement stairs. When they remodeled, they had the kitchen floor placed right over top of the stairwell, leaving the staircase and doorway at the bottom. They also put in what looks like a wood box with a lid in the kitchen, but if you open it you'll see the bottom steps of the original staircase. That's their laundry chute, and the tops steps they use for storage.

And I want a secret room! :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RingTailedLemur on September 13, 2011, 02:16:31 PM
Secret chamber?

Library & reading room

Crafts room and supply storage for those crafts

Computer room

Chocolate storage

Master bedroom

Playroom for the grandkids

Hide various collections in it - coins, stamps, music, books, chocolate bunnies..........

The bolded!  :-*

Like this?
(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/--sAL-2gtdjg/TVp5IEnv2FI/AAAAAAAAD6M/DNKdymPqAyo/s1600/room.jpg)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kimblee on September 13, 2011, 02:46:37 PM
A friend of mine has a house that has a really weird feature. They have a round alcove off their living room that they use a breakfast nook, which is really cool, and from the outside it looks like it's inside a turret that goes up higher than the house with a pointed roof. I assumed it was just an attractive feature and didn't think much of it, until one day I went to visit and when I made it to the living room, my friend was hanging upside down from a trap door in the ceiling of the breakfast nook. When I questioned him, he came down and gave me a tour: turns out there's a whole second floor of the turret, but it can only be accessed by climbing through the back of the upstairs linen closet and creeping down a long, low-ceiling-ed hallway. They cut the trap door in it so they could do the finish work on it to turn it into a playhouse sort of thing and it's got carpeting and drywall and wall sconces and it's furnished almost entirely with beanbags so it's a perfect reading room.

Very cool!  When I win the lottery and build my dream house, I'm determined to have a couple of secret passages (including at least one accessed by a sliding bookcase) and at least one completely secret room.  I haven't decided what I'd use it for, though. :)

The master bedroom?

The only person I know who has a secret room was a friend's uncle and his family. And the "secret room" (as in, the door was hidden by a cabnet and you had to open the cabnet and then open the door in the back of the cabnet) was the master bedroom. It was pretty cool.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on September 13, 2011, 04:48:25 PM
The stairs ended at a door. I mean, right at a door. If you  didn't want to go into that room, you had to shimmy through a gap in the stair railing about 8" wide to get to the rest of the upstairs.

Someone, one day, thought that was a good idea.
It must have been a real circus watching people trying to move furniture into the other rooms through an 8" gap!!

They could have lifted it over the railing...still, it must have been ridiculous. While they were building it, NO ONE thought, "Hmm, if I just move this wall and door back a foot or two, my life would be SO much easier!"?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on September 13, 2011, 04:50:13 PM
I heard about, but it was rented before I could look at it, a rental place that was a converted water tower. I would have taken it sight unseen.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Black Delphinium on September 13, 2011, 04:54:33 PM
There's an unused church near here that I'd love to convert into a house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 13, 2011, 05:01:23 PM
There's an unused church near here that I'd love to convert into a house.

That sounds awesome!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on September 13, 2011, 05:34:25 PM
I heard about, but it was rented before I could look at it, a rental place that was a converted water tower. I would have taken it sight unseen.

That sounds interesting, but what kind of entrance would it have? The only ones I've seen are accessed by a ladder!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on September 13, 2011, 05:35:23 PM
I heard about, but it was rented before I could look at it, a rental place that was a converted water tower. I would have taken it sight unseen.

That sounds interesting, but what kind of entrance would it have? The only ones I've seen are accessed by a ladder!

I had much younger knees then.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Vall on September 13, 2011, 08:54:27 PM
Eons ago I had a boyfriend who bought a home.  The house had lots of nice kitchen cabinets.  They also lined all of the walls in each bedroom with upper kitchen cabinets.  Good for storage but very, very odd.

When DH and I were looking at houses, we saw one that had a beautiful stone fireplace in the corner of the living room.  It really was beautiful.  The other downstairs rooms were large but needed some work (okay with us).  Upstairs, we opened one of the doors to go in, and were looking at the bare pipe for the fireplace.  Yep, they had just cut a hole in the wood floor and ran it up.  We had to turn to the side to squeeze into the room (it was a larger bedroom and this was the only access).  That had to be a fire code violation.

I'd love to have secret rooms and passageways too.  Very cool.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: mandycorn on September 14, 2011, 12:12:17 PM
A friend of mine has a house that has a really weird feature. They have a round alcove off their living room that they use a breakfast nook, which is really cool, and from the outside it looks like it's inside a turret that goes up higher than the house with a pointed roof. I assumed it was just an attractive feature and didn't think much of it, until one day I went to visit and when I made it to the living room, my friend was hanging upside down from a trap door in the ceiling of the breakfast nook. When I questioned him, he came down and gave me a tour: turns out there's a whole second floor of the turret, but it can only be accessed by climbing through the back of the upstairs linen closet and creeping down a long, low-ceiling-ed hallway. They cut the trap door in it so they could do the finish work on it to turn it into a playhouse sort of thing and it's got carpeting and drywall and wall sconces and it's furnished almost entirely with beanbags so it's a perfect reading room.

I want this.  Minus the trap door.  Any windows in it?

Nope, it's excellent for napping ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Hillia on September 14, 2011, 01:44:32 PM
I looked at a rental place once that was a converted firehouse.  The truck garage (with pole) was still intact, and the bathroom hadn't been converted - it still had 3 stalls and 2 sinks.  Handy for throwing parties, I thought.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on September 14, 2011, 01:51:03 PM
A friend of mine has a house that has a really weird feature. They have a round alcove off their living room that they use a breakfast nook, which is really cool, and from the outside it looks like it's inside a turret that goes up higher than the house with a pointed roof. I assumed it was just an attractive feature and didn't think much of it, until one day I went to visit and when I made it to the living room, my friend was hanging upside down from a trap door in the ceiling of the breakfast nook. When I questioned him, he came down and gave me a tour: turns out there's a whole second floor of the turret, but it can only be accessed by climbing through the back of the upstairs linen closet and creeping down a long, low-ceiling-ed hallway. They cut the trap door in it so they could do the finish work on it to turn it into a playhouse sort of thing and it's got carpeting and drywall and wall sconces and it's furnished almost entirely with beanbags so it's a perfect reading room.

I want this.  Minus the trap door.  Any windows in it?

Nope, it's excellent for napping ;)
WANT!!!!  Beanbags and all!  It would make an excellent migraine room. 

I just remembered the house with the finished apertures in ALL interior doors.  I'm assuming they were for cats or small dogs, although there was no evidence in the house of either.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dazi on September 14, 2011, 04:04:45 PM
I forgot about the place with the weird shower.  It looked like it was from a RV or trailer, but it was in a regular house.  That wasn't the weird part though...it had an exposed lightbulb in the middle of the ceiling of the shower stall (as in hanging with just the wire) and the light switch was in the shower stall on the wall furthest from the knobs.  It also had green and gold shag carpeting throughout the entire house...including the bathrooms and kitchen.

Yeah, my goal in life is to be electrocuted in the shower  ::).i


My friend also told me about a house she looked at that had that green outdoor carpeting throughout the entire place.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wavicle on September 14, 2011, 04:12:08 PM
Not house hunting, but one of my professors talked about how she had previously lived in a lovely house deigned by a famous architect. However, all the doorknobs were in the middle of the doors instead of on the side.

The best part was that this was a physics professor, married to another physics professor. They were teased by all their friends for having doors that were clearly designed by someone who did not consider the physics of why the doorknobs are where they are.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Rohanna on September 14, 2011, 04:13:15 PM
^My FIL's cabinet doors are like that- I think it looks bizaare...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Tsaiko on September 14, 2011, 05:46:20 PM
Keep in mind, this was all one house.

1) The description said it had a driveway for parking. What it had was a backyard with a curb cutout you could use to get your car into the backyard to park. There was no driveway.

2) It was a three bedroom. The walls of the first bedroom were bright, Crayola blue. The carpet was bright blue. During the day if you walked into the room, you instantly looked like a smurf because of the color of the walls. Bedroom two had neon pink walls and neon pink carpet. Standing in that room during the day would make even the palest of people look rosy cheeked. The third bedroom had lemon yellow walls. Three guesses what color the carpet was. I didn't even know carpet came in such a bright yellow.

3) The shower walls were tiled. That was not the issue. The issue was that the tile continued up the back wall until it hit the 12ft ceiling that was in the bathroom.

4) All the second story windows were about a foot lower that what they should have been. So when you stood instead of looking out the window, you were looking at the upper frame of the window. To look out the window itself you had to kind of bend over.

5) The coup de grace was the kitchen. It was a small kitchen. There was the dishwasher and sink. But what about the rest of the appliances? We found the stove and fridge down a short hallway in what I guess was originally a mud room. If you stood at the stove, turned around, and took two steps, you'd wind-up in a small bathroom with a toilet and a door that didn't fully closed.

Yeah, that house just didn't work for us.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on September 14, 2011, 06:41:11 PM
Door knobs in the center are a very classical design because of symmetry and balance - who cares if it works? After all, these same people were placing faux doors besides a fireplace to balance the design.

Whoever did the wiring on my BF's apartment really wanted to kill someone. There are 2 (not 1 - 2!) electrical plugs right outside the shower. One is on the exact place I tend to reach for naturally when leaving the shower. Not fun.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on September 14, 2011, 06:44:33 PM
Whoever did the wiring on my BF's apartment really wanted to kill someone. There are 2 (not 1 - 2!) electrical plugs right outside the shower. One is on the exact place I tend to reach for naturally when leaving the shower. Not fun.

That's so weird! Have you put those plastic plugs in them that are used to baby-proof?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on September 14, 2011, 06:47:22 PM
Whoever did the wiring on my BF's apartment really wanted to kill someone. There are 2 (not 1 - 2!) electrical plugs right outside the shower. One is on the exact place I tend to reach for naturally when leaving the shower. Not fun.

That's so weird! Have you put those plastic plugs in them that are used to baby-proof?

I am trying to convince him to let me just disable them and isolate the wires.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on September 14, 2011, 07:42:25 PM
A friend of mine bought a house that had wiring that was so awful, the people who lived there had their microwave in the bathroom, because having in the kitchen would blow a fuse every time they used it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on September 14, 2011, 08:37:00 PM
A friend of mine bought a house that had wiring that was so awful, the people who lived there had their microwave in the bathroom, because having in the kitchen would blow a fuse every time they used it.

This sounds like a rental house my family lived in when I was in high school.  There were two circuits in the house - the whole house was on one, and the garage was on the other.  I remember one night trying to make Hamburger Helper in my mother's electric skillet, and my sister was trying to dry her hair and the circuit breaker kept tripping.  I finally took the skillet out to the garage and finished cooking on top of the clothes dryer.  This was many years before computers or even microwave ovens, so no telling what would have happened then.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #1aunt on September 15, 2011, 09:14:48 AM
Door knobs in the center are a very classical design because of symmetry and balance - who cares if it works? After all, these same people were placing faux doors besides a fireplace to balance the design.

That reminds me - one of the houses I looked at appeared to have a faux door next to the fireplace in the basement.  I opened it, thinking there way maybe a closet there.  Instead I discovered a narrow staircase leading to what was once a one-car garage.  It had been converted to a long, somewhat narrow room.  We called it the bonus room.

I really liked that house - the kitchen was gorgeous.  But the roof needed to be replaced and the asking price was too high.   Last time I checked it was still for sale. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Stormtreader on September 15, 2011, 09:16:01 AM
Secret chamber?

Library & reading room

Crafts room and supply storage for those crafts

Computer room

Chocolate storage

Master bedroom

Playroom for the grandkids

Hide various collections in it - coins, stamps, music, books, chocolate bunnies..........

The bolded!  :-*

Unless the room was secret even from me, it would be theoretical chocolate storage only :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Twik on September 15, 2011, 10:48:50 AM
2. We looked at a gorgeous house with a finished MIL suite in the basement, granite countertops, brand new hardwood floors and appliances. It was so nice. There was a lovely, big shade tree in the front yard, the lawn was a decent size, and it was on a very quiet street. The drawback was that it backed up to a cemetery. The backyard was fenced in with 4' high chain link fencing, and there was a headstone less than 25' from the fence. When I saw the backyard I shrieked, and DH later told me that he would never live next to a cemetery. His reasoning is hilarious. Mind you, he knows that zombies aren't real, but just in case the dead emerge from their graves, he doesn't want to be the first one eaten.

As long as the house wasn't serviced by a shallow well, I'd love to have a place that backed onto a cemetary!  At least you know the neighbour's will be quiet.  Plus, it's lots of greenspace!  I'm one of those in favour of using cemetaries as parkland - going for walks, even picnicing as long as there are no services going on and one is respectful of the gravesites.

Where I grew up there is a house who has one wall part of the cemetery fence. I assume it used to be the caretaker's house. I can't remember if there is a door on that wall or not - it could have been removed - but there was a window and I once looked into it and saw that the room was empty. I guess if i lived in that house I wouldn't use that room for anything either.

Ever see the "Time Travellers" archeology show from the UK? I loved the episode where the woman discovered while digging in her garden that her house was built over a Saxon cemetery.

She felt it was incredibly cool.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 15, 2011, 02:14:41 PM
Not house hunting, but one of my professors talked about how she had previously lived in a lovely house deigned by a famous architect. However, all the doorknobs were in the middle of the doors instead of on the side.

The best part was that this was a physics professor, married to another physics professor. They were teased by all their friends for having doors that were clearly designed by someone who did not consider the physics of why the doorknobs are where they are.

Weren't the doorknobs to the apartment in Family Affair like that? I always thought it looked odd.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: sbagirl on September 15, 2011, 03:11:24 PM
DH and I stopped at an open house because it was a house we had been curious about and it had been on the market for quite a while.

It was an older house and the current owners had converted a closet on the first floor to a powder room.  The door on this powder room faced the front door of the house, and the toilet was right inside the door.  So, if you were sitting on the toilet and didn’t close the bathroom door, anyone who came up on the porch would be staring right at you. 

The upstairs bathroom was rather narrow.  The sink was on the left, the bathtub was on the right, and the toilet was in the back of the bathroom.  The owners had taken a large slab of marble (about 18” wide) and fastened it to the edge of the bathtub.  I guess they were trying to make it into a bench or something.  This only served to make the bathroom more narrow and you had to turn sideways and shimmy into the bathroom sideways to get back to the toilet.

My favorite feature, though, was this.  There was a closet in the upstairs hall which backed against the end of the bathroom that had the plumbing for the bathtub.  Inside the closet was a pipe, running from the bathroom.  Attached to the pipe was a garden hose, all coiled up inside the closet.  When I asked the real estate agent what that was for, he explained that Mrs. Owner liked to light candles and leave them all over the place and Mr. Owner had a large dog who tended to knock over said candles.  So Mr. Owner installed the hose in the closet as his own “fire extinguisher” and he was extremely proud of that feature. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 15, 2011, 03:25:46 PM
DH and I stopped at an open house because it was a house we had been curious about and it had been on the market for quite a while.

It was an older house and the current owners had converted a closet on the first floor to a powder room.  The door on this powder room faced the front door of the house, and the toilet was right inside the door.  So, if you were sitting on the toilet and didn’t close the bathroom door, anyone who came up on the porch would be staring right at you. 

The upstairs bathroom was rather narrow.  The sink was on the left, the bathtub was on the right, and the toilet was in the back of the bathroom.  The owners had taken a large slab of marble (about 18” wide) and fastened it to the edge of the bathtub.  I guess they were trying to make it into a bench or something.  This only served to make the bathroom more narrow and you had to turn sideways and shimmy into the bathroom sideways to get back to the toilet.

My favorite feature, though, was this.  There was a closet in the upstairs hall which backed against the end of the bathroom that had the plumbing for the bathtub.  Inside the closet was a pipe, running from the bathroom.  Attached to the pipe was a garden hose, all coiled up inside the closet.  When I asked the real estate agent what that was for, he explained that Mrs. Owner liked to light candles and leave them all over the place and Mr. Owner had a large dog who tended to knock over said candles.  So Mr. Owner installed the hose in the closet as his own “fire extinguisher” and he was extremely proud of that feature.

I used to attend a private religious school. Some of the classes were in the church building and some were in a newer, larger building next to the church. Whoever designed the men's room in the church made a glaring mistake. The window to the men's room was to the right of the church steps. And the glass was supposed to look frosted, but it wasn't as frosted as the builders had thought. So yeah, every time a male used that bathroom, you could easily see him from the butt up  . It was even worse if a guy turned on the overhead light. One of my classmates made the mistake of using that bathroom. He didn't know a group of girls went by, did a double take and broke out laughing. Well, until his friends told him later. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jayhawk on September 15, 2011, 03:28:49 PM
My parents' house where I grew up had bright Christmasy red carpet and red flocked wallpaper. They couldn't afford to replace it when they moved in, so my early childhood memories involved playing dolls on the floor of Dante's Inferno.

*snorf*

*Note to self, do not eat yogurt and read ehell*

I went into the ladies' room of a church at which my band was singing.  The carpet was red shag.  The walls were covered in red, gold, and white striped flocked wallpaper.  The lampshades were red, gold, and white to match the wallpaper, and were very frilly and ruffly.  There was a huge gold-framed mirror on one wall.  It looked for all the world like a bordello's waiting room.

and you would know this how???  >:D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on September 15, 2011, 03:34:39 PM
I'm going to look at one on Saturday that lists an "incinerator toilet" among the amenities. I'll report back.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on September 15, 2011, 03:49:54 PM
I'm going to look at one on Saturday that lists an "incinerator toilet" among the amenities. I'll report back.

Please do.   :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on September 15, 2011, 04:20:54 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Shoo on September 15, 2011, 04:35:27 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

Was there a den or office?  Our house has 4 bedrooms, but one of them is downstairs and is used as an office.  If it weren't for the closet in there, you'd never suspect it was really a bedroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on September 15, 2011, 07:24:51 PM
We looked at an old farmhouse that had been built before indoor plumbing was common.  The bathroom had been tucked into the eaves in what was probably storage space before. The shower was under the pitch of the roof and only about 4-and-a-half feet high. The Man would have had to shower on his knees.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on September 15, 2011, 07:53:01 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

Was there a den or office?  Our house has 4 bedrooms, but one of them is downstairs and is used as an office.  If it weren't for the closet in there, you'd never suspect it was really a bedroom.

No extra room at all.  Unless they were counting the completely unfinished basement.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on September 15, 2011, 08:05:26 PM
We looked at an old farmhouse that had been built before indoor plumbing was common.  The bathroom had been tucked into the eaves in what was probably storage space before. The shower was under the pitch of the roof and only about 4-and-a-half feet high. The Man would have had to shower on his knees.
You might not remember the details of the house in Italy.  No shower at all, and the curve of the ceiling meant that your dad couldn't stand upright in the tub anyway.  He had to be very careful getting out after a bath!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Baxter on September 15, 2011, 08:37:06 PM
I looked at a house a few years ago, that had been vandalized and had graffiti all over one of the lounge room walls (the real estate agent called it a "feature wall" - I think he was joking). 

Anyway we walked into the lounge which also had a large fire place and this odd man just sort of slithered out of the fireplace and joined us while we were talking to the real-estate agent.  None of us had noticed him and I still don't know where he came from.  He just greeted us and sat down with a bottle of scotch.  I don't know if he came with the house or not.

Another one was a house my friend lived in.  In the corner of his bedroom was a painting, about 1m or 3ft high, there was a hole behind the painting with a ladder in it that led down to the combined bathroom/kitchen.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 15, 2011, 08:52:20 PM
I looked at a house a few years ago, that had been vandalized and had graffiti all over one of the lounge room walls (the real estate agent called it a "feature wall" - I think he was joking). 

Anyway we walked into the lounge which also had a large fire place and this odd man just sort of slithered out of the fireplace and joined us while we were talking to the real-estate agent.  None of us had noticed him and I still don't know where he came from.  He just greeted us and sat down with a bottle of scotch.  I don't know if he came with the house or not.

Another one was a house my friend lived in.  In the corner of his bedroom was a painting, about 1m or 3ft high, there was a hole behind the painting with a ladder in it that led down to the combined bathroom/kitchen.

That sounds like an episode of Ghost Whisperer. Or one of those urban legends that should end with "and then we passed a portrait that looked just like him, but he was nowhere to be seen  :o "
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Paper Roses on September 15, 2011, 09:17:28 PM
We were shown a house that was listed as having 4 bedrooms and a family room.  Well, one of the bedrooms (the "master bedroom," which makes it even more odd) was in the basement, and it consisted of 4 unfinished walls in the middle of the basement, with a bed in the middle.  Oh, and the ductwork was hanging right above the bed, from a ceiling that was low to begin with.  We joked that if we'd bought that house, every morning would begin with a loud clanging sound, followed by a couple of expletives, followed by all the kids saying, "Oh!  Dad's awake!" 

Then there was the family room.  Which was actually the attached garage, except they had put cheap carpeting down over the cement floor, and outfitted it with a wood-burning stove and a sofa (and maybe a chair or two, I don't remember).  But it still had the garage door at one end, plus it was about a 4 or 5 steps down from the rest of the house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: snowfire on September 15, 2011, 10:38:33 PM
I once looked at a house that was earth sheltered and had been built by a man who did spray on concrete swimming pools.  Each room was sort of a bubble and each was on a different level from the next one by 2-4 steps.  Arranging furniture would have been challenging & I think my carpet guy would have pitched a hissy fit since there were no straight walls anywhere.  The master bathroom had a kind of grotto with narrow steps down into a hot tub.  The realtor & I called the garage the Batcave.  It was two cars wide and three cars deep.  DH would have LOVED it.  It had 15 foot ceilings & he could have installed a hoist.  It also had a canning kitchen right beside the garage.  It even had an indoor swimming pool & hot tub in their own bubble.  All of these were earth covered except for a skylight in the center of each dome.

It would have been kind of a fun house to have, (and my legs would have been in great shape from all the stairs), but it was a bit stiff price for us at the time.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zenith on September 15, 2011, 11:26:25 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

Was there a den or office?  Our house has 4 bedrooms, but one of them is downstairs and is used as an office.  If it weren't for the closet in there, you'd never suspect it was really a bedroom.

There is a house for sale not too far from me and it's online on 2 real estate sites. It reads 2 bedroom on one and 4 bedroom on the other. ??? the house isn't that big and there is no mention of a study/spare alcove or whatever. Odd how do you miscount rooms?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 16, 2011, 01:06:58 AM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

Was there a den or office?  Our house has 4 bedrooms, but one of them is downstairs and is used as an office.  If it weren't for the closet in there, you'd never suspect it was really a bedroom.

There is a house for sale not too far from me and it's online on 2 real estate sites. It reads 2 bedroom on one and 4 bedroom on the other. ??? the house isn't that big and there is no mention of a study/spare alcove or whatever. Odd how do you miscount rooms?

Schrodinger's house. There are 4 rooms in the house, however, opening the door may cause 2 of the rooms to disappear. You won't know until you open the door
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on September 16, 2011, 05:15:32 AM
I visited a friend of a friend once who had a really cute apartment with one odd feature...there were large (Like a foot across) pipes running the length of the bedroom, about 5 feet off the floor. It was perfect for her, since she was a smidgen under 5 feet tall.

I would have had to have a standing appointment with the paramedics to come get me every morning when I whacked my head and knocked myself out cold.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magdalena on September 16, 2011, 06:00:54 AM
Another house I lived in as a kid had a window over the kitchen sink that looked into the family room.  The family room had been added after the house was built and they didn't bother to remove that window.

That set up is very common around here in houses with new rooms attached to kitchens.  They remove the window panes themselves leaving the frame and put a small ledge over the lower edge of the frame.  It promptly becomes relabeled a "pass through" (a way to move food or beverages from the kitchen to the family room or dirty dishes back into the kitchen without leaving the room you're in) and it is considered a selling point!  LOL!

We have one, and it was really planned that way in the 70s when the house was build.
AND, it was one of the things that sold me on the house. I love, love, love it.
Mine can be closed, though.
It's not only practical for passing dishes, it's great for playing with puppets!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Gyburc on September 16, 2011, 06:17:49 AM
This is slightly OT, but the house I grew up in has been on the market for a while now: http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-32901410.html

It's been done up a lot since I was there, but slide 8 is what used to be my room. It's an attic room, and was presumably used by the servants, since I remember there used to be push-button servants' bells in the hall when I was very little. The house dates to somewhere around 1900.

The weird thing about the house is that I'm fairly certain the attic stairs, and possibly the attic too, are haunted. I used to get a really strange feeling at the bottom of the stairs, as if I was being followed. I suppose some of this can be put down to imagination, but Mum used to swear that she saw something there once. And DH - one of the least credulous people I've ever met - was woken up in the middle of the night when he was staying in the other attic room and was convinced someone was there.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jaxsue on September 16, 2011, 09:21:46 AM
This is slightly OT, but the house I grew up in has been on the market for a while now: http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-32901410.html

It's been done up a lot since I was there, but slide 8 is what used to be my room. It's an attic room, and was presumably used by the servants, since I remember there used to be push-button servants' bells in the hall when I was very little. The house dates to somewhere around 1900.

The weird thing about the house is that I'm fairly certain the attic stairs, and possibly the attic too, are haunted. I used to get a really strange feeling at the bottom of the stairs, as if I was being followed. I suppose some of this can be put down to imagination, but Mum used to swear that she saw something there once. And DH - one of the least credulous people I've ever met - was woken up in the middle of the night when he was staying in the other attic room and was convinced someone was there.

Awesome story. You should post it on the ghost story thread on the coffee break forum (the threads several thousand posts long!).

Edited to add: just looked at the pics. Love this house! I saw a lot like this in N. Ireland and fell in love with this arch style.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 16, 2011, 09:34:23 AM
This is slightly OT, but the house I grew up in has been on the market for a while now: http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-32901410.html

That's an amazing house!  I would love that place!  It seems to have a lot of fireplaces -- another thing about it that is so awesome!  It must have been sad to move out of there!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on September 16, 2011, 10:19:46 AM
[We have one, and it was really planned that way in the 70s when the house was build.
AND, it was one of the things that sold me on the house. I love, love, love it.
Mine can be closed, though.
It's not only practical for passing dishes, it's great for playing with puppets!

My 1950's era house had a pass-though before I remodeled it out of existance.  It was never used as a pass-through because the sill was only 4 inches wide, and there was a bench and table on the kitchen side.  It was easier to just carry dishes a couple of more steps into the dining room.  But, as you said, it made a great puppet theater.   :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on September 16, 2011, 10:55:56 AM
I looked at a house a few years ago, that had been vandalized and had graffiti all over one of the lounge room walls (the real estate agent called it a "feature wall" - I think he was joking). 

Anyway we walked into the lounge which also had a large fire place and this odd man just sort of slithered out of the fireplace and joined us while we were talking to the real-estate agent.  None of us had noticed him and I still don't know where he came from.  He just greeted us and sat down with a bottle of scotch.  I don't know if he came with the house or not.

Another one was a house my friend lived in.  In the corner of his bedroom was a painting, about 1m or 3ft high, there was a hole behind the painting with a ladder in it that led down to the combined bathroom/kitchen.

That sounds like an episode of Ghost Whisperer. Or one of those urban legends that should end with "and then we passed a portrait that looked just like him, but he was nowhere to be seen  :o "

At least the ghost brought his own booze.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on September 16, 2011, 10:58:32 AM
I looked at a house a few years ago, that had been vandalized and had graffiti all over one of the lounge room walls (the real estate agent called it a "feature wall" - I think he was joking). 

Anyway we walked into the lounge which also had a large fire place and this odd man just sort of slithered out of the fireplace and joined us while we were talking to the real-estate agent.  None of us had noticed him and I still don't know where he came from.  He just greeted us and sat down with a bottle of scotch.  I don't know if he came with the house or not.

Another one was a house my friend lived in.  In the corner of his bedroom was a painting, about 1m or 3ft high, there was a hole behind the painting with a ladder in it that led down to the combined bathroom/kitchen.

That sounds like an episode of Ghost Whisperer. Or one of those urban legends that should end with "and then we passed a portrait that looked just like him, but he was nowhere to be seen  :o "

At least the ghost brought his own booze.

*snort*
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lilfox on September 16, 2011, 01:58:29 PM
One house I saw had a large living room with fake dark wood paneling halfway up the wall (below the chair rail) and dark wood flooring.  It looked exactly like a small roller rink.

Another house I saw... to me this was just an architectural tragedy. This was a large house built in the 1980s, just shy of McMansion size but with a great large yard and a fabulous lake view, and a short sale so a serious bargain.  We thought hard about buying it but ended up not because it would have cost quite a bit in deep cleaning and remodeling before it would be comfortable to us.  Deep cleaning because yikes!  It was filthy.  Remodeling because the floor plan, esp upstairs, was just terrible.  The master bedroom features were split between two rooms separated by a hallway.  One room had two large closets but no en suite bath, the other had this HUGE bath (lots of wasted space) and no closets.  The hallway main bath was triangular; you entered at a narrow part and it widened on a slant to the tub at the far end.

And downstairs, there was a long skinny half bath and across the hall from that, a long skinny laundry room.  If you walked to the back of the laundry room, you found a full shower stall.  I couldn't figure out why the architect didn't just put all the bathroom stuff in one room and the laundry stuff in the another, since the rooms were about the same size and obviously plumbed.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on September 16, 2011, 07:57:54 PM
Another house I lived in as a kid had a window over the kitchen sink that looked into the family room.  The family room had been added after the house was built and they didn't bother to remove that window.

That set up is very common around here in houses with new rooms attached to kitchens.  They remove the window panes themselves leaving the frame and put a small ledge over the lower edge of the frame.  It promptly becomes relabeled a "pass through" (a way to move food or beverages from the kitchen to the family room or dirty dishes back into the kitchen without leaving the room you're in) and it is considered a selling point!  LOL!

We have one, and it was really planned that way in the 70s when the house was build.
AND, it was one of the things that sold me on the house. I love, love, love it.
Mine can be closed, though.
It's not only practical for passing dishes, it's great for playing with puppets!
Ours was not at all practical.  The kitchen side was above the sink.  The family room was about 3 steps lower than the rest of the house so the window on that side was close to the height of dad's shoulders.   
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 16, 2011, 08:49:41 PM
Then there was the family room.  Which was actually the attached garage, except they had put cheap carpeting down over the cement floor, and outfitted it with a wood-burning stove and a sofa (and maybe a chair or two, I don't remember).  But it still had the garage door at one end, plus it was about a 4 or 5 steps down from the rest of the house.

Oh that reminds me of one house I actually liked except we didn't care for the neighborhood.  This house had the original garage changed into a family room.  However, there was also an open three shower bathroom like you might find at a gymnasium in the back of the room.  The shower area was tiled in bright yellow and there were three faucets, one on each of the three walls.  There were no curtain or separations.  One big shower.

I don't remember if the previous family installed it like that or if there was some reason it came that way.  As far as we were told it was not for anyone who specifically needed an easy access shower room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Jules1980 on September 17, 2011, 12:05:32 AM
DH and I just bought a new house.  Some features are a pass-through that has been walled up on one side and shelves added to the other.  I'm not sure whether I want to 'un-wall' it or use it as a shelf for my collectable barbies.  It also has a hidden room.  It was once a carport storage room, but then the house was added on to and that room ended up in the middle of the house instead of the edge of the carport.  You have to go through the pantry to get to it from inside the house.  And finally, there's a fireplace in the master bedroom. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kherbert05 on September 17, 2011, 04:28:48 PM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
:o Was this in Maryland?  Our realtor told us about a Pink house somewhere in this area where everything was pink.  Walls, rugs, exterior -- even the appliances had been overpainted with pink.   And the sellers insisted on a covenant with prospective buyers that they wouldn't change anything.  It was on the market for years, even though much of that time was a seller's market.

Re pink rooms: my MIL's guest room was pink.  No, that doesn't do it justice.  Nor does grabbing the unfortunate bystander by the lapels and shrieking "It's pink, I tell you, PINK!!!

It was (http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/p.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/i.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/n.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/k.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif) (http://glitter-graphics.com/myspace/text_generator.php).  Walls, carpeting, bedspread.  It was like trying to sleep in a giant Pepto-Bismol bottle.

No Texas.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LyraSilverose on September 17, 2011, 04:56:55 PM
I once looked at a house that was earth sheltered and had been built by a man who did spray on concrete swimming pools.  Each room was sort of a bubble and each was on a different level from the next one by 2-4 steps.  Arranging furniture would have been challenging & I think my carpet guy would have pitched a hissy fit since there were no straight walls anywhere.  The master bathroom had a kind of grotto with narrow steps down into a hot tub.  The realtor & I called the garage the Batcave.  It was two cars wide and three cars deep.  DH would have LOVED it.  It had 15 foot ceilings & he could have installed a hoist.  It also had a canning kitchen right beside the garage.  It even had an indoor swimming pool & hot tub in their own bubble.  All of these were earth covered except for a skylight in the center of each dome.

It would have been kind of a fun house to have, (and my legs would have been in great shape from all the stairs), but it was a bit stiff price for us at the time.

This, right here, is my dream house, almost exactly.  I once drew it, "bubbles" and all, with an indoor grotto-style pool.  Someone stole my house!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoieGirl7 on September 17, 2011, 05:16:50 PM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
:o Was this in Maryland?  Our realtor told us about a Pink house somewhere in this area where everything was pink.  Walls, rugs, exterior -- even the appliances had been overpainted with pink.   And the sellers insisted on a covenant with prospective buyers that they wouldn't change anything.  It was on the market for years, even though much of that time was a seller's market.

Re pink rooms: my MIL's guest room was pink.  No, that doesn't do it justice.  Nor does grabbing the unfortunate bystander by the lapels and shrieking "It's pink, I tell you, PINK!!!

It was (http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/p.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/i.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/n.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/k.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif) (http://glitter-graphics.com/myspace/text_generator.php).  Walls, carpeting, bedspread.  It was like trying to sleep in a giant Pepto-Bismol bottle.

Demanding a covenant like that would be a bigger turn off than the pink!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 17, 2011, 05:47:22 PM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
:o Was this in Maryland?  Our realtor told us about a Pink house somewhere in this area where everything was pink.  Walls, rugs, exterior -- even the appliances had been overpainted with pink.   And the sellers insisted on a covenant with prospective buyers that they wouldn't change anything.  It was on the market for years, even though much of that time was a seller's market.

Re pink rooms: my MIL's guest room was pink.  No, that doesn't do it justice.  Nor does grabbing the unfortunate bystander by the lapels and shrieking "It's pink, I tell you, PINK!!!

It was (http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/p.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/i.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/n.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/k.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif) (http://glitter-graphics.com/myspace/text_generator.php).  Walls, carpeting, bedspread.  It was like trying to sleep in a giant Pepto-Bismol bottle.

No Texas.

I think I saw a house like that on Private Chefs of Beverly Hills. The owner celebrated her pink house and pink wardrobe with a pink themed party. Blech. Too bad the perception filters from Doctor Who aren't real, because then someone could get around that covenant with "Sure, sure, don't worry. The house is now a lovely terracotta color still pink and Barbietastic, Mrs Previous Owner  :-* "
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Gabrielle on September 17, 2011, 06:22:53 PM
I once visited a house in a commune way out in rural town. All well and fine, everything is wooden and natural and it all looks very nice.

And then I went to the bathroom.
The bathroom had 3 clear glass walls. Not one-way glass - completely clear glass. Looking out over a lovely field and to the sea. The view was lovely, but there was something incredibly creepy about being watched by horses while going about my business.

Then as I was washing my hands, a horse trek rode by!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: HorseFreak on September 17, 2011, 06:27:33 PM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
:o Was this in Maryland?  Our realtor told us about a Pink house somewhere in this area where everything was pink.  Walls, rugs, exterior -- even the appliances had been overpainted with pink.   And the sellers insisted on a covenant with prospective buyers that they wouldn't change anything.  It was on the market for years, even though much of that time was a seller's market.

Re pink rooms: my MIL's guest room was pink.  No, that doesn't do it justice.  Nor does grabbing the unfortunate bystander by the lapels and shrieking "It's pink, I tell you, PINK!!!

It was (http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/p.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/i.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/n.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/k.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif) (http://glitter-graphics.com/myspace/text_generator.php).  Walls, carpeting, bedspread.  It was like trying to sleep in a giant Pepto-Bismol bottle.

No Texas.

I think I saw a house like that on Private Chefs of Beverly Hills. The owner celebrated her pink house and pink wardrobe with a pink themed party. Blech. Too bad the perception filters from Doctor Who aren't real, because then someone could get around that covenant with "Sure, sure, don't worry. The house is now a lovely terracotta color still pink and Barbietastic, Mrs Previous Owner  :-* "

I decorated the bathroom of my first apartment entirely in Barbie pink as a joke, but nothing was permanent. My then-BF found this hideous, bright pink bath mat and it was downhill from there to a flamingo shower curtain, pink towels, flamingo accessories and art in pink frames. It was BLINDING and awful, but I loved all its tacky glory. I can't imagine trying to sell a house decorated like that.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on September 17, 2011, 07:31:38 PM
Before I found my current house (I'm thinking of starting a picture thread of it because i love it so much, I hope no one finds that braggy or anything...I just really love my house and want to share it with you all!) I saw one house that, in the bathroom, there was a long, straight, narrow staircase and right at the top was...the toilet.  It was super narrow too; barely more than the width of the toilet tank, making sitting on the can a very precarious perch.  I couldn't even remotely imagine trying to navigate those stupid stairs at 3 in the morning, half-asleep, blurred vision from not having contact lenses in...I'd fall and break my neck, beyond a shadow of a doubt.

I looked at another place that umm...well...It's hard to explain.  Right away walking in, you could tell what the story was.  A paranoid old lady had lived there, probably alone, was sick of a long time and probably died there.  It was a very small house and had not been cleared out by the previous owner's family.  Everything was exactly as it had been.  The decor hadn't been updated since the '60s, the closets were packed with old-lady clothes.  There was a super heavy-duty alarm system and heavy steel bars and shutters over all the windows.  There was a hospital bed in the living room, empty pill bottles all over the place, a bowl inexplicably filled with what had to have been a thousand keys, and the house had no basement...just a creepy trapdoor serial-killer dirt cellar.  The entire house had the creepiest, most uncomfortable vibe of ANY house I'd ever been in in my entire life.  I told my parents that if I bought that place, my power bill would be through the roof because I'd NEVER shut the lights off.

I get the jibblies just remembering.  Ugh.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on September 18, 2011, 06:01:57 PM
Back from house hunting!  An incinerator toilet is exactly what you think it is...instead of flushing things away, it burns them. http://incinolet.com/

Except...the cats drink out of the toilet. Can you imagine the horror of a cat falling into one of these things?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 18, 2011, 06:10:44 PM
Back from house hunting!  An incinerator toilet is exactly what you think it is...instead of flushing things away, it burns them. http://incinolet.com/

Except...the cats drink out of the toilet. Can you imagine the horror of a cat falling into one of these things?

Am I the only one laughing at "And won't hurt your bottom line!" on that website?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 18, 2011, 06:19:41 PM
Back from house hunting!  An incinerator toilet is exactly what you think it is...instead of flushing things away, it burns them. http://incinolet.com/

Except...the cats drink out of the toilet. Can you imagine the horror of a cat falling into one of these things?

I'm going to hell for imagining, ala Craig Ferguson's show, "WHAT DID WE LEARN ON THE SHOW TONIGHT, CRAIG ? MRRROW--*EXPLOSION, FLUSH*"
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: StarDrifter on September 19, 2011, 01:07:05 AM
Yesterday I decided to go trawling for houses in the area that Ace and I want to move into in the next few years.

I found a house that had a remarkably similar colour scheme to the house that the Simpsons live in.

Yes. Purple and white tiles on the kitchen floor, bright orange cupboards with purple doors and blue handles. The fridge was painted green.

The weirdest part? The rest of the house was totally normal, boring beige and neutral colours then BAM! Cartoony kitchen.

Odd.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Zenith on September 19, 2011, 01:38:42 AM
Back from house hunting!  An incinerator toilet is exactly what you think it is...instead of flushing things away, it burns them. http://incinolet.com/

Except...the cats drink out of the toilet. Can you imagine the horror of a cat falling into one of these things?

Am I the only one laughing at "And won't hurt your bottom line!" on that website?

No you are not. Although my inner kid is slightly disappointed that there are no flames to shoot out of the toilet when business is done. I'd buy that, going to the toilet would be awesome then. Water is for wimps, give me flames.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 19, 2011, 08:40:46 AM
My first thought was that this would be perfect for camping!  Then I noticed that electricity is required and that it has to remain plugged in even when not in use.  Pooey!   :-\
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on September 19, 2011, 08:51:50 AM
My first thought was that this would be perfect for camping!  Then I noticed that electricity is required and that it has to remain plugged in even when not in use.  Pooey!   :-\

Yeah, there is evidently some risk of toxic fumes.  The house has been owned by 2 men since 1968 and they only used it seasonally.  I'm not sure 5 people, 3 of whom are female, will be as happy with it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lipli on September 19, 2011, 01:24:29 PM
Before I found my current house (I'm thinking of starting a picture thread of it because i love it so much, I hope no one finds that braggy or anything...I just really love my house and want to share it with you all!) I saw one house that, in the bathroom, there was a long, straight, narrow staircase and right at the top was...the toilet.  It was super narrow too; barely more than the width of the toilet tank, making sitting on the can a very precarious perch.  I couldn't even remotely imagine trying to navigate those stupid stairs at 3 in the morning, half-asleep, blurred vision from not having contact lenses in...I'd fall and break my neck, beyond a shadow of a doubt.


By any chance was it in Atlanta?  I purchased a condo a few years ago and while looking I stumbled upon the oddest thing.  It was in an older building that had been either converted or updated.  It had the most awesome balcony I have ever seen.  Everything was normal/standard - decent living room, nice updated kitchen. BUT, the bedroom was teeny-tiny and didn't have a closet.  If you stuck a double bed in there, you couldn't have fit a dresser. 

But it had the most pimped out bathroom I have ever seen - like something out of MTV cribs.  It had travertine tile on the floor and up the walls, a jacuzzi and a separate shower with multiple shower heads and really awesome lights.  But the toilet was up a few stairs.  You would also walk up the stairs and step into the jacuzzi.  I knew the first night I went to the bathroom, I would have to call an ambulance.  The bathroom belonged in a house 3x what the condo was going for. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on September 22, 2011, 08:13:22 PM
LOL no, it wasn't in Atlanta, it was in Edmonton, Alberta, where I still live.  I honestly regret not taking pictures of it with my phone at least when I saw it, because it sure was...unique!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on September 22, 2011, 08:52:32 PM
I knew a guy in graduate school who built a mountain cabin with his partner. Neither of them had the slightest knowledge or experience with building houses; they bought a book called "How to Design and Build You Own Home." (Old mountain dude down the road would stop by every couple of days and ask, "What page you boys on today?")

They built a pretty decent house, actually. They did put a few features in that you might expect when two young guys build a house together. They didn't have a normal bathroom, for one thing. The bathtub was under a trapdoor in the living room floor, the shower was outside, and the toilet was in the bedroom. They defended the toilet by saying it was really convenient for when you went to bed after imbibing heavily.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 23, 2011, 10:17:39 AM
I wouldn't ever want to sleep near a toilet.  No.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 23, 2011, 10:33:09 AM
I wouldn't ever want to sleep near a toilet.  No.

Especially one someone else was throwing up in!  :-X
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on September 23, 2011, 11:31:08 AM
Heh heh, the Financier keeps trying to talk me into letting him install a toilet in the living room. "You don't understand! The LRT is *the* new decorating thing."
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: 2littlemonkeys on September 23, 2011, 12:10:07 PM
Heh heh, the Financier keeps trying to talk me into letting him install a toilet in the living room. "You don't understand! The LRT is *the* new decorating thing."

LOL!  We had our refrigerator and microwave in our living room for a while (kitchen remodel) and my DH thought that was amazing.  I don't know what he'd do if we had a toilet there too.  He'd never have to leave!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on September 23, 2011, 01:32:32 PM
If you had the toilet built into DH's recliner, then he'd never have to leave THAT, either!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on September 23, 2011, 01:35:42 PM
When we were trailer-shopping earlier this year, we saw a really weird one that had bed and bathroom in back, as usual ... but the bathroom had no wall. Just the bed, the sink, the shower, and the toilet. UGH.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hermanne on September 23, 2011, 03:22:19 PM
Our house (been living here for about 6 months) has an interesting placement for the toilet paper holder in the main bathroom: on the wall behind and a little to the right of the toilet, about 10 inches off the floor. One would have to lean down and reach back for some TP.

This wasn't some afterthought holder, it's tiled on the wall just like the regular wall tiles, so I have to believe it was done the same time.

Who thought that was a good idea!?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 23, 2011, 03:38:13 PM
Our master bath toilet paper holder was originally to the left of and behind the toilet.  Huge pain in the butt.  It's a small bathroom, so I can see how there weren't many options, but they could have found somewhere!  Considering that the master bath is part of a recent addition, you'd think they would have planned for that.  We moved it to the wall just to the right of the toilet.  It's a few feet under the towel bar now, but I'd rather be able to reach the toilet paper, especially since you can't reach the towel bar from the tub anyway...  We put a hook on the door for wet towels so the toilet paper won't get soaked.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Lady Snowdon on September 23, 2011, 04:23:33 PM
Three houses immediately come to mind for this thread!

The first was the home of a doctor/amateur taxidermist.  The upper two stories were totally normal, bland, blah "trying-to-sell" decoration.  The basement...was another story.  As you walked down the carpeted steps, you were greeted by a stuffed lynx at the bottom.  There were various other stuffed animals around the basement, most of which seemed to be endangered (there was the lynx, a bobcat, and a bald eagle down there, plus assorted deer heads).  When you walked into the laundry room, there was a weird little extension that, at first glance, seemed like they might have tried to build a shower back there and only finished halfway (drain and walls, no water piped in).  DH noticed what appeared to be blood in the drain, and we realized that was where the doctor/taxidermist dressed his kills!  I could barely walk on the carpet after that.  Ewwww! 

The second had floor to ceiling wood panelling on the walls upstairs.  That's not that weird, except that the panelling was designed to hide the door of the only bathroom up there.  We found it by accident (the door didn't have a handle, it had a latch that you lifted up to open the door) and just about fell into the bathroom.  That was a little weird...can you imagine have to feel along the walls for the door in the middle of the night?  Then, when we went into the bedrooms, we thought it seemed oddly cold (we were looking in January).  Opened one of the closets to see the roof beams!  There was no insulation in either of the bedrooms up there!  This is in Minnesota, where -20 degree Farenheit temps aren't unknown! 

Third house had murals.  Wallpaper murals that covered entire walls of the house.  There was the forest mural in the living room, complete with animals looking out from behind trees and a small cabin with people chopping wood.  On the wall across from this mural was a full-wall mirror, so the mural was repeated!  Downstairs was the ocean mural, again covering a full wall, and again with a mirror on the other side to replicate it.  Plus many of the walls were painted with forest or ocean motifs (bears, dolphins, etc) that were in bad shape (faded, peeling).  I know that paint/wallpaper is not that hard to deal with, but the idea of having to remove huge swaths of wallpaper and repaint most of the house was too much for DH and I. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ruelz on September 23, 2011, 04:27:08 PM
Our entire house was a bit weird...but the weirdest was the 'den'.  I guess it was intended as an older uncle's suite...so it had a bathroom with a toilet and a tub...but the sink itself was in the bedroom proper.

We took out that bathroom, made it into a walk-in closet (not too much storage in this house), removed the sink and turned it into a 4th bedroom/den.

Not missing that bathroom either...there was a powder room beside it from the hallway that we kept...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on September 23, 2011, 07:35:15 PM
I suppose I could throw in one of the odd things about my own house, Bedside Manor....the attic access is directly above the basement stairs, so in order to get into the attic, I'd have to stand a ladder on the very steep steps leading downstairs.

I don't know that I'll ever find out what that attic looks like LOL.


Also, there is http://greenbuildingelements.com/2008/12/01/hand-build-an-earth-sheltered-house-for-5000/ this, possibly one of the coolest things I've ever seen!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 23, 2011, 08:55:01 PM
Our house (been living here for about 6 months) has an interesting placement for the toilet paper holder in the main bathroom: on the wall behind and a little to the right of the toilet, about 10 inches off the floor. One would have to lean down and reach back for some TP.

This wasn't some afterthought holder, it's tiled on the wall just like the regular wall tiles, so I have to believe it was done the same time.

Who thought that was a good idea!?

I'm getting flashbacks to when Sophia Petrillo confessed to using the toilet backwards (on purpose) for a week
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Mayor Maynot on September 24, 2011, 02:23:21 AM
Ooh that Green Built House for $5,000 reminds me of Shrek's house in the swamp!  How cool!!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hobish on September 24, 2011, 04:44:44 AM
I knew a guy in graduate school who built a mountain cabin with his partner. Neither of them had the slightest knowledge or experience with building houses; they bought a book called "How to Design and Build You Own Home." (Old mountain dude down the road would stop by every couple of days and ask, "What page you boys on today?")

They built a pretty decent house, actually. They did put a few features in that you might expect when two young guys build a house together. They didn't have a normal bathroom, for one thing. The bathtub was under a trapdoor in the living room floor, the shower was outside, and the toilet was in the bedroom. They defended the toilet by saying it was really convenient for when you went to bed after imbibing heavily.

The toilet was in the bedroom or a toilet was in the bedroom? That is a crucial difference in my mind.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: whiterose on September 24, 2011, 09:16:13 AM
When I was house hunting around 3 1/2 years ago, one of the townhouses had a storage space with a door below the staircase. I immediately called it a "Harry Potter closet", since Harry Potter slept in one of those little rooms. The realtor did not get the reference.

Another townhouse was a short sale. It had broken doors, among other problems. It had a hot tub in the screened porch- but still did not make it worth it. The seller was creepy- showing us a mugshot of Frank Sinatra and telling us why he got arrested. Realtor and I literally ran out of the house!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoieGirl7 on September 24, 2011, 12:52:57 PM
When I was house hunting around 3 1/2 years ago, one of the townhouses had a storage space with a door below the staircase. I immediately called it a "Harry Potter closet", since Harry Potter slept in one of those little rooms. The realtor did not get the reference.

My son has a Harry Potter closet--and he and his roommates call it that!
 
It's carpeted inside and from time to time they will joke about renting it out!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on September 24, 2011, 02:40:56 PM
I knew a guy in graduate school who built a mountain cabin with his partner. Neither of them had the slightest knowledge or experience with building houses; they bought a book called "How to Design and Build You Own Home." (Old mountain dude down the road would stop by every couple of days and ask, "What page you boys on today?")

They built a pretty decent house, actually. They did put a few features in that you might expect when two young guys build a house together. They didn't have a normal bathroom, for one thing. The bathtub was under a trapdoor in the living room floor, the shower was outside, and the toilet was in the bedroom. They defended the toilet by saying it was really convenient for when you went to bed after imbibing heavily.

The toilet was in the bedroom or a toilet was in the bedroom? That is a crucial difference in my mind.

It's been 20 years, but the one in the bedroom is the only one I remember.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on September 24, 2011, 03:02:07 PM
Not while house-hunting.  A house was being built across the street and I went in and looked. 

In the master bathroom there was a tub built for 2.  Walls on 3 sides.  The faucet and valves were on the front, in the middle .  You have to climb over them to get in the tub.  Seriously dangerous.  One slip and 9 months later you give birth to a bar sink. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on September 25, 2011, 09:24:30 PM
My parents' house where I grew up had bright Christmasy red carpet and red flocked wallpaper. They couldn't afford to replace it when they moved in, so my early childhood memories involved playing dolls on the floor of Dante's Inferno.

*snorf*

*Note to self, do not eat yogurt and read ehell*

I went into the ladies' room of a church at which my band was singing.  The carpet was red shag.  The walls were covered in red, gold, and white striped flocked wallpaper.  The lampshades were red, gold, and white to match the wallpaper, and were very frilly and ruffly.  There was a huge gold-framed mirror on one wall.  It looked for all the world like a bordello's waiting room.

and you would know this how???  >:D

I read a lot.   ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 26, 2011, 10:14:04 AM
When I was house hunting around 3 1/2 years ago, one of the townhouses had a storage space with a door below the staircase. I immediately called it a "Harry Potter closet", since Harry Potter slept in one of those little rooms. The realtor did not get the reference.

My apartment had a closet like that under the stairs, complete with door.  I've always thought it was an excellent use of space.  In my apartment it was very boring looking, but I have seen them in older homes where it does look like a neat little hiding area. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: 2littlemonkeys on September 26, 2011, 02:55:43 PM
If you had the toilet built into DH's recliner, then he'd never have to leave THAT, either!

Yeah, but then he'd be the one responsible for cleaning it out.  Because I wouldn't go near it with a barge pole.  :-X ;D

Green Eyed Hawk, that house was kind of cool!  It rather reminded me of The Shire.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hobish on September 26, 2011, 06:55:36 PM
I knew a guy in graduate school who built a mountain cabin with his partner. Neither of them had the slightest knowledge or experience with building houses; they bought a book called "How to Design and Build You Own Home." (Old mountain dude down the road would stop by every couple of days and ask, "What page you boys on today?")

They built a pretty decent house, actually. They did put a few features in that you might expect when two young guys build a house together. They didn't have a normal bathroom, for one thing. The bathtub was under a trapdoor in the living room floor, the shower was outside, and the toilet was in the bedroom. They defended the toilet by saying it was really convenient for when you went to bed after imbibing heavily.

The toilet was in the bedroom or a toilet was in the bedroom? That is a crucial difference in my mind.

It's been 20 years, but the one in the bedroom is the only one I remember.

Eep! How very jail cell-esque  :P

When I was house hunting around 3 1/2 years ago, one of the townhouses had a storage space with a door below the staircase. I immediately called it a "Harry Potter closet", since Harry Potter slept in one of those little rooms. The realtor did not get the reference.

My apartment had a closet like that under the stairs, complete with door.  I've always thought it was an excellent use of space.  In my apartment it was very boring looking, but I have seen them in older homes where it does look like a neat little hiding area. 

There was one in my very first apartment. I slept in it.  :) It was actually pretty comfy-cozy.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 26, 2011, 07:23:08 PM
I'm trying to think if I've ever seen a house with stairs that didn't have a closet under them!   ???

It's a perfect place for kids to have a 'hangout' if it's big.  If it's little, it's a wonderful place for your vacuum cleaner and your mop to live.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on September 26, 2011, 07:41:23 PM
We had a closet under the stairs growing up, but it was just a normal closet (and yes, the vacuum lives there).  The ceilings were really high, so they put a closet in at the tallest part, and right next to it is the door to the basement, which has the slanted ceiling.  Our current setup is a little odd, but there's a sort of chest height crawlspace under our stairs, that you access from the basement.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Rohanna on September 26, 2011, 09:28:53 PM
Mine doesn't, because the underneath of the main floor stairs is the headroom for the basement stairs (does that make visual sense?)- there's a little shelf when you go down the basement steps where the floor of the closet would have been.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on September 27, 2011, 08:08:54 AM
I'm trying to think if I've ever seen a house with stairs that didn't have a closet under them!   ???

There's no closet under the stairs on the main floor of my house, but that's likely because the living room is tiny and the wall space is necessary for furniture. There's no closet under the basement stairs, but there is a storage area.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on September 27, 2011, 09:49:54 AM
My brother had a town house with no closet under the stairs - open cement slabs on wrought iron - the area under the stairs was too open for any storage.  I think that he might have had a desk or bookshelves under there - it's been years since he sold it............
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Piratelvr1121 on September 28, 2011, 11:40:26 PM
Some things always make me go  ??? when I'm house hunting.

The first is family homes with carpeted eating areas. Seriously? Judging by the bedrooms, there are toddlers in the home.
Carpets? Under the chairs? Hope they own a rug cleaner!

The other one is carpeted bathrooms. By this I mean shag carpeting everywhere, even around the commode.
Splashed biologicals on carpet and no way to clean it?
Eww. Just...eww.

My favourite was an acreage we wanted to check out. The realtor looked at us oddly and said "Do you like trains?" in what I can only describe as a psychoticly cheery tone.
Turns out there was a train track about 50 feet from the front door.
A bit too close for me, thanks.

Before we bought this house we were living in a townhouse that was carpeted everywhere but the bathrooms, kitchen and laundry room.  And it was not an eat in kitchen, either.   And we have two boys who were not very good at remembering that gravity does not have a happy effect on fruit punch. :P
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #1aunt on September 29, 2011, 03:17:43 PM
When my brother was looking for a house a couple years ago they opened a closet in the basement and found a mound of dirt with a twig cross stuck in it. 

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on September 29, 2011, 03:40:54 PM
When my brother was looking for a house a couple years ago they opened a closet in the basement and found a mound of dirt with a twig cross stuck in it.

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEPPPPPP!

Um...how big was the mound?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on September 29, 2011, 05:20:05 PM
When my brother was looking for a house a couple years ago they opened a closet in the basement and found a mound of dirt with a twig cross stuck in it.

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEPPPPPP!

Um...how big was the mound?

As big as a sparrow from the garden?
As big as a loved dog?
As big as the MiL?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on September 29, 2011, 05:22:15 PM
As big as the mound you typically find in the Native American burial ground you didn't know the house was built on?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 29, 2011, 05:34:52 PM
As big as that creepy, transparent person standing behind you ?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Vall on September 29, 2011, 07:43:48 PM
That reminds me of the movie Arsenic and Old Lace.  I think I'll watch that this weekend.
How big was the mound?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #1aunt on September 30, 2011, 11:09:36 AM
It was basically a pile of dirt on top of a cement floor.  About as much dirt as would fit in a child's sand-castle-building bucket.    Big enough for a pet bird.

What's also funny about it is when I was looking for houses 18 months later I was sitting with my Realtor (the same one my brother used) looking at the listings of available homes.  The house was still on the market.  No, I didn't buy it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 30, 2011, 12:29:39 PM
That reminds me of a house a friend of the family owns.  It is another Victorian and the basement has a dirt floor.  According to "Aunt" Kate, they brought a metal detector down there once and found a box which was full of papers and old brass keys.  They couldn't read the papers anymore and they have no idea what all the keys are for.  They also said the former owner told them a story about the original owners being buried down there.  They are not so sure they believe that.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 30, 2011, 12:52:19 PM
That reminds me of a house a friend of the family owns.  It is another Victorian and the basement has a dirt floor.  According to "Aunt" Kate, they brought a metal detector down there once and found a box which was full of papers and old brass keys.  They couldn't read the papers anymore and they have no idea what all the keys are for. 

To me, THAT would be awesome!!  I wonder if they tried the chemical process where you supposedly can restore writing, or at least reveal any imprint (dent) made by the pen?  What a great mystery!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on September 30, 2011, 02:00:42 PM
That reminds me of a house a friend of the family owns.  It is another Victorian and the basement has a dirt floor.  According to "Aunt" Kate, they brought a metal detector down there once and found a box which was full of papers and old brass keys.  They couldn't read the papers anymore and they have no idea what all the keys are for. 

To me, THAT would be awesome!!  I wonder if they tried the chemical process where you supposedly can restore writing, or at least reveal any imprint (dent) made by the pen?  What a great mystery!!

As far as I know they never tried anything like that.  I wonder if they still have it.  I'm apparently more curious about it than they are.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on September 30, 2011, 03:51:28 PM
We went to an open house at Victorian home in a neighborhood of houses in that style. The woodwork, parquet flooring, beveled glass built in china cabinets and the like had all been maintained. However, the basement was divided into several rooms, most painted light blue with sea creatures - primitive or cartoony style - painted on them and the words to "We All Live in a Yellow Submarine" printed in a wavy line all around the walls.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on September 30, 2011, 04:04:10 PM
We went to an open house at Victorian home in a neighborhood of houses in that style. The woodwork, parquet flooring, beveled glass built in china cabinets and the like had all been maintained. However, the basement was divided into several rooms, most painted light blue with sea creatures - primitive or cartoony style - painted on them and the words to "We All Live in a Yellow Submarine" printed in a wavy line all around the walls.

Hm.  Day care or drug den?   :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on September 30, 2011, 04:22:22 PM
We went to an open house at Victorian home in a neighborhood of houses in that style. The woodwork, parquet flooring, beveled glass built in china cabinets and the like had all been maintained. However, the basement was divided into several rooms, most painted light blue with sea creatures - primitive or cartoony style - painted on them and the words to "We All Live in a Yellow Submarine" printed in a wavy line all around the walls.

That sounds amazing!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on September 30, 2011, 04:25:04 PM


Hm.  Day care or drug den?   :D

Are you saying they're not the same thing?   :P
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on September 30, 2011, 08:55:01 PM
This is a little OT, but the Victorian papers made me think of it and y'all will get a kick out of it. Happened near me:http://www.gwinnettdailypost.com/news/2011/sep/22/store-owner-woman-sold-us-live-bomb-unknowingly/

Summary-a woman took a box of stuff to the Army-Navy store, that was left in her attic by the previous owners. It included a 1939 Japanese mortar. The store guy spent a couple of days pondering it, then decided he should probably call the bomb squad. It ended up being taken away by the Air Force, who won't say what happened to it after that.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Bijou on September 30, 2011, 11:11:25 PM
The reactions to a wallpaper in my grandparents house when it was being sold. Having grown up in the house I'd never really noticed it and no one else in the family had either, it was in a little used craft room. They were 1 inch high little black stick figures on a white background dancing around little stick fires. Doesn't sound bad but they were stick figures of both genders and they were quite graphic and realistic about which genders they were. I mean really graphic, certain things round and third err legs included. I think my grandmother had a cheeky sense of humor as that room was her personal craft room. I wonder where she found the wallpaper.

When we were first told about it by an eagle eye potential buyer there was a bit of a uproar about what to do about it. In the end it was left alone but dang it was funny. 30 years and no one had noticed. Wish I had a picture. Apparently it was the first thing to go when the new owners took possession.
Funny how no one noticed.  Maybe it was just that no one could believe their eyes.  Sounds like your grandmother had a sense of humor.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: White Dragon on October 09, 2011, 04:18:48 PM
It was basically a pile of dirt on top of a cement floor.  About as much dirt as would fit in a child's sand-castle-building bucket.    Big enough for a pet bird.

What's also funny about it is when I was looking for houses 18 months later I was sitting with my Realtor (the same one my brother used) looking at the listings of available homes.  The house was still on the market.  No, I didn't buy it.

Not quite house-hunting, but close.

DH and I were moving to a new community and looked into building a house.
So we were looking at acreage lots and other properties.

We found a really, really lovely lot, high on the river bank with a fantastic view. As we explored the land, we paid attention to the local geography with an eye to building sites.
A ravine ran through the property, surrounded by trees. As we explored this little copse, we were confronted by a *huge* wooden cross. As in probably about 6' tall.
It was ornately carved and had a person's name inscribed.

DH and I were both  ???
I was absolutely sure it was a grave.

We asked the realtor, who was as surprised as we were.
Turned out that it was simply a memorial to the seller's daughter, who had died tragically some years before.

We didn't end up buying the property, and the realtor did ask the family to relocate the cross.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on October 10, 2011, 09:33:47 AM
I think the worst thing we saw this past weekend was a pepto-bismal pink living room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on October 10, 2011, 09:36:40 AM
I think the worst thing we saw this past weekend was a pepto-bismal pink living room.

If that's the worst thing you saw out there, you're doin' all right.  ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on October 10, 2011, 09:42:02 AM
I think the worst thing we saw this past weekend was a pepto-bismal pink living room.

If that's the worst thing you saw out there, you're doin' all right.  ;)

That particular house is still on our list.  I can paint over the pink. I'm just baffled that anyone ever picks it on purpose.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wonderflonium on October 10, 2011, 09:42:40 AM
I think the worst thing we saw this past weekend was a pepto-bismal pink living room.

If that's the worst thing you saw out there, you're doin' all right.  ;)

That particular house is still on our list.  I can paint over the pink. I'm just baffled that anyone ever picks it on purpose.

I should have had you over to see my kitchen.  ;D In my defense, it's only 1 accent wall, and it makes me smile.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on October 10, 2011, 10:13:59 AM
I think the worst thing we saw this past weekend was a pepto-bismal pink living room.

If that's the worst thing you saw out there, you're doin' all right.  ;)

That particular house is still on our list.  I can paint over the pink. I'm just baffled that anyone ever picks it on purpose.
coughcoughyourgrandmothercoughcough
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: suzieQ on October 10, 2011, 10:19:28 AM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.

Ha!  I'd happily let my kids paint their rooms whatever color they want, as long as they're the ones that helped repaint it when they move out or get tired of it :D

When I was little, my parents let me draw on my bedroom walls. Shocked my friends when they came over.

The room was redone when I was older.

When we moved into our current house, we painted with chalkboard paint on both kids walls - made a paint frame around each chalkboard and the rest of that wall was painted normally. Installed a bit of molding under each chalkboard to hold the chalk and erasers.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on October 10, 2011, 12:20:26 PM
My DH's grandparents had shag indoor/outdoor carpeting in every room, including bathrooms. I hope it has been removed by now, but 30+ years of usage had to have upped the ick factor.

We looked at a house with 10+ acres here in Central Florida and it had once been a tropical fish farm, with ponds. The entire yard was a swamp from years of sitting vacant, the back porch had the washer and dryer, and there were huge holes in the ceiling inside the house. When behind the house, you could hear the alligators. The creepiest were the torn apart dolls in every room.

The house we almost bought was beautiful, but there were stray cats living in the attic and all the toilet tanks had been filled to the rim with sand and rocks.

We looked at another that had the cabinets removed by the former owner, which is illegal in the state of Florida.

Edited because I really do know my grammar.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on October 10, 2011, 01:15:09 PM
Ahh, made it through the whole thread. I loved reading what everyone has seen! We were house hunting for a year and a half before finding our current home.

One house really stuck out and we actually put an offer in on it. Two bedrooms could only be accessed through the laundry room. We were going to put the washer and dryer in a wide closet and expand the two bedrooms, so the space outside would be more like a hallway. It also had a strange garage situation. The previous owners had turned the half basement into a garage, kind of. The stairs still came down in the middle of it and parking a car in there would have been difficult. Then the other half of the garage (the legal half) was down a step or two but still connected. So if you had two cars parked in there, one would be higher than the other.

Another that was kind of strange was the gorgeous Victorian. It needed a ton of work but the price was right. The garage was up a set of about 20 stairs in the backyard. Trying to bring in groceries and kids would have been a nightmare, especially in the winter.

In our current house, we have windows in the family room that lead to the master bedroom and the main bathroom in the house. When the previous owners put the family room on the back of the house they just didn't seal those. They also painted the brick white and I'm debating sandblasting it or something so the original color is exposed.

The main bathroom doesn't have any electrical outlets in it and like some others in the thread, the toilet paper holder is behind and to the right. We don't even use it...we just keep a roll on the counter. The bathroom downstairs just has a toilet in the middle of it and if you have the seat and lid down, you can't close the door.

The other strange thing is one of the bedrooms upstairs has no ductwork in it. Not so much an issue in the milder seasons but we definitely have to get it fixed before winter.

Oh! Two last things. The baseboards are not uniform at all. In one room we have three different types. And finally, the doorknobs are all kinds of screwy. My 11 year old son has had two snap in half in his hand just by trying to open the door and a third snapped in mine. We were planning on replacing them anyway, but I was hoping it could wait longer.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on October 10, 2011, 02:35:00 PM
They also painted the brick white and I'm debating sandblasting it or something so the original color is exposed.

Look into this carefully!  I've heard that sandblasting can ruin brick - it takes off the outer layer and then the brick just falls apart.  They did this to a century building in a town near me and the entire facade is crumbling.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on October 10, 2011, 03:38:55 PM
They also painted the brick white and I'm debating sandblasting it or something so the original color is exposed.

Look into this carefully!  I've heard that sandblasting can ruin brick - it takes off the outer layer and then the brick just falls apart.  They did this to a century building in a town near me and the entire facade is crumbling.

Ack! Thanks for the heads up. I thought I had seen it done on a home improvement show but they definitely didn't mention that little tidbit. It's so far down on the list that it probably won't get done before we sell four or five years from now anyway.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LyraSilverose on October 10, 2011, 04:01:03 PM
They also painted the brick white and I'm debating sandblasting it or something so the original color is exposed.

Look into this carefully!  I've heard that sandblasting can ruin brick - it takes off the outer layer and then the brick just falls apart.  They did this to a century building in a town near me and the entire facade is crumbling.

Ack! Thanks for the heads up. I thought I had seen it done on a home improvement show but they definitely didn't mention that little tidbit. It's so far down on the list that it probably won't get done before we sell four or five years from now anyway.

They do make brick sealant that can be used after removing paint, but it's not 100% reliable.  For a cheaper, easier option, you could try sanding it by hand (which often will leave little bits of paint in the deeper pockets of the brick, but that can actually be really pretty) and then sealing it.  My aunt did that with a brick fireplace in her living room years ago, and it looks really nice to this day.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Animala on October 11, 2011, 06:56:06 PM
I have several stories for this one.  At one time I worked for a company and did the labor side of foreclosures and evictions.  There were so many odd things.  I think my favorite was a beautiful old mansion out in the country that the owner decided to rent out.  I think it had 10 bedrooms, each with it's own bath, a movie screening room, a real wine cellar, an atrium a huge pool, maid's rooms but the owner bought it for the oil rights and didn't care about the house.  The house had a series of renters and we were hired to remove the latest tenant who was being evicted.  After we removed their property, which was mostly gone already, we were allowed to look around and I discovered a room in one of the attics.  I didn't know what it was so I went and asked one of the guys.  They had all sorts of ideas for what it was but they were just teasing me so I asked the boss.  It was a grow room.  I had no idea what they looked like.  Not surprisingly, it was also empty.

It really was a gorgeous house and after a few more tenants the owner just left it empty and squatters caught it on fire so it's gone now.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: whiterose on October 11, 2011, 08:29:00 PM
This one is not particularly interesting or creepy- but still worth mentioning because of how impractical it is.

I saw a lovely townhouse with a beautiful courtyard in Andalusian style- complete with tiles and black fence. But the inside was disappointing. The master bedroom's bathroom had a very small shower the size of the ones in cruise ship cabins- in other words, could not be replaced with a tub. And the second bedroom did have a full size shower or possibly tub- but was way smaller and had an angled roof. That, and the kitchen was rather small. Otherwise, lovely townhouse.

One of the things that drew me towards my condo was that the master bedroom has a garden tub :) I think it was meant just for me.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on October 13, 2011, 09:29:07 AM
I just remembered a couple more, both used as nursing homes before going on the market. The first one, it seems that someone miscalculated the stairs or something because once you got to the top, you could either take one stair in front to get to the bathroom, one stair to the left for a bedroom and one stair to the right for another bedroom. Wouldn't be so bad if the landing wasn't so tiny. The landing also had a drain in it.

The second one we never actually went to see since it was an hour away from DH's office and just wasn't feasible with only one car. Anyway, it had 13 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms and 3 kitchens, one for each floor. It was last listed for $60,000! It was fun to imagine what we could do with that much space though.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on October 13, 2011, 10:51:10 AM
I just remembered a couple more, both used as nursing homes before going on the market. The first one, it seems that someone miscalculated the stairs or something because once you got to the top, you could either take one stair in front to get to the bathroom, one stair to the left for a bedroom and one stair to the right for another bedroom. Wouldn't be so bad if the landing wasn't so tiny. The landing also had a drain in it.

My uncle's house is like that. We stayed with him and his wife for a couple of weeks when I was younger (around 9/10), and I cannot tell you how many times I tripped over because I forgot it was another step up.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on October 13, 2011, 12:29:21 PM
I just remembered a couple more, both used as nursing homes before going on the market. The first one, it seems that someone miscalculated the stairs or something because once you got to the top, you could either take one stair in front to get to the bathroom, one stair to the left for a bedroom and one stair to the right for another bedroom. Wouldn't be so bad if the landing wasn't so tiny. The landing also had a drain in it.

The second one we never actually went to see since it was an hour away from DH's office and just wasn't feasible with only one car. Anyway, it had 13 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms and 3 kitchens, one for each floor. It was last listed for $60,000! It was fun to imagine what we could do with that much space though.

What an odd arrangement -- ESPECIALLY for a nursing home where people presumably already would have balance and coordination problems with walking and stair climbing!

The other house, just wow!  I'd love to have seen that one.  For $60,000 dollars?  Was it built in the middle of a highway or on a swamp or something? It would almost be worth it for a bunch of couples to get together and chip in 5 or 10 thousand each and use it as a party house!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on October 13, 2011, 12:29:53 PM
I just remembered a couple more, both used as nursing homes before going on the market. The first one, it seems that someone miscalculated the stairs or something because once you got to the top, you could either take one stair in front to get to the bathroom, one stair to the left for a bedroom and one stair to the right for another bedroom. Wouldn't be so bad if the landing wasn't so tiny. The landing also had a drain in it.

The second one we never actually went to see since it was an hour away from DH's office and just wasn't feasible with only one car. Anyway, it had 13 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms and 3 kitchens, one for each floor. It was last listed for $60,000! It was fun to imagine what we could do with that much space though.

I know what would happen - we'd have every deadbeat family member wanting to move in with us.  While we don't have many, the ones we have are never moving in with us.  Even when I was single and owned a two-bedroom mobile home people were wanting to move in with me.

In the house my grandpa lived in for 50 years, there was a vent in the landing floor that, if you looked through it, you could see the living room.  It was probably so that the upper floor could get heat, but we used it as an intercom (not that my mother needed one). 

We're in the market for a house right now, but we don't need 13 bedrooms since there are only the two of us and two cats.  We also want a larger kitchen than we have now because if we're both in the kitchen at the same time we tend to collide. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on October 13, 2011, 12:55:35 PM
What an odd arrangement -- ESPECIALLY for a nursing home where people presumably already would have balance and coordination problems with walking and stair climbing!

The other house, just wow!  I'd love to have seen that one.  For $60,000 dollars?  Was it built in the middle of a highway or on a swamp or something? It would almost be worth it for a bunch of couples to get together and chip in 5 or 10 thousand each and use it as a party house!!

It looked like it was on a normal street! That area is pretty inexpensive anyway. The listing is gone now, but you can still see a few pictures at the link below. I agree with you, perfect party house!

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/ (http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on October 13, 2011, 12:58:34 PM
What an odd arrangement -- ESPECIALLY for a nursing home where people presumably already would have balance and coordination problems with walking and stair climbing!

The other house, just wow!  I'd love to have seen that one.  For $60,000 dollars?  Was it built in the middle of a highway or on a swamp or something? It would almost be worth it for a bunch of couples to get together and chip in 5 or 10 thousand each and use it as a party house!!

It looked like it was on a normal street! That area is pretty inexpensive anyway. The listing is gone now, but you can still see a few pictures at the link below. I agree with you, perfect party house!

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/ (http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/)

It's beautiful!  In awful shape inside, but still beautiful.  It would be a shame to waste it on partying, but I could totally see two or three couples simply buying it to each take a floor.  The nursing homes here are all very boring.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on October 13, 2011, 01:15:16 PM


It looked like it was on a normal street! That area is pretty inexpensive anyway. The listing is gone now, but you can still see a few pictures at the link below. I agree with you, perfect party house!

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/ (http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/)

Wow!  I would have LOVED that house! 

But isn't it interesting that there was apparently absolutely no attempt whatsoever to clean up the place before the pictures were taken?  Unmade beds?  Vacuum cleaner in the middle of the room?  Junk just around all over the place?  I doesn't seem the photographer really had any interest in making the place look desirable.  Funny in a way, yet sad.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: CakeBeret on October 13, 2011, 01:19:57 PM
What an odd arrangement -- ESPECIALLY for a nursing home where people presumably already would have balance and coordination problems with walking and stair climbing!

The other house, just wow!  I'd love to have seen that one.  For $60,000 dollars?  Was it built in the middle of a highway or on a swamp or something? It would almost be worth it for a bunch of couples to get together and chip in 5 or 10 thousand each and use it as a party house!!

It looked like it was on a normal street! That area is pretty inexpensive anyway. The listing is gone now, but you can still see a few pictures at the link below. I agree with you, perfect party house!

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/ (http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/)

That is a fantastic house. I would love to renovate something like that...*sigh*...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfqueen13 on October 13, 2011, 01:36:32 PM
What an odd arrangement -- ESPECIALLY for a nursing home where people presumably already would have balance and coordination problems with walking and stair climbing!

The other house, just wow!  I'd love to have seen that one.  For $60,000 dollars?  Was it built in the middle of a highway or on a swamp or something? It would almost be worth it for a bunch of couples to get together and chip in 5 or 10 thousand each and use it as a party house!!

It looked like it was on a normal street! That area is pretty inexpensive anyway. The listing is gone now, but you can still see a few pictures at the link below. I agree with you, perfect party house!

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/ (http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/500-Meade-St-Monongahela-PA-15063/2132398799_zpid/)

At that price, I'm guessing foundation damage, mold, a bad roof or some combination of the three.  $62k is only the very tip of the financial iceberg.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on October 13, 2011, 01:54:36 PM
Quote
At that price, I'm guessing foundation damage, mold, a bad roof or some combination of the three.  $62k is only the very tip of the financial iceberg.

Okay, you got me curious...turns out it was a foreclosure and sold on eBay for $35,000! So I guess that answers the questions about why it was so cheap and why the lousy pictures.

http://www.cheaphomereport.com/News-Mansion-Selling-on-eBay.html (http://www.cheaphomereport.com/News-Mansion-Selling-on-eBay.html)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on October 13, 2011, 04:20:48 PM
$60K for a house that isn't 250 sq ft?  Or a real dump?  Around here the only houses less than $100K are the ones that are either 250 sq ft or a real dump.  If I was single I would have gone for that 250 sq foot one, but Mr. Sirius and I collide with each other enough in 980 sq ft.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on October 13, 2011, 08:26:43 PM
My house is a little odd in that it has only one bedroom...I think that's a factor in why it took so long to sell in the crazy market we had going on here at the time...apparently it'd been on the market since October of 2010 and I bought it in July of this year.

One bedroom is no good for family, and while it would make a great starter house for a young couple, a lot of couples intend on having kids, and one bedroom doesn't cut it in that situation, either.  However, I'm single, with no intention of starting a family at all ever...just me and my furkids, so it's perfect for us.  The stars just aligned right for me that day I guess, because I got a steal of a deal on it...my aunt and uncle had come to see it with me, as they own several houses that they rent out and it would probably be a good investment property and they were flabbergasted when I told them how much I'd been able to wrangle the bank down on it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Master_Edward on October 14, 2011, 04:14:32 PM
A niece of mine and her husband (newlyweds of a little over a year) just bought their first house. I was finally inside and got to see it last weekend as they are doing some fixing up before they move in. And me and some other family went over to help out. The house is nice, it's got 3 bedrooms and 1 and a half bathrooms. The half bath is off the kitchen with just a toilet and a sink. The house also has an attached garage with a door in the kitchen going out to the garage. The odd thing to me is the half bathroom and the garage share a wall. And there's a small window in this wall that looks out into the garage and vice versa. It's high up in the wall so if you were in the bathroom you'd need to stand on a chair to see out of it, not that that's going to happen, the half bath is tiny! And when you go out the door of the kitchen into the garage you have to go down a few steps, I think it was 3 maybe four. So the garage floor is lower than the flooring of the rest of the house and the window is pretty high in the wall on that side too so no one in the garage is able to see anyone in the bathroom anyway. I just don't know why they'd put a window in the wall there and so high up. I think it's really strange.

Ed.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on October 14, 2011, 04:44:44 PM
Perhaps the garage was either added later or adopted from a carport.  My kitchen has a window facing the carport because that was in the house plans, which didn't have a carport.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kherbert05 on October 14, 2011, 04:47:49 PM
Ed. My aunt has a similar window in the "maid's half bath" off the kitchen in the laundry room. I think magicdomino might be right that the garage was a late addition to the house. It is so small that there isn't even a sink - there is a large sink in the laundry room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Master_Edward on October 14, 2011, 11:26:24 PM
You know you're probably right. I mean that does make sense. I still think it's odd that whoever added on the garage didn't cover up the window when they did it though.

Ed.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ZaftigWife on October 15, 2011, 12:32:21 AM
My dryer is in my kitchen next to my fridge.  The washer is about 12 feet away in the hallway.

My washer is in the kitchen, in a corner locked in by the stove and sink counter.  My dryer is in the basement.

(I'd kill for your root cellar, though!  Even with the scary carrot.)

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LazyDaisy on October 15, 2011, 04:59:36 PM
If the tiny window opens, it is probably for ventilation.

My brother and SIL lived in an older house with a bathroom right by the front door (think of where would be a logical place for a coat closet and put a full bathroom instead) with a big window right over the sink that opened onto the porch (so no mirror in the bathroom at all). Luckily it was frosted glass, but I just didn't like using it at all -- too public.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on October 15, 2011, 07:07:09 PM
My dryer is in my kitchen next to my fridge.  The washer is about 12 feet away in the hallway.

My washer is in the kitchen, in a corner locked in by the stove and sink counter.  My dryer is in the basement.

(I'd kill for your root cellar, though!  Even with the scary carrot.)

My washer and dryer were on opposite corners of the basement for years.  The washer was installed long before the dryer.  When my parents finally bought a dryer, it was installed next to the fuse box, so that wiring didn't have to be run all the way across the basement.  Since there isn't any plumbing on that side of the house, the washer couldn't be moved.  It was like that for about 40 years, until I had a bunch of work done in the basement.  Now the dryer is perpendicular to the washer, because the wall with the plumbing isn't an outside one, and the dryer needed an outside wall for venting.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xallanthia on October 18, 2011, 12:33:50 PM
I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

The house I grew up in was custom-built, so I am sure Mom and Dad did this on purpose. All three of us had our own rooms. Mine and my sister's rooms locked from the inside. Our brother's locked from the outside.

Haven't finished the thread yet, but one of my MIL's sons (can't remember just now if it was DH or BIL) had to be locked into his room at night in order to fall asleep, and yes with the lock on the outside.  If they didn't lock it he would get up and check and come downstairs.  Only when locked in the room would he get bored enough to eventually put himself to bed.  This was ~age 4?

Not sure how they dealt with middle-of-the-night bathroom use; MIL is a night owl so it's possible she would unlock the door after he was asleep.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blewellyn on October 18, 2011, 01:28:24 PM
Not my househunting - but my gran lived in a house with a "secret" room. It was really bizarre. On the first floor, there was a room at the back of the house, that you could only get to through a small door (around 3 feet high) in the corner of the spare bedroom. It was a decent sized room, but it didn't have any normal sized doors.



Is it possible that your Gran's house was part of the underground railroad?  We have a number of houses built in the 19th century in these parts with secret rooms, underground tunnels, false bottoms in window seats, etc.

B
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on October 18, 2011, 01:32:46 PM
I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

The house I grew up in was custom-built, so I am sure Mom and Dad did this on purpose. All three of us had our own rooms. Mine and my sister's rooms locked from the inside. Our brother's locked from the outside.

Haven't finished the thread yet, but one of my MIL's sons (can't remember just now if it was DH or BIL) had to be locked into his room at night in order to fall asleep, and yes with the lock on the outside.  If they didn't lock it he would get up and check and come downstairs.  Only when locked in the room would he get bored enough to eventually put himself to bed.  This was ~age 4?

Not sure how they dealt with middle-of-the-night bathroom use; MIL is a night owl so it's possible she would unlock the door after he was asleep.

My brother's room had been added onto the side of our house. To get to it you either had to go through my room or my parents' room. (You can imagine all the screams of "DON'T GO THROUGH MY ROOOOOOMMMM!!" for over a decade.) It had doors into my room and the bathroom, and both of them locked from the outside. So, I could have locked my brother in his room anytime I felt like it. Oddly, I never did...as much as we fought, there were some lines I just didn't cross.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on October 18, 2011, 01:35:16 PM
Not my househunting - but my gran lived in a house with a "secret" room. It was really bizarre. On the first floor, there was a room at the back of the house, that you could only get to through a small door (around 3 feet high) in the corner of the spare bedroom. It was a decent sized room, but it didn't have any normal sized doors.



Is it possible that your Gran's house was part of the underground railroad?  We have a number of houses built in the 19th century in these parts with secret rooms, underground tunnels, false bottoms in window seats, etc.

B

Very, very unlikely. It was built in the 1970s, in a small village in the English countryside.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on October 18, 2011, 02:44:26 PM
I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

The house I grew up in was custom-built, so I am sure Mom and Dad did this on purpose. All three of us had our own rooms. Mine and my sister's rooms locked from the inside. Our brother's locked from the outside.

Haven't finished the thread yet, but one of my MIL's sons (can't remember just now if it was DH or BIL) had to be locked into his room at night in order to fall asleep, and yes with the lock on the outside.  If they didn't lock it he would get up and check and come downstairs.  Only when locked in the room would he get bored enough to eventually put himself to bed.  This was ~age 4?

Not sure how they dealt with middle-of-the-night bathroom use; MIL is a night owl so it's possible she would unlock the door after he was asleep.

One of my great-nieces had to be locked in her room with a chain lock.  She was sneaking out in the middle of the night to raid the kitchen and leaving the refrigerator door open all night.  With the chain lock, she could open the door enough to call out if she needed to use the bathroom, or had a bad dream. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #borecore on October 18, 2011, 02:44:42 PM
Starting with an oddity from my parents that wasn't an oddity to us: They converted our screened-in porch, with walls and carpeting, but not heating. And they didn't change the doors, so the room that became my bedroom at age 4 (complete with rose-pink carpet and pale pink walls) had an industrial exit door and glass doors hung with translucent curtains into the original house's dining room. I can't imagine how much I would have hated the lack of privacy if I lived in it much past age 7, when we moved.

Then my aunt's house they renovated over the course of 15 years but never finished, which included a closet that was 6 feet off the ground, 3 feet tall and 5 feet deep. No wiring in there, no real way to use it for anything but a bit of shallow storage. They built a full bath on the main floor and hung it with a door that did not close! You could not shower or use the toilet without it opening all the way -- the only thing I found that worked was shoving a full suitcase against it. They built a 2nd story with just the master bed and bath, but with no bedroom door and the walls built in such a way that there was no door-size space to hang one.

I rented a studio/'back house' once that was one large room and one small bathroom. The large room was MAROON, 100% maroon. From the floor to about hip height, it was upholstered in maroon satin fabric, tamped down  by molding. Then the high, high ceiling was covered in maroon satin fabric, too, with a few skylights and mirrored rainbow light fixtures. Between them was maroon paint done in a swishy style, which barely covered up dozens of darts scores people had written on the wall over the years. The bathroom was a lovely light brown.

My boyfriend lives in a house that has a little hallway niche that his roommate says was probably once for a built-in telephone, with a small shelf for a phone book, but he uses it as a religious altar, so that's more neat than bad.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on October 18, 2011, 04:39:46 PM
I'm going to rat myself out before some Ehellion posts ten years from now.   ;)  The master bathroom doesn't have a door.  It has a beautiful glass block wall that curves around, so the area gets light but is still private.  (The light is important because while the term "master bathroom" sounds grand, mine is a tiny place carved out of a bedroom.)  The lack of a door doesn't bother me as I live alone, but it probably wouldn't be very attractive to someone with children.

Speaking of children, there are holes in the bedroom closet walls.  They were intended as fire escapes for children; the old casement windows were difficult for small children to open, instead they could crawl through to either the living room or our parents' bedroom to escape.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: General Jinjur on October 19, 2011, 06:12:51 AM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: General Jinjur on October 19, 2011, 06:20:57 AM
A house that glowed Pink. The shag carpet was pink. The walls were "white" with a tint of pink. I had to get out of there because it made me feel sick.
:o Was this in Maryland?  Our realtor told us about a Pink house somewhere in this area where everything was pink.  Walls, rugs, exterior -- even the appliances had been overpainted with pink.   And the sellers insisted on a covenant with prospective buyers that they wouldn't change anything.  It was on the market for years, even though much of that time was a seller's market.

Re pink rooms: my MIL's guest room was pink.  No, that doesn't do it justice.  Nor does grabbing the unfortunate bystander by the lapels and shrieking "It's pink, I tell you, PINK!!!

It was (http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/p.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/i.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/n.gif)(http://text.glitter-graphics.net/sc/k.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif)(http://dl3.glitter-graphics.net/empty.gif) (http://glitter-graphics.com/myspace/text_generator.php).  Walls, carpeting, bedspread.  It was like trying to sleep in a giant Pepto-Bismol bottle.

Demanding a covenant like that would be a bigger turn off than the pink!

Would that even be enforceable? And does that mean the former owners would be dropping in randomly for pink checks?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on October 19, 2011, 01:15:21 PM

My boyfriend lives in a house that has a little hallway niche that his roommate says was probably once for a built-in telephone, with a small shelf for a phone book, but he uses it as a religious altar, so that's more neat than bad.

My house (which we now use as a rental property) has one of those.  I kept a striking knick-knack on it (a Japanese antique papier-mâché tiger toy on wheels). I draped the nook in artificial flowering vine.  it was very cool!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ruelz on October 19, 2011, 01:46:32 PM
That reminds me of one gorgeous 1920s house we looked at years ago.  We didn't buy it - it was at the top of our price range and needed major renovations...

But it had attic access through the master bedroom.  The door to the attic was raised about 3' off the ground with no steps.  Then you walked through the attic, which was  papered with 'naked lady' wallpaper (not kidding) to get to the far end...

Where there was a sauna...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hobish on October 19, 2011, 02:09:50 PM
This happened to a friend of mine.  She and her husband rented a lovely old farmhouse.  The owner had lived there with 3 teenagers, and allowed them to paint their rooms however they liked.  Sound good?  It should, except:

Boy's room 1 was painted all over - ceiling, walls, etc - in camo.  Huge patterned camo.
Boy's room 2 was painted all over black, with a glow in the dark moon in one corner covering the ceiling and both walls
Girls room was painted day glo pink, with giant fluorescent flowers

It took her many, many, many buckets of primer to cover all that fluorescing.

Ha!  I'd happily let my kids paint their rooms whatever color they want, as long as they're the ones that helped repaint it when they move out or get tired of it :D

When I was little, my parents let me draw on my bedroom walls. Shocked my friends when they came over.

The room was redone when I was older.

When we moved into our current house, we painted with chalkboard paint on both kids walls - made a paint frame around each chalkboard and the rest of that wall was painted normally. Installed a bit of molding under each chalkboard to hold the chalk and erasers.

I am dying to do that in my back bathroom, the one we affectionately call the indoor-outhouse (it has a storm door leading into the back yard).

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #borecore on October 19, 2011, 02:45:42 PM
The house I grew up in is totally weird. Though when we moved in, it was identical to every other 2-story 3-bedroom house in the neighborhood, it now has:
-- A fourth bedroom made from the attic over the garage, in which I slept as a kid. The only access is through one of the original bedrooms (my baby sister's). We knocked out the back of the original closet (goodbye, sister's closet!) and used the door as bedroom access. The room has a ceiling that's about 3 feet high at its lowest point, but the other side of the room is about 5 feet at its lowest. The 3-foot-high side has a small door for access to a verrrrry short, narrow attic in the remaining space. That room has been lilac; olive green; edged in red with light gray with charcoal gray bars (think original Nintendo theme); and now a different color on each wall, all deep earth tones, with several silhouette murals. Mom let each of her kids in turn do whatever they wanted in there!

-- An 'office' made by walling in about 1/3 of the 2-car garage. Terrible insulation. It has been half baby blue, half mint green, with a vintage car border; canary yellow; and now deep red with a gorgeous wind-blown tree mural.

-- One of the bedrooms (used to be light blue with an outer space border, then dark pink and I think it's now fire-engine red) is hung with a nonfunctional crystal chandelier in one corner.

-- The fireplace is surrounded by a half-wall of brick, painted metallic dark bronze.

-- It floods really, really easily. They're pros at pulling up carpet!

-- The backyard shed looks normal, but when you go inside, you realize that it's made half of what had been a tall kids' playhouse a decade ago.

-- Nothing but grass will grow in the middle of the spacious front yard. Nothing.

Despite all that oddness, it looks great 99% of the time, as my mom has an amazing knack for decorating. "I'm doomed. I will never be able to sell it," she says -- so she better make the best of it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on October 19, 2011, 06:18:16 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on October 19, 2011, 06:36:19 PM
We looked at a supposed 3 bedroom house.  Two bedrooms upstairs, and we can't work out whether the third was supposed to be the basement, or the room attached to the living room, which had a huge archway instead of a door.

You don't need closets here to make a bedroom, but I'm sure there are escape requirements.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on October 19, 2011, 07:04:17 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire. 

Very similar requirements here (Southern Ontario). You have to have two fire exits to call it a bedroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on October 19, 2011, 07:21:03 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire.

That's actually where we were looking.  Our RE Agent couldn't tell us where the 4th BR was supposed to be, either.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: General Jinjur on October 20, 2011, 11:43:41 AM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire.

I know bedrooms don't have to have closets here (our place right now has three bedrooms, and one closet), but the window is a must. The pantry did have a small window at the end, and there were also windows in the basement, so I guess that qualified. But it's kind of like someone putting out a personal ad claiming to be 6'5 and athletic when they're actually 4'2 and a marshmallow; do they think no one would notice that the realtor thinks they wouldn't mind sleeping in the kitchen?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RainhaDoTexugo on October 20, 2011, 01:27:56 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire.

I know bedrooms don't have to have closets here (our place right now has three bedrooms, and one closet), but the window is a must. The pantry did have a small window at the end, and there were also windows in the basement, so I guess that qualified. But it's kind of like someone putting out a personal ad claiming to be 6'5 and athletic when they're actually 4'2 and a marshmallow; do they think no one would notice that the realtor thinks they wouldn't mind sleeping in the kitchen?

It's pretty funny, what they thing they can get away with.  We had a giant pantry at our old apartment, and even then, I don't think you could make a bedroom out of it.  I did know a guy who had a "1 bedroom" apartment that was a living room, with a closet exactly the size of a twin bed, with about two feet of space at the end of the bed to allow you to reach the bathroom, which was supposedly the bedroom.

We saw one house that had odd closets jutting out into the room, and the realtor told us that it was because somewhere along the line, someone was under the impression that you needed closets for it to officially be a bedroom, so they just tacked some on. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xallanthia on October 20, 2011, 01:49:21 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire.

I know bedrooms don't have to have closets here (our place right now has three bedrooms, and one closet), but the window is a must. The pantry did have a small window at the end, and there were also windows in the basement, so I guess that qualified. But it's kind of like someone putting out a personal ad claiming to be 6'5 and athletic when they're actually 4'2 and a marshmallow; do they think no one would notice that the realtor thinks they wouldn't mind sleeping in the kitchen?

It's pretty funny, what they thing they can get away with.  We had a giant pantry at our old apartment, and even then, I don't think you could make a bedroom out of it.  I did know a guy who had a "1 bedroom" apartment that was a living room, with a closet exactly the size of a twin bed, with about two feet of space at the end of the bed to allow you to reach the bathroom, which was supposedly the bedroom.

We saw one house that had odd closets jutting out into the room, and the realtor told us that it was because somewhere along the line, someone was under the impression that you needed closets for it to officially be a bedroom, so they just tacked some on.

My first apartment was like this.  It was part of a cut-up Victorian house and was billed as a "2-bedroom" but the rooms were arranged all in a line: Front Door - Bedroom 1 - Kitchen - ?? (Dining?) - Bedroom 2, with the bathroom to one side connecting with both the ?? room and the 2nd bedroom.  The back door opened out of the bathroom.

Fortunately it was just me living there, and then me and DH after we married, so we used them as was originally intended when the house was cut up: living room, dining room, bedroom.  How do we know the original intention?  When we bought our bed, the sales guy at the furniture store was the son of the previous owner of the house, had been part of the team that set it up as apartments, and had lived in our apartment after he finished college!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on October 20, 2011, 02:25:42 PM
I forgot about the house that had a cutout in the wall big enough for a twin mattress (and enough space for someone to sleep on it). Since it took up no floor space and left plenty for playing, my kids thought that was great! I think I'd feel claustrophobic though.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on October 20, 2011, 03:46:53 PM
How could I forget my own little apartment. It is a one bedroom, combined living/dining room, kitchen and 2 full baths. Why do I have more bathrooms than bedrooms? Beats me. One is used as a large closet.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xallanthia on October 20, 2011, 04:12:09 PM
I forgot about the house that had a cutout in the wall big enough for a twin mattress (and enough space for someone to sleep on it). Since it took up no floor space and left plenty for playing, my kids thought that was great! I think I'd feel claustrophobic though.

I am all about small spaces.  When I was a child I would hide in the closet when I was upset.  I would have been all about that kind of bed/cave/nest.  Still would, in fact, if I were single.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Moray on October 20, 2011, 04:37:50 PM
Who needs to be single? I still have a cave and I've been co-habitating with my partner in crime for almost 4 years now. My cave is a short but long (It would be a walk-in closet, except the ceiling is only 4.5' tall) closet in the bedroom we use as an office. I have equipped it with a beanbag, plenty of blankets, a couple of small bookshelves, a good lamp and a radio/cd player.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hobish on October 20, 2011, 04:46:14 PM
One house we looked at had a bathroom that was so narrow you had to turn to the side to enter.  I think that was the same house that had some light switches that were at knee-height.

One of the things that really drove me crazy when we were looking for a house -- the listings that said the house had four bedrooms but only had three -- maybe these 4th bedrooms were all secret rooms!

My friend bought a house that was listed as a 4-bedroom. Two of those were upstairs, one was the pantry (with no door) and the other was the basement  ???
That wouldn't fly here (Maryland, USA).  To be listed as a bedroom, it must be finished, have a closet, and a second exit like a window or another door, so that you could get out in case of fire.

That is federal, not just Maryland. If it doesn't have a closet it isn't a bedroom. Realtors might call it a bedroom, but when you try to have it appraised to sell the place, nope. No closet, no bedroom. Other things vary from state to state (like ceiling height) but that one is everywhere. Also basement rooms do not count. The square footage contributes to the overall value; but it is not part of the overall gross living area so any rooms down there are extra. If you have 3 bedrooms on the main level and 2 in the basement it is a 3 bedroom house.
Thus concludes our appraisal class for today.  :)


Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on October 20, 2011, 06:05:40 PM
That is federal, not just Maryland. If it doesn't have a closet it isn't a bedroom. Realtors might call it a bedroom, but when you try to have it appraised to sell the place, nope. No closet, no bedroom. Other things vary from state to state (like ceiling height) but that one is everywhere. Also basement rooms do not count. The square footage contributes to the overall value; but it is not part of the overall gross living area so any rooms down there are extra. If you have 3 bedrooms on the main level and 2 in the basement it is a 3 bedroom house.
Thus concludes our appraisal class for today.  :)
How does one distinguish a basement from a lower level?  Our house is a split foyer; you enter on a landing, and go up 7 steps to the upper level (3 bedrooms, kitchen, dining room, 2 baths) or down 6 steps to the lower level (family room, 1 large bedroom, laundry, 1 bath).  At the back of the house is a sliding door to the back yard from the family room, so the lower level is not entirely belowground.

So do I have a 4 bedroom house, as it was sold to us, or only a 3 bedroom?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on October 20, 2011, 07:13:43 PM
My house is similar to yours - 2 bedrooms upstairs, 1 downstairs.  It was listed as a 2+1 bedroom house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Morrigan on October 20, 2011, 09:16:58 PM
We looked at a supposed 3 bedroom house.  Two bedrooms upstairs, and we can't work out whether the third was supposed to be the basement, or the room attached to the living room, which had a huge archway instead of a door.

You don't need closets here to make a bedroom, but I'm sure there are escape requirements.

If you were looking at a house in my hometown (that we looked at recently), I'd guess that we looked at the same house.  There was no three bedroom that we could see...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kingsrings on October 20, 2011, 10:29:57 PM
Whomever looked at my family house when it's been sold 2x since we all moved out would come across the oddity of a tub, but no shower, in the upstairs hallway bedroom. Where was this shower? All the way downstairs, in the tiny bathroom off of the kitchen. No rhyme or reason behind that one....
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Information_queen on October 23, 2011, 01:02:06 AM

My boyfriend lives in a house that has a little hallway niche that his roommate says was probably once for a built-in telephone, with a small shelf for a phone book, but he uses it as a religious altar, so that's more neat than bad.

My house (which we now use as a rental property) has one of those.  I kept a striking knick-knack on it (a Japanese antique papier-mâché tiger toy on wheels). I draped the nook in artificial flowering vine.  it was very cool!

My friend's house has a phone nook. It's adorable! She's really into vintage stuff, so she got a vintage phone (well, it *looks* vintage) and uses her nook for it's original purpose. I think it's awesome.

I forgot about the house that had a cutout in the wall big enough for a twin mattress (and enough space for someone to sleep on it). Since it took up no floor space and left plenty for playing, my kids thought that was great! I think I'd feel claustrophobic though.

My in-laws house has a cutout like that, about 4 feet up on the wall, with three smaller cut outs below it. It was my husband's room when he was a kid. He still thinks it's all kinds of awesome.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on October 23, 2011, 10:35:39 AM
My house has a phone nook too!  Here, I'll show you:

(http://i138.photobucket.com/albums/q273/GreenEyedHawk/Kitchen5.jpg) 

The little white space between the two doors is a phone nook, and that red rectangle below?  A now-defunct milk door. 

I've been on the lookout for an old-timey looking phone from around the same time the house was built, just for decoration since I don't have a landline.  The house was built in 1922.  That area of the wall mystified everyone who saw that photo, including me, until I actually came to see the house in person.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on October 23, 2011, 10:54:02 AM
My house has a phone nook too!  Here, I'll show you:

(http://i138.photobucket.com/albums/q273/GreenEyedHawk/Kitchen5.jpg) 

The little white space between the two doors is a phone nook, and that red rectangle below?  A now-defunct milk door. 

I've been on the lookout for an old-timey looking phone from around the same time the house was built, just for decoration since I don't have a landline.  The house was built in 1922.  That area of the wall mystified everyone who saw that photo, including me, until I actually came to see the house in person.

I've never heard of a milk door before. Around here, dairies put the milk in insulated boxes on the doorstep. This thread is so educational!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on October 23, 2011, 01:29:05 PM
There are attic accesses inside both of my kids' closets....little attic-like areas under the eaves, but not in the true attic above the second floor.

The previous owners had a 10-year-old daughter, and inside the one in her closet she had set up a little "cave" with a Disney princess comforter. The comforter was still there after they moved out, leading me to think her parents never knew it was there.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on October 23, 2011, 02:24:59 PM
There are attic accesses inside both of my kids' closets....little attic-like areas under the eaves, but not in the true attic above the second floor.

The previous owners had a 10-year-old daughter, and inside the one in her closet she had set up a little "cave" with a Disney princess comforter. The comforter was still there after they moved out, leading me to think her parents never knew it was there.

When I was little a lot of my friends had those.  Adults used to refer to them as "dead storage" and put stuff in there that was occasionally but rarely used -- like Christmas decorations and stuff.

But my friends nearly all had made them into private little kid-size-only hideaways.  The doors were too little to provide easy access for adults.  They were PERFECT!   ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on October 23, 2011, 02:50:55 PM
There are attic accesses inside both of my kids' closets....little attic-like areas under the eaves, but not in the true attic above the second floor.

The previous owners had a 10-year-old daughter, and inside the one in her closet she had set up a little "cave" with a Disney princess comforter. The comforter was still there after they moved out, leading me to think her parents never knew it was there.

When I was little a lot of my friends had those.  Adults used to refer to them as "dead storage" and put stuff in there that was occasionally but rarely used -- like Christmas decorations and stuff.

But my friends nearly all had made them into private little kid-size-only hideaways.  The doors were too little to provide easy access for adults.  They were PERFECT!   ;D
I did too!  My dad converted an attic into two bedrooms and a bathroom. Both bedrooms had storage areas there, and one bedroom even had a bed closet -- the bed was on wheels and you could push it back into the storage area and close the doors on it.  Gave you lots of room to play.  I hung blankets all around in my "cave", including one  over the door so that no light would show outside when I was reading instead of sleeping as I was supposed to be.  ;D 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on October 24, 2011, 01:47:42 PM
I had a half-sized attic door in my room (also shared room with my sister until she went to college). It was used as actual, traditional attic storage, including the obligatory old-fashioned steamer trunk, which is now my bedside table.

It was not a magic land of make-believe. It was South-Texas-uninsulated-unclimate-controlled-bloody-hot.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LEMon on October 27, 2011, 08:40:07 PM
I always thought the extra room in a house in Colorado was interesting.  To build the house the construction had to remove some rock to make room for the floorplan.  Well, some of the rock broke a little more than they expected.  So in the basement there was this door that opened into an underground .. grotto (for lack of a better word).  Three sides were regular wood frame, back wall was the rock.  The rock, of course being rock and doing what rocks do, curved into the space making a curved back wall and uneven floor.  Always very cool in temperature.  I wonder what the folks who have it now think.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on October 27, 2011, 08:43:38 PM
That would be fantastic as a cold cellar.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LEMon on October 27, 2011, 09:36:42 PM
In the winter, it might be a very cold cellar.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: LEMon on October 27, 2011, 11:26:13 PM
Pearls before Swine comic on October 27.  I wonder if he reads Ehell.

http://www.gocomics.com/pearlsbeforeswine
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on October 28, 2011, 09:20:17 AM
In the winter, it might be a very cold cellar.

I don't think so.  The rock would probably keep the temperature above 0 C (32 F).  So winter, it would probably be 2 to 5 C and in summer, more like 10 C, perfect for a root cellar.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xallanthia on October 28, 2011, 10:32:01 AM
I always thought the extra room in a house in Colorado was interesting.  To build the house the construction had to remove some rock to make room for the floorplan.  Well, some of the rock broke a little more than they expected.  So in the basement there was this door that opened into an underground .. grotto (for lack of a better word).  Three sides were regular wood frame, back wall was the rock.  The rock, of course being rock and doing what rocks do, curved into the space making a curved back wall and uneven floor.  Always very cool in temperature.  I wonder what the folks who have it now think.

In my relatives' house in Italy, there is a finished basement with stairs that go down to their wine cellar, which is a *cave*.  I don't think it's a natural one, but it's all stone walls, floor, ceiling...  very rustic.  Which is appropriate for their small town!

The other day DH was daydreaming about what he'd like if we ever have the money to build our own home.  He wants to build in secret passages and/or tunnels just for the joy of discovery for our children and grandchildren.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: General Jinjur on October 28, 2011, 07:53:44 PM
A friend bought this awesome vintage house, and we went to check it out. It was a 1.5 bath, and they dared us to find the .5 - we couldn't. Turns out the "half bath" was a toilet at the top of the basement stairs. Like, you opened the door, to your right were stairs, and to your left was a toilet  ??? A strange feature indeed.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kingsrings on October 28, 2011, 08:28:46 PM
Speaking of toilets in weird places - some friends live in a big, vintage 30's house. The downstairs bathroom is in the kitchen! Literally in it. The daughter was telling me it leads to many awkward moments...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Julia Mercer on October 29, 2011, 07:58:10 PM
One townhouse I looked at, the bathroom in the basement had the toilet on a throne, lol, meaning you stepped up to use it, it was real weird, that's for sure!

Jules
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on October 30, 2011, 03:33:25 PM
One townhouse I looked at, the bathroom in the basement had the toilet on a throne, lol, meaning you stepped up to use it, it was real weird, that's for sure!

The basement toilet in my MIL's house is like that -- probably has to do with the position of the septic line (and successfully flushing the waste out of the house)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: turtleIScream on October 31, 2011, 04:13:23 PM
Oh, where to start?

When we were buying our first home, we looked at over 50 houses in person. One was right around the corner from my ILs, but the listing looked decent, and the price was great, so we went to check it out. We walk in, and everything looks really nice - new floors, cabinets, appliances. The paint and wallpaper were not to our liking, but not a deal breaker, so we continue the walkthrough. Walk to the slider off the dining room, open it, and about fall 6 feet to the ground because they never got around to building the deck. And that's 6 feet because it's a daylight basement, so we head over to the basement stairs, which aren't there.  Just a big opening in the floor.  They sellers apparently ran out of money while trying to renovate.

Another one near my ILs was listed as a two car attached garage. We pull up, and the driveway is only 10' wide, leading to a 9' garage door. Curious, we actually did go inside, to find a garage that is 35' deep, so two cars DO fit! But, there was no back garage door or driveway that would allow egress for the first car.

One we looked at a few weeks ago - gorgeous master bath. Beautiful tile work, glass shower, garden tub. No door. I sat on the commode, looked through the glass walls of the shower to the mirrored closet doors and waved to my husband who was sitting on the bed. He was able to see me and wave back.  We are pretty open in our family, but there are certain activities that call for some modicum of privacy. Given the layout and materials used near the opening, adding a door would not be feasible. That same house squeezed a tub/shower into a hall bath, right in front of the standard unfrosted window that looked out over the busy street. We have no plans to move, but we pass this house all the time, and it looks beautiful from the outside, so we stopped in during an open house. Seeing it at least cured me of wishing it weren't on a busy street or that we were in a position to move.

Our first house we bought had a telephone nook in the back hall, and the house I grew up in had a milk door. I wish our current house had architectural character. Sigh.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: CakeBeret on October 31, 2011, 04:31:54 PM
Oh, where to start?

When we were buying our first home, we looked at over 50 houses in person. One was right around the corner from my ILs, but the listing looked decent, and the price was great, so we went to check it out. We walk in, and everything looks really nice - new floors, cabinets, appliances. The paint and wallpaper were not to our liking, but not a deal breaker, so we continue the walkthrough. Walk to the slider off the dining room, open it, and about fall 6 feet to the ground because they never got around to building the deck. And that's 6 feet because it's a daylight basement, so we head over to the basement stairs, which aren't there.  Just a big opening in the floor.  They sellers apparently ran out of money while trying to renovate.

This reminds me of one of the very first houses we viewed. It was in a neighborhood of $150-250k homes and was listed for $35k. As we were looking for something in good, move-in condition, that was a big red flag right there, but we decided to be good sports and take a tour. This house featured a full basement, and the master bedroom and bathroom were located in the basement. Jacuzzi tub! Large master suite! Huge walk-in closet! screamed the listing. Only...the sole access to the basement was a tiny, spindly spiral staircase...in the middle of the kitchen floor. Literally, the opening to the staircase was just a hole in the floor. The staircase was so small that I (a US size 10 at the time) could barely fit down it, and I had the rails on both sides squeezing my hips.

Also, the "jacuzzi tub" was not functional and filled with debris, the "large master suite" had walls that looked like they'd been painted by a schizophrenic on an acid trip (floor to ceiling murals of...I don't even know what), and the "huge walk-in closet" was an unfinished room with a hanging bar mounted in it.

Somebody had done a bad, bad job renovating that poor house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dazi on October 31, 2011, 05:01:17 PM
I thoought of two more.

A friend of mine grew up in a house that had all the phone jacks nearly to the ceiling and all the electrical outlets were about halfway up the wall.

Another friend of mine lived in a house withe a secret room.  It was big room too, nearly directly in the middle of the house.  The way it was set up you just didn't realise there was enough room for it to be there.  The access panel was a very small door near the bottom of the V of the stair case in a storage closet.  I always wondered if that house had been part of the Underground Railroad.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on October 31, 2011, 05:03:20 PM


That same house squeezed a tub/shower into a hall bath, right in front of the standard unfrosted window that looked out over the busy street. We have no plans to move, but we pass this house all the time, and it looks beautiful from the outside, so we stopped in during an open house. Seeing it at least cured me of wishing it weren't on a busy street or that we were in a position to move.

Our first house we bought had a telephone nook in the back hall, and the house I grew up in had a milk door. I wish our current house had architectural character. Sigh.

One of the houses I lived in as a child was very old and someone had obviously built a few additions over the years. The bathroom was between the living room and the kitchen, and there was a small step down, as if someone didn't judge the floor right when they built the addition. Or maybe part of the house settled. I don't know. The bathroom also had a nice big window to the side yard. A previous owner put frosted vinyl sticky paper over the window. ;D My parents left it there.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xallanthia on October 31, 2011, 05:31:03 PM
When we were buying our first home, we looked at over 50 houses in person. One was right around the corner from my ILs, but the listing looked decent, and the price was great, so we went to check it out. We walk in, and everything looks really nice - new floors, cabinets, appliances. The paint and wallpaper were not to our liking, but not a deal breaker, so we continue the walkthrough. Walk to the slider off the dining room, open it, and about fall 6 feet to the ground because they never got around to building the deck. And that's 6 feet because it's a daylight basement, so we head over to the basement stairs, which aren't there.  Just a big opening in the floor.  They sellers apparently ran out of money while trying to renovate.

This happened to my parents when they renovated their house, but they put on cheap, small decks (in one case, just steps) from those doors so they'd still be useable.

The huge expensive wrap-around deck that crosses the entire back of the house went in two years later.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on October 31, 2011, 05:34:10 PM
Oh, where to start?
One we looked at a few weeks ago - gorgeous master bath. Beautiful tile work, glass shower, garden tub. No door. I sat on the commode, looked through the glass walls of the shower to the mirrored closet doors and waved to my husband who was sitting on the bed. He was able to see me and wave back.  We are pretty open in our family, but there are certain activities that call for some modicum of privacy. Given the layout and materials used near the opening, adding a door would not be feasible. That same house squeezed a tub/shower into a hall bath, right in front of the standard unfrosted window that looked out over the busy street. We have no plans to move, but we pass this house all the time, and it looks beautiful from the outside, so we stopped in during an open house. Seeing it at least cured me of wishing it weren't on a busy street or that we were in a position to move.

My housemates and I looked at a student house which had a bathroom on the ground floor, directly opposite the front door. Only, instead of, I don't know, a wall, it had a clear glass partition separating it from the hallway. You could see right into it - the toilet and the shower were completely on show to anyone coming through the front door or the door to the living room, which was at a right-angle to it.

Still no idea what possessed the builders/landlords to do that - especially in a 5-bedroom student house in a busy university city, which would probably have a lot of people in and out at unpredictable times. To make matters even worse - it was the main bathroom!! There was a room with a toilet and sink on the first floor, and a small shower room off the largest bedroom (with just a shower, for some reason), but that was the only proper bathroom.

Needless to say, we kept looking. ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on November 02, 2011, 10:21:00 AM
so we head over to the basement stairs, which aren't there.  Just a big opening in the floor. 

That reminds me of my friend's house when I was about 6 or 7.  They had no stairs to the basement and we were always cautioned not to open the basement door because we could fall in.  Somehow that translated to "we have a bottomless hole in our basement" in my young mind.  So what do you think we took great peasure in doing?  We would scare each other about the hole in the basement and open the door and look down into the dark abyss. 

This house was also unique because it had a greenhouse built into one side and a loft with the kids rooms up top which you had to take spiral stairs to get to.  The whole house was run on solar power too. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Reader on November 02, 2011, 01:18:07 PM
When my ex boyfriend and I were looking at houses we saw a house that had removed the front wall that separates a enclosed porch and the living room from each other.  The house he ended up buying had blue carpeting in rooms with lime green paint on the walls.  It was the first thing we changed after moving in.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: *new*mommyagain36 on November 02, 2011, 02:18:52 PM
I have seen 2 odd placements of a toilet.  My DH's Aunt lived in an older brick rowhouse.  When you opened the door to go to the basement there was a toilet right there on the first landing.  Since it was the door to the basement the door was almost always closed and you stood a very real risk of barging in on someone.  :-[  I suppose you could knock but I mean, it was the door to the basement, I could never remember to knock as if it were a traditionally placed bathroom.  Additionally if you were coming up from the basement there was no other door or barrier of any kind so you were a sitting duck, so to speak.  Many people were literally caught with their pants down many, many times.  :-[  I absolutely refused to use it though.
The second was a very old home that my DH and I were looking at that was in the process of being renovated.  There was a random lone toilet just sitting in a corner in the basement.  It was fully functional (I flushed it out of curiosity) but just sitting there in the great wide open.  No other bathroom fixtures, no walls to make it a powder room.  Again I guess if you were actually using the toilet you were really exposed to anyone coming down the stairs.  ???
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on November 02, 2011, 03:26:31 PM
When DH's grandparents built their completely disabled accessible home, they put in a caretaker's room. The room had its own toilet and bathtub. No walls surrounding said toilet and bathroom. We (the living family members) have been trying to sell that house for three years. Between that, the ancient plywood cabinets moved from the old house, the faux brick facade and the car collection their son (DH's dear uncle) stores in the basement and around the back of the house, there have been no takers. Wonder why?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: I'mnotinsane on November 02, 2011, 06:47:22 PM
One house DH and I looked at had a half bath that was a little funky.  The toilet was in sort of a closet with the sink in the room/hallway/storage area.  I'm still  ???
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on November 02, 2011, 06:51:11 PM
When we were buying our first home, we looked at over 50 houses in person. One was right around the corner from my ILs, but the listing looked decent, and the price was great, so we went to check it out. We walk in, and everything looks really nice - new floors, cabinets, appliances. The paint and wallpaper were not to our liking, but not a deal breaker, so we continue the walkthrough. Walk to the slider off the dining room, open it, and about fall 6 feet to the ground because they never got around to building the deck. And that's 6 feet because it's a daylight basement, so we head over to the basement stairs, which aren't there.  Just a big opening in the floor.  They sellers apparently ran out of money while trying to renovate.

This is sort of what happened here, to my house, except the renos were complete....the owner renovated himself into bankruptcy and the house was foreclosed on.  He'd spent all his cash on renovations and I guess had none left for the mortgage...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on November 02, 2011, 08:36:55 PM
One house DH and I looked at had a half bath that was a little funky.  The toilet was in sort of a closet with the sink in the room/hallway/storage area.  I'm still  ???

My FIL does some building -- in his current house, he wedged a powder room into the closet with the water heater.  Looks fine, but is pretty claustrophobic when you're sitting.  In the added-on bathroom in his previous house, you had to sit a little askew due to lack of leg room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on November 03, 2011, 12:07:28 PM
We had a half bath on the first floor of our old house, but it was as big as a regular bathroom. There was an empty corner that could have definitely held a tub; in fact, when I had guests over once, a little boy looked in it and said to his mom, "Don't they have a bathtub?"

It ws right next to a ridiculously small laundry room, the kind that is just a closet with bifold doors and you end up dumping laundry onto the kitcehn table. I always thought that if we had stayed there a little longer, we should have looked into having a wall knocked out and that space reconfigured.

There were some things I loved about that house, but the floor plan really did leave a lot to be desired.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lkb on November 04, 2011, 05:32:53 AM
When we were looking for our first home There was one that was really, really memorable:

FYI, the house was a 1960s era ranch (one floor, three bedrooms) was at a corner so most people would enter through the garage (no big deal, a lot of people do that) But in doing so, the first room visitors saw was a rather austere hallway and the master bathroom (more on that room later).

The doorway that most people would assume was the front door was rather plain and nondescript. The doorway into the backyard had the pillars, brickwork etc. that one usually associates with a front door.

The master bathroom tub was a good 18 inches short of the space for it and very, very low. The rest of the space was taken up by a potted plant.

The laundry chute led to the middle of the basement. (Any other houses I've seen that have them, it was over to the side.

End of that house.

Come to think of it there was another one with a really -- interesting -- bathroom:

It was a smaller bathroom and it had silver and black wallpaper. This wallpaper was the "optical illusion" of the stacked cubes that either looked like they were stacked up or stacked downward if you know what I mean. (Here's something similar but without the circles www.stumbleupon.com/url/www.revivalfabrics.com/detail.aspx%253FID%253D693 and of course in black and silver.

To accompany this charming decor was a shower curtain. The liner was bright orangy-red the outer part was clear and filled with an image of a spider and its web.

Nuff said.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on November 04, 2011, 09:06:47 AM

The laundry chute led to the middle of the basement. (Any other houses I've seen that have them, it was over to the side.


Mine leads to the middle of the basement.  It is in the bottom of the linen closet near the bath and bedrooms.  Whle not close to the washer and dryer, it is convenient for throwing dirty laundry.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on November 04, 2011, 10:50:34 AM

The laundry chute led to the middle of the basement. (Any other houses I've seen that have them, it was over to the side.


Mine leads to the middle of the basement.  It is in the bottom of the linen closet near the bath and bedrooms.  Whle not close to the washer and dryer, it is convenient for throwing dirty laundry.


Ours did too.  And it originated in the kitchen of the first floor.  Is that usual?  As kids we loved it.  Would would "parachute" our dolls and toys down. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on November 04, 2011, 01:52:51 PM

The laundry chute led to the middle of the basement. (Any other houses I've seen that have them, it was over to the side.


Mine leads to the middle of the basement.  It is in the bottom of the linen closet near the bath and bedrooms.  Whle not close to the washer and dryer, it is convenient for throwing dirty laundry.


Ours did too.  And it originated in the kitchen of the first floor.  Is that usual?  As kids we loved it.  Would would "parachute" our dolls and toys down.

We had a laundry chute once that originated in the kids' bathroom on the second floor, and then had a second door in the kitchen on the first floor. It ended up in the laundry room in the basement, right next to the original old stone sinks, where they must have done laundry by hand when the house was built. I think the kitchen door was for the tablecloths and napkins and dish towels and such.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: turtleIScream on November 04, 2011, 03:23:25 PM
Are laundry chutes in general considered unusual, or are we just commenting on odd placement? I've had a chute in every house I've ever lived in, and they always came out in the middle of the basement (some even had access from the kitchen too.)  Usually, they still managed to exit somewhat near the laundry hookups, except for our current house, which doesn't matter because we relocated the washer and dryer to the main floor.  Someday, someone will buy our house and comment in this thread about the ranch house with main floor laundry and a laundry chute.

Off-topic: Anyone else have cats that love to snuggle in the pile of dirties accumulating at the chute's terminus?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: snowfire on November 04, 2011, 10:42:02 PM
I have not seen many new houses with laundry chutes.  Around here it seems to be the older ones.  The house I grew up in was built around 1930 & the laundry chute was in the bottom of the linen closet that was in the hallway between the main floor bedrooms & bathroom. 

We had two cats who both liked to sleep on the piles of laundry in the chute.  They didn't teach each other about it as we didn't get Jubilee until Red had been gone for several years.  Both of them did get the occasional rude surprise when either they were asleep and someone opened the door at the bottom and cat and laundry made a quick trip to the floor, or when they hopped down into a pile of laundry, (usually sheets would do this), that was stuck in the chute but with an open trap door.

The weight of a cat was always enough to unstick the laundry, and again, quick trip to the basement. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hermanne on November 05, 2011, 01:24:07 PM
Quote
The weight of a cat was always enough to unstick the laundry...

Okay, now I have this picture in my head of someone dropping a cat down the chute just to get that last sock out. :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: snowfire on November 05, 2011, 06:59:11 PM
Snerk!

Actually, the chute was about 16 inches square with a wooden trap door at the bottom held up by a big hook & eye.

A wad of sheets would pretty well fill it up and two sets was almost a guaranteed stuffing.  It was also a very cozy cat napping spot.  Several times I almost had kitty land on my head when I opened the trap.

No cats were ever hurt, they always landed in a big pile of laundry.  However, it is really hard to do the typical cat "I meant to do that" look when you are dropping like a furry rock.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blewellyn on November 07, 2011, 06:05:57 PM
Not my househunting - but my gran lived in a house with a "secret" room. It was really bizarre. On the first floor, there was a room at the back of the house, that you could only get to through a small door (around 3 feet high) in the corner of the spare bedroom. It was a decent sized room, but it didn't have any normal sized doors.



Is it possible that your Gran's house was part of the underground railroad?  We have a number of houses built in the 19th century in these parts with secret rooms, underground tunnels, false bottoms in window seats, etc.

B

Very, very unlikely. It was built in the 1970s, in a small village in the English countryside.

Well then I guess that definitely rules one possible explanation out.   heh...  that IS really bizaare.

B
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JenJay on November 08, 2011, 07:11:18 PM
I don't know if this is really considered a feature, but DH and I are currently renting a house and when we walked through we noticed that there was a cable outlet in every bedroom, the living room, family room and dinning room. We laughed about how the previous renters must have really liked tv. After we moved in and started unpacking things we found that there are also outlets, complete with a few feet of cable, in a small upstairs closet, the master walk-in closet and behind the refrigerator! They really, REALLY liked to watch tv!  ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on November 08, 2011, 07:13:33 PM
I don't know if this is really considered a feature, but DH and I are currently renting a house and when we walked through we noticed that there was a cable outlet in every bedroom, the living room, family room and dinning room. We laughed about how the previous renters must have really liked tv. After we moved in and started unpacking things we found that there are also outlets, complete with a few feet of cable, in a small upstairs closet, the master walk-in closet and behind the refrigerator! They really, REALLY liked to watch tv!  ;D

It might be that it's not very hard to keep adding them while you're at it, so the builder figured that as long as they were doing it, they might as well put one everywhere you could possibly want one. That's how my parents ended up with a phone jack in every single room in their house, including the bathrooms.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JenJay on November 08, 2011, 07:22:41 PM
I don't know if this is really considered a feature, but DH and I are currently renting a house and when we walked through we noticed that there was a cable outlet in every bedroom, the living room, family room and dinning room. We laughed about how the previous renters must have really liked tv. After we moved in and started unpacking things we found that there are also outlets, complete with a few feet of cable, in a small upstairs closet, the master walk-in closet and behind the refrigerator! They really, REALLY liked to watch tv!  ;D

It might be that it's not very hard to keep adding them while you're at it, so the builder figured that as long as they were doing it, they might as well put one everywhere you could possibly want one. That's how my parents ended up with a phone jack in every single room in their house, including the bathrooms.

I could see that if it was just an outlet in the wall, but these have cable sticking out of them, several feet worth. The house is about 25 years old so I don't think the same cable would be in use? Where the outlets are down by the floor and there's carpet I was able to tuck it along the baseboards, but in the closets and behind the fridge I just coiled it up and tucked it out of the way. It cracks me up!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on November 08, 2011, 07:38:49 PM
We rented out a house with cable in the living room, the downstairs breakfast nook off the kitchen, and the upstairs master bedroom (3 locations, if I recall correctly).  The renter asked permission to add cable access to the other two bedrooms upstairs and the office (cable modem for computer access, from the phrasing of the request).  When they moved out - there was NEW cable in a second location in the living room, the master bedroom, the other two bedrooms, the dining room, and possibly the kitchen...........

I started repainting but ran out of time & had to hire it done - because there were a series of repairs that needed to be done that had me taking off to pick out new flooring (water damage from a leak and heat damage from a kitchen accident), arrange take down of the power lines to fell two lightning struck trees (not the renter's fault), kitchen cabinet repairs (no explanation ever gotten from the renter - but they never contacted me to ask where their damage deposit was), and the repainting of the whole house & cleaning of the carpet (two cats and pale cream colored carpet).  Landscaping was needed due to a drought - but we left that undone as we were trying to sell the house............instead it got rented again - then sold a bit over a year later........I never did get to see how it looked after the repairs were finished as I had gone back to work after using up my vacation trying to get the repairs done.............but VorGuy seemed to think that it looked good and so did the second tenant............I understand that the buyers were gutting it to redecorate in a 2003 style instead of the mid-1990s vibe it had when we bought it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dindrane on November 08, 2011, 10:56:27 PM
I could definitely see someone going a little crazy with outlets in a new house -- before the drywall is up, you may as well do all the wiring you think you'll ever need and then do a little more. :)  But if it was done later, that is a little odd.

However, I do have to point out that my parents have internet/phone jacks near the top of their pantry on the first floor and near the top of the linen closet on the second floor.  That's where the routers for their wireless network live, but I would imagine it could seem very odd to someone else.

(They also have a super fun "command center" in the closet under the stairs, behind the clothes rod with all the coats.  There's a small shelf with the modem and a bunch of plugs all laid out so that you can connect or disconnect any jack in the house to the phone/internet.  It does depend upon the roughly 5" ethernet cables my brother made for my parents, however, as standard sized ones would be ridiculous.)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JenJay on November 09, 2011, 07:09:48 AM
I could definitely see someone going a little crazy with outlets in a new house -- before the drywall is up, you may as well do all the wiring you think you'll ever need and then do a little more. :)  But if it was done later, that is a little odd.

However, I do have to point out that my parents have internet/phone jacks near the top of their pantry on the first floor and near the top of the linen closet on the second floor.  That's where the routers for their wireless network live, but I would imagine it could seem very odd to someone else.

(They also have a super fun "command center" in the closet under the stairs, behind the clothes rod with all the coats.  There's a small shelf with the modem and a bunch of plugs all laid out so that you can connect or disconnect any jack in the house to the phone/internet.  It does depend upon the roughly 5" ethernet cables my brother made for my parents, however, as standard sized ones would be ridiculous.)

That sounds so cool!!! I had an employer who had a similar setup in a cupboard in her dinning room (one "wall" was actually a waist high set of cupboards that separated the formal dinning room from the living room). It had hard wired outlets for just about everything including wiring for running surround sound from the stereo (housed in the cupboard) to every room downstairs AND outside. My husband went crazy for that. Features like that, I think, are definitely a bonus to the house!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dindrane on November 09, 2011, 08:32:29 AM
In this day of wireless high-speed internet being so easily accessible to most people, I would agree that having spots hard-wired for internet connectivity in out-of-the-way spots is definitely a good thing.  What I imagine can be weird about it all, though, is that what seems like a fantastic spot to one person might be the weirdest most frustrating thing to another. :)

And speaking of hard-wired connectivity, I remembered one somewhat odd feature in my own apartment.  My apartment itself is actually a little bizarre.  The weirdest feature is that all the light switches are a good 6 inches lower than you'd typically expect them -- they're about level with your average doorknob.  Since I'm on the first floor, it could be to make the apartment accessible...except for the fact that the bathroom and bedroom doorways are quite a bit narrower than standard doors, and certainly not wide enough for a wheelchair.

But the connectivity thing that is really weird is the cable jack in the living room.  The living room itself is just a big square that looks kind of like this:

----------------------------                  |
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
                                                      |
                                                      |
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
|                                                     
|                                                     
-------------------------------------------

The narrow gap on the left is an opening that leads to a teensy hallway thing where the bedroom and bathroom doors are.  The large gap at the top is an opening that leads to the kitchen.  The gap on the bottom right is the front door to the apartment.  So the walls themselves are basically two "L"s -- the short side of the shorter one is only about 3 feet across.  There are also two distinct pathways that can't really have much in the way of furniture -- from the front door to the kitchen and from the kitchen to the bedroom/bathroom.

Whoever built this apartment decided that the best place for a cable jack would be right in the corner of the small L.  So it's on a wall that is 3 feet away from a natural and necessary pathway to the bedroom/bathroom.  If I were to put a tv in that spot, I'd have the tv on one wall, and the only place to put the couch would be on the other side of the room (15 feet away).  If I tried to put the tv anywhere else in the apartment at all, I'd have a cable cord across a walkway.

Fortunately, I don't pay for cable so I don't need the jack, but it's still an odd placement.  I suppose I might be the weird one for putting a desk and a bunch of bookshelves in the living room along with my couch and television, but the room is 15 feet square -- it's really quite large.  Plus, I have a 20 inch non-flat-screen tv that I would not be able to see very well if it were across the room, and this apartment complex was built in the early 90s.  Cable television certainly existed then, but affordable large televisions (or any sort of flat-screen) certainly did not.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on November 09, 2011, 08:38:56 AM
In this day of wireless high-speed internet being so easily accessible to most people, I would agree that having spots hard-wired for internet connectivity in out-of-the-way spots is definitely a good thing.  What I imagine can be weird about it all, though, is that what seems like a fantastic spot to one person might be the weirdest most frustrating thing to another. :)

And speaking of hard-wired connectivity, I remembered one somewhat odd feature in my own apartment.  My apartment itself is actually a little bizarre.  The weirdest feature is that all the light switches are a good 6 inches lower than you'd typically expect them -- they're about level with your average doorknob.  Since I'm on the first floor, it could be to make the apartment accessible...except for the fact that the bathroom and bedroom doorways are quite a bit narrower than standard doors, and certainly not wide enough for a wheelchair.

But the connectivity thing that is really weird is the cable jack in the living room.  The living room itself is just a big square that looks kind of like this:

----------------------------                  |
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
                                                      |
                                                      |
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
|                                                     |
|                                                     
|                                                     
-------------------------------------------

The narrow gap on the left is an opening that leads to a teensy hallway thing where the bedroom and bathroom doors are.  The large gap at the top is an opening that leads to the kitchen.  The gap on the bottom right is the front door to the apartment.  So the walls themselves are basically two "L"s -- the short side of the shorter one is only about 3 feet across.  There are also two distinct pathways that can't really have much in the way of furniture -- from the front door to the kitchen and from the kitchen to the bedroom/bathroom.

Whoever built this apartment decided that the best place for a cable jack would be right in the corner of the small L.  So it's on a wall that is 3 feet away from a natural and necessary pathway to the bedroom/bathroom.  If I were to put a tv in that spot, I'd have the tv on one wall, and the only place to put the couch would be on the other side of the room (15 feet away).  If I tried to put the tv anywhere else in the apartment at all, I'd have a cable cord across a walkway.

Fortunately, I don't pay for cable so I don't need the jack, but it's still an odd placement.  I suppose I might be the weird one for putting a desk and a bunch of bookshelves in the living room along with my couch and television, but the room is 15 feet square -- it's really quite large.  Plus, I have a 20 inch non-flat-screen tv that I would not be able to see very well if it were across the room, and this apartment complex was built in the early 90s.  Cable television certainly existed then, but affordable large televisions (or any sort of flat-screen) certainly did not.

I always figure weird placements like that are the fault of the installer finding the easiest place to do the install, and somehow convincing the homeowners it's a good thing. In the days before cordless phones, I had an apartment with phone jacks placed like your cable jack--tucked way into the corners of the living room and bedroom, on short walls where you couldn't put a bed or a table or a chair. Until I found longer phone cords, I had to stand or sit on the floor every time I was on the phone.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dindrane on November 09, 2011, 09:09:33 AM
I always figure weird placements like that are the fault of the installer finding the easiest place to do the install, and somehow convincing the homeowners it's a good thing. In the days before cordless phones, I had an apartment with phone jacks placed like your cable jack--tucked way into the corners of the living room and bedroom, on short walls where you couldn't put a bed or a table or a chair. Until I found longer phone cords, I had to stand or sit on the floor every time I was on the phone.

I agree. :)  Sometimes weird placements can be directly related to the age of the building, too.  I have a phone jack in the kitchen with no outlets anywhere nearby -- the two closest are on the other side of the refrigerator and across the walkway.  So not only is a cordless phone in the kitchen pretty much out of the question, we also have a really odd set-up to make our DSL work.  Either the power cord or the phone cord has to snake around a wall.  But, since this apartment was built before high-speed internet even existed, and I think even before cordless phones were common, it's understandable that nobody would have thought an outlet near the phone jack was necessary.  It does mean that I have to talk on the phone in the kitchen while blocking the doorway, though, since the phone is attached to the wall.

I also tend to have an issue with outlets in general.  Any apartment is going to have outlets in not-the-most-convenient places because they tend to just be scattered evenly throughout the rooms rather than placed in any sort of specific plan.  But because this apartment is older, I don't have anywhere near enough outlets.  People didn't used to have three computers, two cell phones, and a couple of iPods in addition to general household things (tv, fans, lamps, etc.) all in one 2-person household. :P
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on November 09, 2011, 09:18:04 AM
We built a home in 1998 and the phone line installer was told to pre-wire for TWO lines and use the insulated wiring so that that there wouldn't be "cross-talk" when both lines were in use (DSL modem or two different phone conversations).  He didn't think that would be a problem...........and so we ended up getting a cable modem and cutting back to ONE phone line a bit later...............we also had outlets for phone & cable in the sewing/laundry room, two places in the master bedroom (office "alcove" extension off the square bedroom), but no phone line in the living room (ran line through a "window" into the kitchen), and TWO hot water heaters (still miss that feature).  No hot water had to run from one end of the house to the other because the two bedrooms at one end of the house had their own, smaller hot water heater for that bathroom.  The larger one over the master bedroom also heated the water for laundry and kitchen. 

There were several places where our needs were not communicated clearly between VorGuy and the builder/various trades.............but dual hot water heaters cut down a lot of fussing in the morning!  The kids and the grownups didn't use the same water heater.............

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on November 09, 2011, 09:38:07 AM
But because this apartment is older, I don't have anywhere near enough outlets.  People didn't used to have three computers, two cell phones, and a couple of iPods in addition to general household things (tv, fans, lamps, etc.) all in one 2-person household. :P

Yup.  My 1950's house has one outlet per wall.  Maybe.  Almost all of them are connected to at least one extention cord of one sort or another.  Whenever I have done any new construction, whether remodeling the kitchen, rebuilding the basement walls, or adding the master suite, I insist on lots of outlets.  The walk-in closet has two sets of four for recharging stuff.  The electrician gave me a funny look, but I explained about a friend's master bathroom outlet with a 6 outlet extender, all with something plugged in.   There is no such thing as too many outlets. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Black Delphinium on November 09, 2011, 09:46:19 AM
There is no such thing as too many outlets.
Well, as long as you have the circuit breakers to handle them. :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on November 09, 2011, 09:56:19 AM
But because this apartment is older, I don't have anywhere near enough outlets.  People didn't used to have three computers, two cell phones, and a couple of iPods in addition to general household things (tv, fans, lamps, etc.) all in one 2-person household. :P

Yup.  My 1950's house has one outlet per wall.  Maybe.  Almost all of them are connected to at least one extention cord of one sort or another.  Whenever I have done any new construction, whether remodeling the kitchen, rebuilding the basement walls, or adding the master suite, I insist on lots of outlets.  The walk-in closet has two sets of four for recharging stuff.  The electrician gave me a funny look, but I explained about a friend's master bathroom outlet with a 6 outlet extender, all with something plugged in.   There is no such thing as too many outlets.

Age of the house has a lot to do with it. I rented one house built in 1920. Two outlets per room. Ceiling lights with pull cords, not wall switches.

My current place is 110 years old--originally it had gas lighting. Fortunately, a previous owner had the entire place rewired, and most rooms have at least one outlet per wall. They didn't run the wires through the walls (old plaster walls), so there's a lot of those wire duct covers running along baseboards and even a few ceilings, but that's nothing to the joy of having enough outlets.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Dindrane on November 09, 2011, 09:58:29 AM
There is no such thing as too many outlets.
Well, as long as you have the circuit breakers to handle them. :)

Yes. :)  I discovered in an unpleasant way recently that my coffee maker, electric kettle, and toaster are more than the breaker they're all on can handle.  It is no fun to have half your kitchen outlets suddenly stop working when you haven't even had your coffee, much less your breakfast!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xallanthia on November 09, 2011, 10:43:40 AM
There is no such thing as too many outlets.
Well, as long as you have the circuit breakers to handle them. :)

Yes. :)  I discovered in an unpleasant way recently that my coffee maker, electric kettle, and toaster are more than the breaker they're all on can handle.  It is no fun to have half your kitchen outlets suddenly stop working when you haven't even had your coffee, much less your breakfast!

When I blew the fuse running a dehumidifier and a massive floor-drying fan (my apartment flooded during a hurricane, I was drying out), I discovered that the entire house is wired to one circuit... except the kitchen.  This is excellent for the kitchen but with two computers on the main apartment circuit the lights flicker when we use the printer  :-\
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sterling on November 09, 2011, 11:02:24 AM
My fiance and I are remodeling our house which was built in 1902.  The bathroom use be a small bedroom.  There is no good light in there for putting on makeup and no outlets at all.  So when we redid the walls (plaster to dry wall) we added 2 outlets per wall.  And it is on its on circuit so we can actually use a hairdryer and a curling iron at the same time.  I can do my hair at the sink or let Leo use the sink and I can do my hair on the other side of the room.

It looks like overkill but finally I can use my bathroom to get ready instead of the dining room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on November 09, 2011, 02:55:50 PM
One of the advantages of living in your childhood home is that you know why certain pecular things once made sense.  For example, the built-in ironing board in the dining room.  First, of course, you have to figure out what that funny-shaped padded board is.   ;)  Once you figure out that it is indeed an ironing board, and that the little closet also holds a little shelf for the iron and spray starch, and even an outlet for the iron, you wonder, "But why is it set so low that you have to bend over it?"
And why the dining room?  Did they iron that many tablecloths? 

Nope, I think my mother had only one tablecloth, and I'm not sure if it was used even at holiday dinners, much less every day.  The reason that the ironing board is in the dining room, is that if you sat on one side, you could see the TV in the living room.  In the days before permanent press and dryers, a wife could spend at least a couple of hours ironing.  So, my parents designed the ironing board so that my mother could comfortably sit and watch TV while she ironed.  The dining table held freshly pressed clothing until they were taken to the bedrooms.

I have since rearranged the living room and moved the antenna outlet, leaving the TV no longer visible from the dining room.  That's okay because I avoid ironing like the proverbial plague, but it leaves no clue as to the original arrangement.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ruelz on November 09, 2011, 03:04:37 PM
Makes perfect sense to me!  ;D

Speaking of outlets, our house, build in 1976 - has lots (which is lovely) - but they're all installed upside down (the third prong is opposite to what it should be).  Not a big deal, but you have to turn anything you plug in upside down, and with some heavier electrical cords, they just don't want to turn that way...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on November 09, 2011, 03:09:27 PM
Makes perfect sense to me!  ;D

Speaking of outlets, our house, build in 1976 - has lots (which is lovely) - but they're all installed upside down (the third prong is opposite to what it should be).  Not a big deal, but you have to turn anything you plug in upside down, and with some heavier electrical cords, they just don't want to turn that way...

 ;D Basement outlets.  And the wires aren't quite long enough to turn them upright when I replace them. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on November 09, 2011, 05:51:16 PM
When we bought a new kitchen, we totally rearranged everything except the sink and dishwasher. We ended up with an outlet where the new pantry closet went and the guys putting the cabinets in just couldn't let us disconnect it and have the pantry cover it. So, I have a live outlet in my pantry which I will never use.

I wonder what any new buyers may think of that in 20 years. I don't know what to think of it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JenJay on November 09, 2011, 06:56:03 PM
When we bought a new kitchen, we totally rearranged everything except the sink and dishwasher. We ended up with an outlet where the new pantry closet went and the guys putting the cabinets in just couldn't let us disconnect it and have the pantry cover it. So, I have a live outlet in my pantry which I will never use.

I wonder what any new buyers may think of that in 20 years. I don't know what to think of it.

I could see that being handy for rechargeable batteries and such.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: HorseFreak on November 09, 2011, 07:22:27 PM
My apartment in a small town in NH was a delightful example of old home + wannabe handyman = disaster. The place was built in the mid-to-late 1800's (it's present in a photo from 1890) as a storefront downstairs and two story living quarters upstairs. I'm sure it was beautiful when built, but some time later an owner decided to convert the upstairs into two apartments by placing a wall down the middle and extending the building back with a 20' deep addition. The middle staircase was divided with the wall and it's hard to explain the floor plan, but it's obvious what was original when you're standing in there.

Mr. Weekend Warrior Handyman installed a new circuit breaker, but opted not to remove the metal piece covering the switch for the new bedroom. When my roommate ran her hair dryer and portable heater at once the breaker tried to trip, but was obstructed, nearly causing a major electrical fire. We noticed the smoke and turned everything off. The fire department was not amused with our landlord (likely the handyman from like behavior when this was discovered) and made him install some additional detectors and signals that would alert us to a fire in the deli downstairs. At least the rent was cheap!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on November 10, 2011, 12:16:49 AM
When we bought a new kitchen, we totally rearranged everything except the sink and dishwasher. We ended up with an outlet where the new pantry closet went and the guys putting the cabinets in just couldn't let us disconnect it and have the pantry cover it. So, I have a live outlet in my pantry which I will never use.

I wonder what any new buyers may think of that in 20 years. I don't know what to think of it.

I could see that being handy for rechargeable batteries and such.

Yup, if we didn't need the space for food storage. Maybe in a one person household it would be helpful.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: WestAussieGirl on November 10, 2011, 03:09:05 AM
I recently looked at a house with an old phone box (booth) in the backyard.  One of those old ones which were made of clear glass and red wood.  When I saw the photo on the internet I thought it would be a fun thing for the kids to have (I still remember having one at my kindergarten when I was a kid).  When I went to look at the house though I discovered that the phone box housed a working toilet.  In the middle of the backyard.  With clear glass walls.  With not a single thing to obscure the user.

Really, really odd.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: catgal on November 10, 2011, 07:37:16 AM
WestAussieGirl, there is a house in South Australia, around the corner from my parents house that had the exact same set up.  When the old red phone boxes were being sold off, must have been 30 years ago, several people that mum and dad knew bought phone boxes.  There was the one that replaced an old existing outdoor loo, another had some of the glass removed and became part of an aviary, and I can't remember what happened to the others. There were articles in the paper about the many uses of old phone boxes - it was a bit of a fad.  ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JenJay on November 10, 2011, 08:08:20 AM
When we bought a new kitchen, we totally rearranged everything except the sink and dishwasher. We ended up with an outlet where the new pantry closet went and the guys putting the cabinets in just couldn't let us disconnect it and have the pantry cover it. So, I have a live outlet in my pantry which I will never use.

I wonder what any new buyers may think of that in 20 years. I don't know what to think of it.

I could see that being handy for rechargeable batteries and such.

Yup, if we didn't need the space for food storage. Maybe in a one person household it would be helpful.

I was picturing a standard outlet that you'd use to plug in one or two things but could be closed off with baby-proofing plugs if you didn't need it. I didn't realize it was taking up so much space. That would be a pain!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on November 10, 2011, 09:29:43 AM
When we bought a new kitchen, we totally rearranged everything except the sink and dishwasher. We ended up with an outlet where the new pantry closet went and the guys putting the cabinets in just couldn't let us disconnect it and have the pantry cover it. So, I have a live outlet in my pantry which I will never use.

I wonder what any new buyers may think of that in 20 years. I don't know what to think of it.

I could see that being handy for rechargeable batteries and such.

Yup, if we didn't need the space for food storage. Maybe in a one person household it would be helpful.

I was picturing a standard outlet that you'd use to plug in one or two things but could be closed off with baby-proofing plugs if you didn't need it. I didn't realize it was taking up so much space. That would be a pain!

No. It is just a regular outlet so just useless to me as I need all of that shelf for food, not recharging the DustBuster or phones. It's not in way, just looks silly when I clean the pantry.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: White Dragon on November 11, 2011, 09:12:49 PM
My parents live in a circa 1920's house.

At one end of the kitchen there is a shallow (as in 3" deep) cupboard. It used to house a built in ironing board, but the ironing board was long gone by the time we moved in.

Mom used to store her broom and dustpan since it was the perfect size.
A few years ago, they finally renovated the kitchen. The 'broom closet was retained, but now it holds...an ironing board.
Still confuses me when I go visit.  :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JadeGirl on November 12, 2011, 06:12:47 AM
When we bought a new kitchen, we totally rearranged everything except the sink and dishwasher. We ended up with an outlet where the new pantry closet went and the guys putting the cabinets in just couldn't let us disconnect it and have the pantry cover it. So, I have a live outlet in my pantry which I will never use.

I wonder what any new buyers may think of that in 20 years. I don't know what to think of it.

I could see that being handy for rechargeable batteries and such.

Yup, if we didn't need the space for food storage. Maybe in a one person household it would be helpful.

I have one of those - it's turned out to be really handy.  I made a hole in the side of the pantry closet so I could run power cables from appliances in the hutch next to it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on November 12, 2011, 10:47:11 AM
My parents live in a circa 1920's house.

At one end of the kitchen there is a shallow (as in 3" deep) cupboard. It used to house a built in ironing board, but the ironing board was long gone by the time we moved in.

Mom used to store her broom and dustpan since it was the perfect size.
A few years ago, they finally renovated the kitchen. The 'broom closet was retained, but now it holds...an ironing board.
Still confuses me when I go visit.  :D

Myst be characteristic of houses for that time.  My own home was built in 1922 and I have a very shallow cupboard like what you describe in my kitchen.  I use it to house my broom , dustpan, and a couple other things I don't have another place for, but it's not much use to store cleaning supplies other than the broom and stuff, because bottles of cleaner and such are usually too wide and the cupboard doors won't close.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: General Jinjur on November 12, 2011, 07:32:27 PM
The house we are in now has one of those, except, sadly, there is an actual ironing board in it, which is useless to us. Much better to have one lined with shallow shelves for spices and things.

Oh, and I don't know when the house was built, exactly, but I'm guessing 1915ish.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on November 17, 2011, 10:53:54 PM
From a slideshow of houses in the NY Times:

House 1: a faux hieroglyphics painted sink (http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/11/14/greathomesanddestinations/201111120wygss.html?ref=realestate#7) + a mini pyramid off to the side

House 2: Winnie The Pooh quote over the kitchen (http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/11/14/greathomesanddestinations/201111120wygss.html?ref=realestate#22)



Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Stormtreader on November 18, 2011, 05:09:49 AM
Ok, both of those are awesome :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on November 21, 2011, 08:19:27 AM
We have been in our townhouse for 3 months. Two weeks ago, DH ran a dishwasher cleaner through our dishwasher. The object is for the dishwasher to get hot enough to melt the wax plug, which pulls all grit and sediment out of the dishwasher. After the cycle had finished, he opened the dishwasher to find a perfectly intact cleaner as it had not got hot enough to melt the wax. He did some investigating and found that there is only a cold water outlet where the dishwasher is located and it does not make its own hot water. So, for 12 years, this dishwasher has been run on cold water. No wonder it did such an awful job.

It has now been fixed, which involved cutting the water line, and making a mess. I am certainly glad the Thanksgiving dishes can be washed now and not rewashed by hand.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: guihong on December 10, 2011, 10:25:09 AM
My brother's first house after he married had the master bedroom and their daughter's room next to each other, with a closet directly opposite in the hall.  The closet had a large mirrored door, so if the MB door was left open while someone was changing, this would reflect into the daughter's room  :-X.  My SIL had him take out the door for a wood one.

I once saw a house that was a converted 1800's schoolhouse.  The living room was the original classroom, with the old stove in the middle.  The owner had lovingly preserved the original walls and even part of the chalkboard became the family's message center.  There were add-ons but all of them had used the same old-fashioned wooden wall look so the styles wouldn't clash.  It wasn't laughingly funny like some of the houses in the thread, but definitely unusual! 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Thipu1 on December 13, 2011, 09:09:35 AM
This isn't a house hunting story.  It's a story about the house where I grew up. When I was a teenager, my folks they decided that they wanted to turn the two family house into a one family house.  The renovations resulted in some interesting discoveries. 

The house dated from about 1840.  At that time, the area was noted for brick-making.  Renovating the house was frustrating because the floor plan couldn't be changed.  Althouh the house seemed to be clapboard, every single wall was load-bearing.  Each one was lined with brick.  We couldn't change the layout at all.

Even Dad's idea about enlarging the flower beds was thwarted because, a few inches  under the surface of the ground, we found the yard was also lined with brick. 

In the back yard were two magnificent lilac bushes that had once shielded an outhouse.  It was long gone but we always laughed that the original structure was also probably brick. After all,everything else in town was. 

We also learned that our parlor had most likely been a shop or tavern at some point.  There was the mysterious signature of 'Eugene Zundel' scratched into a family room window and yes, there was a small graveyard hidden in the raspberry canes behind the garage. 

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: BabylonSister on December 20, 2011, 04:58:32 PM

First my mom's: In late 2008, she moved from a Parisian suburb to the South of France, near the French-Spanish border. She had spent the previous 45 years in recent, spacious, subsidized-housing apartments. She moved into a one-bedroom apartment that had exactly one window. The whole apartment was one long rectangle, with her bedroom opposite from the window. A windowless bedroom ... It's apparently a common feature over there. She didn't stay in that one very long. Her current apartment is much nicer but it has a Dr Seuss touch: none of the walls are at a right angle. They're close, but not quite there, so the furniture always looks like it needs to be pushed back in place.


The house I live in is over 100 years old and it has been updated but this is a low-income neighborhood so I'm guessing previous owners did not hire professionals.


-The doors don't match. They're of different heights. They have the doorknobs in different places. One of them has it at a child's height. One door was too high for the frame? Not a problem. They sawed the top off. So, what if they didn't saw it off straight?  ::)


-Carpeting in the kitchen? Check. That was the first thing I took care of when we moved in. I am not cooking and eating on carpet.


-Wood paneling everywhere? Check.


-My room has no central heating and no insulation. It was evidently added later. I *love* my space heater.


-The kitchen cupboards must have been installed for giants. The lowest shelf is at 5'3". I'm 5'4". I love* my stepladder.


-There is no closet. None. Anywhere. I guess according to federal regulations, it's a 0 bedroom house. The house did come with nasty, cheap armoires but I certainly miss having a linen closet, or a place to store ... you know ... STUFF.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hermanne on December 20, 2011, 05:16:53 PM
Re.: no closets in older homes.

Apparently this was normal for these houses to only have one largish closet for everyone in the house and to use freestanding wardrobes in the bedrooms, if you could afford them.

My parents' old house (the one with the "floor of Dante's inferno" red carpet) had that setup on the second floor with the bedrooms. The closet had a window, and was my sister's room. It was a big closet, but a tiny bedroom. (And that meant Sis didn't have to share! :D) Our parents built closets in the other bedrooms during their many years of renovations. And yes, the former closet got a closet.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Slartibartfast on December 21, 2011, 01:42:04 AM
Some friends of my parents built an honest-to-goodness log cabin as a summer cottage (a fairly common thing in the north woods).  It's actually a pretty nice house - I wouldn't want to have to heat it in winter, but it's cozy and comfortable.  The odd thing: in the master bathroom, they put in mosaic floor tile.  In the colors and shape of a sports team which is a main rival to the local favorites.  A team based out of a city quite a ways away, so the chances of someone wanting to buy the house in State A and just happening to be huge fans of this particular sport and loving State B's team enough to tile their bathroom with those colors are pretty small!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: iridaceae on December 21, 2011, 01:47:52 AM
Some friends of my parents built an honest-to-goodness log cabin as a summer cottage (a fairly common thing in the north woods).  It's actually a pretty nice house - I wouldn't want to have to heat it in winter, but it's cozy and comfortable.  The odd thing: in the master bathroom, they put in mosaic floor tile.  In the colors and shape of a sports team which is a main rival to the local favorites.  A team based out of a city quite a ways away, so the chances of someone wanting to buy the house in State A and just happening to be huge fans of this particular sport and loving State B's team enough to tile their bathroom with those colors are pretty small!

MInnesota Vikings or Chicago Bears?  If it's the Bears and you're in Wisconsin the North Woods are, of course, big summer vacation areas for Chicagoites. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Slartibartfast on December 21, 2011, 01:57:48 AM
Some friends of my parents built an honest-to-goodness log cabin as a summer cottage (a fairly common thing in the north woods).  It's actually a pretty nice house - I wouldn't want to have to heat it in winter, but it's cozy and comfortable.  The odd thing: in the master bathroom, they put in mosaic floor tile.  In the colors and shape of a sports team which is a main rival to the local favorites.  A team based out of a city quite a ways away, so the chances of someone wanting to buy the house in State A and just happening to be huge fans of this particular sport and loving State B's team enough to tile their bathroom with those colors are pretty small!

MInnesota Vikings or Chicago Bears?  If it's the Bears and you're in Wisconsin the North Woods are, of course, big summer vacation areas for Chicagoites. 

Michigan State, actually  :P

Okay, haven't finished reading the thread yet, but the talk about secret passages reminds me our current house DOES have a secret room!  We didn't find it while house hunting, but discovered it about a year later.  The second floor is basically a hallway with a bedroom on each end, and there are walk-in attics under the sloped roof at the front and the back of the house.  However, if you go in the back attic and duck behind the linen closet and follow a 4' high triangular-shaped tunnel, you find a huge unfinished space over the garage!

(http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y247/wendymarlowe/newroom-beforepictures001.jpg)

We had it finished this spring - it adds almost 300 square feet to the house!  We turned the previous "second bedroom" upstairs into a study and are making this new room the baby's room.  Turns out the previous bedroom isn't up to code for a bedroom anyway (window's too small and there's no way to enlarge it), and now you have to walk through it to get to the new room, but we did the same carpet and paint in both rooms and now we could probably pass it off as a "mother-in-law apartment" or a bedroom suite or something.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Reader on December 21, 2011, 08:51:53 AM
The house I live in is over 100 years old and it has been updated but this is a low-income neighborhood so I'm guessing previous owners did not hire professionals.


-The doors don't match. They're of different heights. My floor is sagging in the middle. Not a problem. They sawed the bottoms off. So, what if they didn't saw it off straight?  ::)


-Carpeting in the kitchen? Check. Luckily I have a dog that I have taught to pick up food on the floor by just saying vacuum so that keeps the messes down to a minimum.  Haven't replaced it because the linoleum is even uglier underneath and pulling up the carpet (which are carpet squares) would leave huge circles of glue on the linoleum.

-Wood paneling everywhere? Check.


Added the changes for it to be my house.  When I first read your post man I was like she's talking about my house.  The lady who owned it before had a love of wallpaper as well.  Over 3 different kinds used to hide flaws in the wall.  Still trying to understand why she used a border in the den and living room near the top by the ceiling when she didn't put wallpaper up in there besides the border.  She even had the downstairs bathroom wallpapered before they put in the sink, so the caulk for top edge is actually over the paper.  And that bathroom has a blue theme carried from the kitchen (since it's right next to it) and even sports a blue toilet.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: BabylonSister on December 21, 2011, 09:05:40 AM
Under my carpet there was plywood --well, and an inch thick layer of very old glue. I had to use adhesive remover, which has very toxic fumes so I had to buy a gas mask. Fun times.


Who glues carpet on top of linoleum?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Reader on December 21, 2011, 11:14:41 AM
People who either don't really know what they are doing or people who don't care that they should have pulled up the linoleum first.  Because of the way they did other things is the reason I've been putting off redoing the floor.   I'm kinda afraid of what I might find under that linoleum because since they glued the carpet to it, it might stand to reason I might have multiple layers of linoleum to deal with.

Don't get me started on the drop ceilings in half the house (why would you crop wonderful I think 10 feet high ceilings to something just around 8) and I also have tiling in 2 of my three bedrooms and upstairs hallways.  The kind of tiling that looks like it should have come from a 70's office and looked very similar to tiling we had at my old work building before we moved locations.  That building was so old that when it was selling the historical society tried to step in and make it a historical landmark.  I'm all for preserving historical buildings, but this building really needs to be demolished, it is a pit (one connected building still had fire damage and was closed off), and because the cost to update the whole usable 3 floors into modern spaces was so high that it prevented 3 separate buyers from purchasing prior, until the city bought it for a renovation project for a farmer's/open market space.   It's been 3 years since then and it still sits there empty and unused.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: BabylonSister on December 21, 2011, 12:35:20 PM
Reader, our houses do sound similar! Here's me in my kitchen hamming it up with my gas mask at the time of the carpet removal. Look at the ceiling! Oy! You can also see one of the impossibly high cabinets. Oh and that door in the back? It's for a bedroom. Both downstairs bedrooms open onto the kitchen. One also opens onto the back porch.


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u305/EmmanuelleM/071009_152601-1.jpg)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: twiggy on December 21, 2011, 03:39:44 PM
My dad recently found a hidden space in his house. This is my childhood home, a house that my dad has lived in for nearly 20 years, I would have thought that he knew every nook and cranny, but apparently not. When he and mom divorced a couple years ago, Dad had to get it reappraised and it turns out that the single story ranch style house I grew up in is actually, legally, a two-story house. Apparently there is a loft above the entryway that could open to either the living room or master bedroom, but it was drywalled over and hidden. Dad wants to remodel and make the unfinished space usable, but he also kind of wants to buy a new, smaller home now that it's just him.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on December 21, 2011, 05:40:18 PM
My dad recently found a hidden space in his house. This is my childhood home, a house that my dad has lived in for nearly 20 years, I would have thought that he knew every nook and cranny, but apparently not. When he and mom divorced a couple years ago, Dad had to get it reappraised and it turns out that the single story ranch style house I grew up in is actually, legally, a two-story house. Apparently there is a loft above the entryway that could open to either the living room or master bedroom, but it was drywalled over and hidden. Dad wants to remodel and make the unfinished space usable, but he also kind of wants to buy a new, smaller home now that it's just him.

Opening it up COULD make the house more appealing when it comes time to sell it...........but he might want to talk to a real estate agent about it..........because it will take time and money (more time & less money if he does it - less time & more money if he pays to have it done - depending on how good HE is at doing that sort of thing - there are people who should never touch a Do-it-yourself project because it will go wrong from the first time they touch the tape measure).............

Then there is the possible need for a work permit (contractor should be in charge of getting that if he hires one) - depending on where he lives.

Would it be "polite" of him to consider setting up the loft as a guest area for visiting family?  Lil Sis has a loft set up as her office with a table for playing cards or seating extra people (if there are more than the eight that her dining room can handle)...............there are ways to use that loft to make the house more appealing (and worth more)..............

After watching Income Property on HGTV, my fingers itch to do something like that - but my pocket book squeals like a dying bunny......it is afraid of the very idea.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sterling on December 27, 2011, 09:21:48 PM
My first house has lovely hardwood floors at one time.  Then a former owner GLUED shag carpet to in.  Right before I bought it the owner ripped up the carpet (it was burnt orange and ugly) to expose the floors not realizing it had been glued down.  We had to resand and finish the floors.  We don't know what kind of glue they used either.  The flooring guy we hired said it looked like tar.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on January 02, 2012, 02:21:05 PM
I don't think I've mentioned this one yet. We found a listing for a house that was 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, still under construction. It needed drywall, flooring and cabinetry, I think. The price was $60,000 and was on 1/2 an acre. We were so excited...plenty of room for the kids to run around outside, we could pick how we wanted it finished, etc. So we drive out there and park in front. When I got out of the car, I noticed a sign that said that where we had parked was not part of the property for sale, that the property line was 1 foot off the front porch! Since we had parked right next to the front porch we were on some other person's property. There was no road or curb...this house was several hundred feet behind (and on higher ground than) another house. I don't think it ever sold. It could have been usable if the 1/2 acre that went with the house for sale was not a steep, wooded hill. I still wonder how a house could get so far into construction without the other property owner putting a stop to it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on January 02, 2012, 09:00:53 PM
I don't think I've mentioned this one yet. We found a listing for a house that was 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, still under construction. It needed drywall, flooring and cabinetry, I think. The price was $60,000 and was on 1/2 an acre. We were so excited...plenty of room for the kids to run around outside, we could pick how we wanted it finished, etc. So we drive out there and park in front. When I got out of the car, I noticed a sign that said that where we had parked was not part of the property for sale, that the property line was 1 foot off the front porch! Since we had parked right next to the front porch we were on some other person's property. There was no road or curb...this house was several hundred feet behind (and on higher ground than) another house. I don't think it ever sold. It could have been usable if the 1/2 acre that went with the house for sale was not a steep, wooded hill. I still wonder how a house could get so far into construction without the other property owner putting a stop to it.

That's called a flag lot (because the lot for the house and driveway is shaped like a flag). They're legal in some communities and not others. I think they must have banned them where I live about 25 years ago, because I only see them in older neighborhoods.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on January 04, 2012, 02:15:41 PM
Under my carpet there was plywood --well, and an inch thick layer of very old glue. I had to use adhesive remover, which has very toxic fumes so I had to buy a gas mask. Fun times.


Who glues carpet on top of linoleum?

The same people who bolt carpet over beautiful terazzo tile floors. My best friend was astounded when the home inspection showed the tile under the carpet with half inch bolts every foot throughout the house. The tile is still beautiful, just pockmarked with holes from the bolts.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: flowersintheattic on January 20, 2012, 10:28:07 PM
We didn't see too much stuff while house hunting other than the seemingly popular toilets in random places. The house we bought, in fact, has a full bathroom in a mostly unfinished basement. It's a toilet, sink, and shower, all in the middle of the room. No walls around them. We have a roommate that lives in a finished bedroom in the basement who uses that as his main bathroom.

But I don't think any weird feature tops the house that FH was renting before we moved in. It had a secret room behind a bar in the basement. It was a cut out in the wall that opened when you pushed a hidden button in a bookcase next to it. The secret room had cement floors and display cases lining the walls. Similar to this: http://www.dickblick.com/products/claridge-sliding-door-display-cases/  except they didn't have shelves, just pegboard in the back, and the sliding doors locked. I'm convinced it used to be the home of an international illegal arms dealer. I can't imagine what else that room could have been used for.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on January 21, 2012, 09:29:20 AM
Just because someone might have had a lot of guns doesn't mean they're an illegal arms dealer.  It could be that they were in a 'secret' room to conceal them from potential thieves.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on January 21, 2012, 11:15:55 AM
Just because someone might have had a lot of guns doesn't mean they're an illegal arms dealer.  It could be that they were in a 'secret' room to conceal them from potential thieves.

But it's more fun to imagine the international arms dealer or the antiquities smuggler hiding their stash.  Much more fun than grandma's China.   ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on January 21, 2012, 11:44:08 AM
Or somebody who had a lot of trophies from when they were younger and that was their room to escape to and relive their "glory days".

A Susan Sugarbaker wanna-be a passle of rhinestone beauty crowns and possibly the old competition swimsuits and gowns...........

Some former jock with his trophies from age twelve to whenever he got too old to play and he goes in there wearing his old uniform (or warm up gear, in case he was a swimmer & it's too cold to run around in a Speedo competition suit in his fifties).................Evil says neither of these two can fit into their old clothes.............but they still look at the old photos while remembering............

An egg carver with a thousand carved eggs or a miniature maker with thousands of doll house furnishings complete down to tiny little containers of milk & eggs?  Snarky likes doll houses.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on January 21, 2012, 07:48:16 PM
That would make a great sewing room - pegs to hang things on, like the dress I took so long with that not only does it not fit it is no longer my style, but I love the fabric and am going to make scarves out of it. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: flowersintheattic on January 21, 2012, 08:51:43 PM
Just because someone might have had a lot of guns doesn't mean they're an illegal arms dealer.  It could be that they were in a 'secret' room to conceal them from potential thieves.

But it's more fun to imagine the international arms dealer or the antiquities smuggler hiding their stash.  Much more fun than grandma's China.   ;)

Exactly!

And to be fair, the cases may not have even been for guns. They could have been for trophies like VorFemme suggested, or something else. We just had absolutely no idea, since their landlord (who had lived there before FH and his friends started renting it) had it completely empty. His friends asked the landlord if he had any ideas about it, as well, and he said that it was empty when they looked at the house to buy it, as well. So we had to use our imagination. And an inconspicuous ranch house in a nice neighborhood in Omaha, Nebraska, is the perfect place for an international arms dealer to have his showroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on January 21, 2012, 11:21:21 PM
I hope I'm not repeating myself from earlier in the thread!  There is a weird thing right in my own dining room.

It says it's a humidistat.  It's on the wall next to the thermostat, so at one time it was either active or was intended to be used. 

There is no whole-house humidifier.  There is no duct work for there to BE a humidifier!  The heat in the house is baseboard electric heaters, which of course don't need ductwork.  There is no place in the house where there used to be ducts, or a big humidifier.  So why is there a control for one hanging on my dining room wall?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on January 22, 2012, 10:56:47 AM
Maybe it's really a camouflaged safe's combination dial?  I think it was an Agatha Christie story - a safe cost twice as much as it should (the bill was the only thing in the safe and a very valuable necklace was missing).  Turned out that the bill was a clue that the safe was a DOUBLE safe and the dial twisted open with a combination on the bill...............

Which is more fun to imagine than a humidifier that got disconnected decades ago.............
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on January 23, 2012, 10:00:45 AM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on January 23, 2012, 01:41:48 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on January 23, 2012, 02:30:50 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Why?  "Hey, free furnace!"

ETA that I wonder if maybe the former owners took it with them in revenge for the foreclosure, or someone just broke in.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: mandycorn on January 23, 2012, 03:37:44 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Why?  "Hey, free furnace!"


Along the same lines my parents looked at a home where someone had run off with the deck. All the photos the realtor had of the house showed a deck in the back yard but when they went to look at it, the back door opened out onto nothing and then 6 feet down, a cement pad where the deck had been.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: snowfire on January 23, 2012, 06:08:57 PM
Some people will steal anything that isn't bolted down.  And if they can pry it up, it wasn't bolted down well enough.  Many years ago we drove up to our cabin and saw a truck peeling out at high speed.

When we got to the cabin, the front door had been jimmied open and the six foot long CAST IRON claw foot bathtub was in the kitchen.  Obviously the truck carried the folks who had been trying to do a five finger requisition on our tub.  That sucker was heavy and extra long as it had been custom made for the previous owner.  It took six guys to move it back into the bathroom.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Isometric on January 23, 2012, 11:03:31 PM
Bright, blood red carpet. Wha?? Nothing goes with that!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Slartibartfast on January 24, 2012, 08:58:36 AM
Bright, blood red carpet. Wha?? Nothing goes with that!

Sure it does!  The room that eventually became my nursery had blood-red shag carpeting and HOT PINK walls when my parents bought the house.  They repainted the walls, but a few of my earliest memories involve that carpet.  (That house had different primary color carpeting in every room of the house, apparently, and different neon-color walls in each room too.  My mom says it was the most hideous house she has ever seen and they got it for a steal because they were willing to paint!)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on January 24, 2012, 10:53:46 AM
It wasn't something I personally saw, but a neighbor of a coworker had a huge custom carpet put in their house  -- a giant Washington Redskins logo (US football team)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on January 24, 2012, 11:04:48 AM
Bright, blood red carpet. Wha?? Nothing goes with that!

LOL!  Careful there!   :(

When we bought our house (in 1970) it was brand new so we got to choose everything that was in it.  Our family room (sunken) had fairly dark wood paneling and bright fiery red shag carpet.  (I think the actual name of it was something like "Painted Desert".)

We had no trouble finding furniture that looked very nice with it! 

It has since been replaced -- both carpeting and furniture, but it wasn't because we grew to hate it.  It was just that it got old and worn out.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Thipu1 on January 24, 2012, 11:15:11 AM
For some unknown reason, the in law's house in Vermont had an unshielded toilet in the garage.  It was convenient when someone was doing yard work and they did hang a shower curtain around it to provide some privacy.  still, it was an odd thing to see.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on January 24, 2012, 11:45:18 AM
Bright, blood red carpet. Wha?? Nothing goes with that!

Sure it does!  The room that eventually became my nursery had blood-red shag carpeting and HOT PINK walls when my parents bought the house.  They repainted the walls, but a few of my earliest memories involve that carpet.  (That house had different primary color carpeting in every room of the house, apparently, and different neon-color walls in each room too.  My mom says it was the most hideous house she has ever seen and they got it for a steal because they were willing to paint!)

When I bought my first house, it was 15 years old. Every single room was painted a dull mustard yellow with beige trim. Really. Take a minute to picture how that looked. It was the original builder paint. Every room, the inside of every closet, everything. We were the third owner, and the previous two owners lived with it like that, not so much as repainting the kitchen. We didn't get it for a steal <sigh>, but it had sat vacant for 6 months at a time when houses in our area usually sold pretty fast. If nothing else, I'm amazed that the realtor didn't suggest to the owner that it might move faster if she had the darn place painted. Over the next few years, we repainted every single room, including the garage. I've posted elsewhere about the horrible nightmare the trim paint turned out to be.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: rashea on January 24, 2012, 12:32:48 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Someone stole a bridge. http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11280/1180364-455.stm Somehow that helps put things into prospective.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on January 24, 2012, 01:06:47 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Someone stole a bridge. http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11280/1180364-455.stm Somehow that helps put things into prospective.

Sounds like really ambitious scrap metal thieves. That's a lot of work!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Isometric on January 24, 2012, 04:29:27 PM
Oops, sorry Slartibartfast & gramma dishes, I'm sure your red carpet looked lovely! It was just unusual to see, especially since the house was overpriced!

This was flat carpet, not shag, so I guess it could be fun to pretend you're going to the Oscars??
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Slartibartfast on January 24, 2012, 04:56:33 PM
Oops, sorry Slartibartfast & gramma dishes, I'm sure your red carpet looked lovely! It was just unusual to see, especially since the house was overpriced!

This was flat carpet, not shag, so I guess it could be fun to pretend you're going to the Oscars??

Oh, no, I'm pretty sure it was hideous  :P  I only have vague memories of that house (we moved when I was not quite four) and we don't have any pictures from before they repainted, so I have to take my parents' word for it.  From the pictures I've seen of the living room and the kitchen, though, I think the previous owners must have gotten some great deals on leftover paint from a kindergarten or a circus or something!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: White Dragon on January 24, 2012, 06:34:39 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

We lived in a rental house in northern Ontario for a while.

While there, we learned that in that area, homeowners don't own their furnaces or their hot water heaters.
Both appliances are rented - from the gas utility.

It always struck me as very strange - and probably a conflict of interest - that you had to rent your gas-powered appliances from the company you had to buy gas from.
Cause really, it wasn't in the utility's best interest to provide you with efficient appliances. The more gas they burned, the more money the gas utility made.

Very strange.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: flowersintheattic on January 24, 2012, 07:14:47 PM
It wasn't something I personally saw, but a neighbor of a coworker had a huge custom carpet put in their house  -- a giant Washington Redskins logo (US football team)

There's a house currently on the market a few blocks from me that has bright blue carpet with the Creighton University Bluejays logo. http://www.sportslogos.net/team.php?id=652 (the carpet is the word "Jays" and the bird). All I could think when I saw it was that they probably had to special order it through the University....and adding the University logo to anything creates at least a 50% markup...so that carpet had to cost a fortune! And it'll probably be the first thing to go when someone else buys the house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Pinky830 on January 24, 2012, 07:46:05 PM
It wasn't something I personally saw, but a neighbor of a coworker had a huge custom carpet put in their house  -- a giant Washington Redskins logo (US football team)

There's a house currently on the market a few blocks from me that has bright blue carpet with the Creighton University Bluejays logo. http://www.sportslogos.net/team.php?id=652 (the carpet is the word "Jays" and the bird). All I could think when I saw it was that they probably had to special order it through the University....and adding the University logo to anything creates at least a 50% markup...so that carpet had to cost a fortune! And it'll probably be the first thing to go when someone else buys the house.

There was a bunch of Georgia Tech stuff, like an area rug etc, in the basement game room when I bought my house. None of it was permanent. I'm finally getting around to redecorating that room, and I will correct the universe's basic error in making it a GA Tech room. It is about to be painted red with UGA decor.  ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Harriet Jones on January 24, 2012, 07:50:07 PM

There was a bunch of Georgia Tech stuff, like an area rug etc, in the basement game room when I bought my house. None of it was permanent. I'm finally getting around to redecorating that room, and I will correct the universe's basic error in making it a GA Tech room. It is about to be painted red with UGA decor.  ;D

Eww!  ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on January 24, 2012, 08:04:47 PM
It wasn't something I personally saw, but a neighbor of a coworker had a huge custom carpet put in their house  -- a giant Washington Redskins logo (US football team)

There's a house currently on the market a few blocks from me that has bright blue carpet with the Creighton University Bluejays logo. http://www.sportslogos.net/team.php?id=652 (the carpet is the word "Jays" and the bird). All I could think when I saw it was that they probably had to special order it through the University....and adding the University logo to anything creates at least a 50% markup...so that carpet had to cost a fortune! And it'll probably be the first thing to go when someone else buys the house.

There was a bunch of Georgia Tech stuff, like an area rug etc, in the basement game room when I bought my house. None of it was permanent. I'm finally getting around to redecorating that room, and I will correct the universe's basic error in making it a GA Tech room. It is about to be painted red with UGA decor.  ;D

I would bet that you could get Georgia Tech fans to haul the stuff away from your house...........
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kareng57 on January 24, 2012, 08:44:48 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Why?  "Hey, free furnace!"

ETA that I wonder if maybe the former owners took it with them in revenge for the foreclosure, or someone just broke in.


Could be, I know that around here if you buy a foreclosure, it's "as is".  If the previous owners choose to strew garbage all over the place or kick in the walls, there's no recourse.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on January 25, 2012, 02:29:55 AM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

We lived in a rental house in northern Ontario for a while.

While there, we learned that in that area, homeowners don't own their furnaces or their hot water heaters.
Both appliances are rented - from the gas utility.

It always struck me as very strange - and probably a conflict of interest - that you had to rent your gas-powered appliances from the company you had to buy gas from.
Cause really, it wasn't in the utility's best interest to provide you with efficient appliances. The more gas they burned, the more money the gas utility made.

Very strange.

My electric water heater is rented from the local power company. They do care somewhat about the condition of their appliances because they are responsible for all the repairs. A sputtering/bad heater would mean an angry homeowner and a house call, and possibly a new unit.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on January 25, 2012, 11:26:50 AM
I HAD to buy a smart meter but I cannot get a clear answer on who actually owns it. I've asked the elec. company, a few electrictions, the installer and the guy that signed off on the installation and NOBODY knows who owns it. If it's not me then I want a refund or at least a substantial maintenance/usage discount or I'll send them a rental fee. That meter was not cheap. Wonder if I have to add it to the house insurance.

Do you have a receipt?  If you have the receipt that clearly shows you paid for it then I'd think you own it.  But on the other hand, there are some very silly "laws" and rules out there!   ;D

It might almost be better if they own it because then they'd be responsible for any necessary repairs -- right?  Maybe.  :-\
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on January 25, 2012, 11:54:15 AM
Bright, blood red carpet. Wha?? Nothing goes with that!

Sure it does!  The room that eventually became my nursery had blood-red shag carpeting and HOT PINK walls when my parents bought the house.  They repainted the walls, but a few of my earliest memories involve that carpet.  (That house had different primary color carpeting in every room of the house, apparently, and different neon-color walls in each room too.  My mom says it was the most hideous house she has ever seen and they got it for a steal because they were willing to paint!)
That was the fashion in the hippie days -- neon wallpaint.  I vividly remember visiting a model house with my mother in Hawaii, so it must have been 1969 or thereabouts.  Every room was painted/papered in hot pink, acid yellow, blazing orange, and so on. With carpets a shade or two darker, IIRC, and at least one of the smaller bedrooms had neon psychedelic wallpaper.  ("Look, I'm tripping and I've never TOUCHED acid!")  >:D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on January 25, 2012, 12:18:18 PM
Bright, blood red carpet. Wha?? Nothing goes with that!

Sure it does!  The room that eventually became my nursery had blood-red shag carpeting and HOT PINK walls when my parents bought the house.  They repainted the walls, but a few of my earliest memories involve that carpet.  (That house had different primary color carpeting in every room of the house, apparently, and different neon-color walls in each room too.  My mom says it was the most hideous house she has ever seen and they got it for a steal because they were willing to paint!)
That was the fashion in the hippie days -- neon wallpaint.  I vividly remember visiting a model house with my mother in Hawaii, so it must have been 1969 or thereabouts.  Every room was painted/papered in hot pink, acid yellow, blazing orange, and so on. With carpets a shade or two darker, IIRC, and at least one of the smaller bedrooms had neon psychedelic wallpaper.  ("Look, I'm tripping and I've never TOUCHED acid!")  >:D
It's not over yet. I live in a large condo building, and I was walking down the hallway awhile back when someone was coming out of their unit, and I glanced inside. I thought I was going to lose my eyesight. Neon green, yellow and pink were the colors I saw, but I bet there was more. That was only the hall way and part of the living room that I could see.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on January 25, 2012, 01:04:40 PM
When I moved into my own bedroom after sharing a room with my sister, she painted the walls tangerine orange with white trim.  It actually looked pretty good, except that it made the room seem quite a bit smaller.   This was the incident where I was going to paint the walls in my new bedroom (the one that had belonged to my brother) and discovered that he hadn't moved his posters, he had just painted around them.  Fortunately the unpainted areas were approximately the same size as most of my astronomy posters. 

What my mother had to say about my brother's painting job when she saw what he'd done was not E-Hell approved but very funny.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wulfie on January 25, 2012, 01:13:49 PM
This was the incident where I was going to paint the walls in my new bedroom (the one that had belonged to my brother) and discovered that he hadn't moved his posters, he had just painted around them.  Fortunately the unpainted areas were approximately the same size as most of my astronomy posters. 

What my mother had to say about my brother's painting job when she saw what he'd done was not E-Hell approved but very funny.

We had "professional" painters do this! When we bought one of the buildings, we had painters paint the community room. We went to rearrange the book shelves (empty) and a few other moveable items and discovered that the painters had not moved them at all when they painted. They simply painted around them. They then tried to deny that their staff did so, security camera footage is a great thing! We were really tempted to stick a post it note over the signature line of the payment check and write around it (not sign it)

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on January 25, 2012, 01:20:55 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Why?  "Hey, free furnace!"

ETA that I wonder if maybe the former owners took it with them in revenge for the foreclosure, or someone just broke in.

Could be, I know that around here if you buy a foreclosure, it's "as is".  If the previous owners choose to strew garbage all over the place or kick in the walls, there's no recourse.

Well, it turned out to be moot, because we hit a glitch in the paperwork for the offer, so this house is off the table.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: exitzero on January 25, 2012, 01:55:57 PM
This was the incident where I was going to paint the walls in my new bedroom (the one that had belonged to my brother) and discovered that he hadn't moved his posters, he had just painted around them.  Fortunately the unpainted areas were approximately the same size as most of my astronomy posters. 

What my mother had to say about my brother's painting job when she saw what he'd done was not E-Hell approved but very funny.

We had "professional" painters do this! When we bought one of the buildings, we had painters paint the community room. We went to rearrange the book shelves (empty) and a few other moveable items and discovered that the painters had not moved them at all when they painted. They simply painted around them. They then tried to deny that their staff did so, security camera footage is a great thing! We were really tempted to stick a post it note over the signature line of the payment check and write around it (not sign it)

Did they think that someone broke in, moved the furniture, painted the space back to the original color, then moved the furniture back? How on earth could the claim they hadn't done it????
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wulfie on January 25, 2012, 02:03:07 PM
This was the incident where I was going to paint the walls in my new bedroom (the one that had belonged to my brother) and discovered that he hadn't moved his posters, he had just painted around them.  Fortunately the unpainted areas were approximately the same size as most of my astronomy posters. 

What my mother had to say about my brother's painting job when she saw what he'd done was not E-Hell approved but very funny.

We had "professional" painters do this! When we bought one of the buildings, we had painters paint the community room. We went to rearrange the book shelves (empty) and a few other moveable items and discovered that the painters had not moved them at all when they painted. They simply painted around them. They then tried to deny that their staff did so, security camera footage is a great thing! We were really tempted to stick a post it note over the signature line of the payment check and write around it (not sign it)

Did they think that someone broke in, moved the furniture, painted the space back to the original color, then moved the furniture back? How on earth could the claim they hadn't done it????

No idea. They just tried to claim that the painters had painted according to the contract. Never mind that we paid extra for them to move everything and it was very obvious what they had done. The color difference was not so major that it would show up clearly in photos but it was very obvious to anyone looking at the wall. We simply copied off footage of their people painting around the bookcase and not moving them. They ended up coming back and painting correctly but it was a huge hassle. In the end cost us nearly twice what the original quote was because we had to buy twice the paint than what we had budgeted for.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: WestAussieGirl on January 25, 2012, 04:05:29 PM

Interesting, here in Oz were own all household appliances except for the electricity meters, water meter and gas meters hooked up to an external source. Which is very strange because the elec. meter I HAD to buy a smart meter but I cannot get a clear answer on who actually owns it. I've asked the elec. company, a few electrictions, the installer and the guy that signed off on the installation and NOBODY knows who owns it. If it's not me then I want a refund or at least a substantial maintenance/usage discount or I'll send them a rental fee. That meter was not cheap. Wonder if I have to add it to the house insurance.


If you are in WA, I can answer that one.  You don't own it and when you move you can't take it with you.  The money you pay is an installation fee not a purchase price.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Blondie on January 26, 2012, 03:05:44 PM
Oh I have a couple...

Growing up there was a very pretty house across the street, but it was built sideways.... Front door facing the neighbors property, not the street. In addition there was a hidden room under the stairs, behind the fireplace, that ran the width of the house, so probably 5ftx20ft, not a small space, but hard to access. It didn't seem to have been built for anything, but the neighbors always wondered what it was there for. My Great Aunt (married into the family) came to visit, and it turns out her parents had actually had the strange sideways house built. Apparently her mother had liked the design for the front so well that when it didn't fit properly on the lot, they built sideways. And the space behind the fireplace was builders error. they built the house 5 feet too long, and rather than adding it to a room, hid it...

Out house now was actually on the market for a good year before we bought it, and I think I know why- it has spectacular 10ft ceilings, crown moulding, and a fantastic outdoor space. However, this was a little hard to see, as the entire first floor was painters tape blue. The crown moulding, baseboard, and window casings were all a slightly darker shade. Blue fridge, blue oven, blue doors, strangely- pink counters and sink, and BRIGHT RED front door. The owners told us they were going for a midwestern/Texas look... We tried to nod politely. This was interesting.... But it was nothing compared to the basement. Maroon walls, matching trim, sparkly popcorn ceiling, and liver pink rug. It was like walking into an organ throwing a disco. Five coats of paint later it is a livable grey, and the carpeting met its untimely demise.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on January 26, 2012, 03:18:34 PM
...    the space behind the fireplace was builders error. they built the house 5 feet too long, and rather than adding it to a room, hid it...

Would it be possible to knock through a wall and add a more "traditional" doorway into this space?  I can think of a million and one ways to use it if you could more easily get into it.  Or could someone just knock out the whole wall and add the space to already existing rooms?

I've always wanted a house with a hidden "mystery room".   :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Wulfie on January 26, 2012, 03:24:18 PM
Oh I have a couple...

Growing up there was a very pretty house across the street, but it was built sideways.... Front door facing the neighbors property, not the street. In addition there was a hidden room under the stairs, behind the fireplace, that ran the width of the house, so probably 5ftx20ft, not a small space, but hard to access.

I saw a house like that once. The extra space was actually a bomb shelter! The builder was positive that Seattle was going to get bombed by The Soviets so built a shelter under the stairs with access to the fireplace for cooking. It was REALLY weird!

On that note, I saw on House Hunter's International where every house they showed either had a bomb shelter in the unit or had easy access to one. I think it was in Jordan or Israel.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on January 26, 2012, 03:42:50 PM
A house in my neighborhood was apparently built backwards and upside down on a slope.  The public rooms are on the second floor.  So, you go up the hill and around to the back  to enter the living room, or you can go through a side door on the lower level into the bedroom area.  The upper level kitchen door in front currently has steps and a deck, but for the first twenty or thirty years, it just opened into space (I think it was blocked on the inside). 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on January 26, 2012, 06:20:32 PM
Friends of my parents had a house that was built on a hillside.  You entered the house through the attic to a little entry room.  Then you went down the stairs to the main floor where the kitchen, living room, etc. were.  You went down one more flight to get to the bedrooms.  I imagine it was great for sleeping in the summer but a mite chilly in the winter.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Blondie on January 27, 2012, 11:50:57 AM
...    the space behind the fireplace was builders error. they built the house 5 feet too long, and rather than adding it to a room, hid it...

Would it be possible to knock through a wall and add a more "traditional" doorway into this space?  I can think of a million and one ways to use it if you could more easily get into it.  Or could someone just knock out the whole wall and add the space to already existing rooms?

I've always wanted a house with a hidden "mystery room".   :)

Nope- at some point they extended it back to include the coat closet, but one wall is the back side of the fireplace, and apparently there are building regulations about how much of a berth that needs. Last time I was over, it was just empty.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on January 27, 2012, 01:38:23 PM
Friends of my parents had a house that was built on a hillside.  You entered the house through the attic to a little entry room.  Then you went down the stairs to the main floor where the kitchen, living room, etc. were.  You went down one more flight to get to the bedrooms.  I imagine it was great for sleeping in the summer but a mite chilly in the winter.

I lived in a house that was built on the side of a huge rock (aka, the Sugar Loaf in Rio, which is basically a 400m tall block of granite). The house was built vertically. You would enter a little lobby, with a natural rock face for a wall, a staircase going up and a garage to your right. The next floor had a living room and dining room. Then, the next had an office, a bedroom and a kitchen, which was not very handy for a dinner party. Another flight of stairs and you had a TV room and another bedroom. Then came the last bedroom and a kind of shed. Then a tiny pool (more like a hot tub) and then a half flight up to a deck.

Man, I had great legs back then.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Daquiri40 on January 28, 2012, 03:00:15 PM
Quote
Another one near my ILs was listed as a two car attached garage. We pull up, and the driveway is only 10' wide, leading to a 9' garage door. Curious, we actually did go inside, to find a garage that is 35' deep, so two cars DO fit! But, there was no back garage door or driveway that would allow egress for the first car.
The garages are technically two car because you can fit one car behind the other.  There are condos built around here that have these type of garages.  I looked at the model.  The car in back, backs out and then the car in front can move.

The condo itself was so small, I was claustrophobic just looking at it.  The master bathroom was so tiny, I think 4 squares of tile covered the floor.  The big selling point was the basement.  It was rough plumbed for a third bathroom and you could finish the rest of the basement for extra living space. 

The living room was so small, I sat on the couch and stretched out my legs and reached the other side of the room!  And I'm only 5'3".
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on February 07, 2012, 05:16:19 PM
We just made an offer on a foreclosed house to use as a rental property. It's very cheap - one reason being that the furnace was stolen.

Wow. How would they get it out of the house? Wouldn't they have to dismantle it?

And why??

Why?  "Hey, free furnace!"


Along the same lines my parents looked at a home where someone had run off with the deck. All the photos the realtor had of the house showed a deck in the back yard but when they went to look at it, the back door opened out onto nothing and then 6 feet down, a cement pad where the deck had been.

After looking at several houses that would not pass the inspection required to get a VA/USDA mortgage here in the US, we had to specify to our realtor that we only want to see houses that would pass. We have seen houses missing: all the kitchen cabinets, the air conditioner (Florida, it is required just to keep the walls from molding), heater, water heater, shower faucets, kitchen sinks, anything you could possibly imagine. Most of the houses included in the above were fairly new, and the prior owner had been the first person to own that house. There is a movement in our state government to locate and criminally prosecute these owners for stealing the furnishings of the homes, especially since the house must be bought with a conventional loan or by an investor with cash (neither require inspections).
We also found houses with collapsed ceilings, DIY exposed wiring, walls reinforced with cardboard, etc. There are entire communities with half finished houses, as the housing bubble burst, many of the construction companies went under and the houses sat vacant with no doors or windows for years.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hobish on February 08, 2012, 12:18:01 PM
That is federal, not just Maryland. If it doesn't have a closet it isn't a bedroom. Realtors might call it a bedroom, but when you try to have it appraised to sell the place, nope. No closet, no bedroom. Other things vary from state to state (like ceiling height) but that one is everywhere. Also basement rooms do not count. The square footage contributes to the overall value; but it is not part of the overall gross living area so any rooms down there are extra. If you have 3 bedrooms on the main level and 2 in the basement it is a 3 bedroom house.
Thus concludes our appraisal class for today.  :)
How does one distinguish a basement from a lower level?  Our house is a split foyer; you enter on a landing, and go up 7 steps to the upper level (3 bedrooms, kitchen, dining room, 2 baths) or down 6 steps to the lower level (family room, 1 large bedroom, laundry, 1 bath).  At the back of the house is a sliding door to the back yard from the family room, so the lower level is not entirely belowground.

So do I have a 4 bedroom house, as it was sold to us, or only a 3 bedroom?

It has been so long since I looked at one of those I had to ask someone. It varies from county to county, and in cases where the county is not clear an appraisal would have to show homes of similar circumstance. So if one was called a 3 bedroom, all would have to be called 3 bedroom, with sales data to support it. It also depends on who would be doing the underwriting in a lending scenario, apparently, which honestly was news to me. I learned something today.  :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on February 08, 2012, 12:22:24 PM
My house is similar.  The front door comes in at mid-level.  Upstairs has 2 bedrooms, the bathroom, kitchen and living room.  Downstairs is a rec room, bedroom, washroom and laundry room.  It was listed as 2+1 bedrooms, 1.5 baths.

ETA:  But the basement square footage still wasn't calculated into the total square footage.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: hobish on February 08, 2012, 12:27:29 PM

I love houses like that. For some reason they always feel bigger inside than they should (to me), and open and pretty.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on February 08, 2012, 12:42:11 PM
I always think that when my best friend's parents eventually sell their house, the estate agent is going to have an absolute field day describing/selling it. Her dad is an architect, and designed the house from scratch about 25 years ago. It's wonderful, but quite bizarre, to be honest.

It's built on a slope, with the front door at the top. Inside the house, there are no less than four levels going down, and three going up.

You go in through the front door, and there's a large open-plan kitchen/dining room, with a very spacious attic above. There's also a utility room off that, with two areas, one with the washing machine / tumble drier, and one with two huge chest freezers and a built in wine rack. Then you go down a small flight of stairs to a long landing with a toilet/cloakroom and walk-in cupboard. Another short flight of stairs leads you to a large dining room, with french doors onto a patio, and a connected study/library. A third flight of stairs then takes you down to the main living area, with a large 'formal' sitting room and a slightly smaller 'casual' sitting room. There's also another toilet, and another walk-in cupboard. There's another set of french doors leading from the 'formal' sitting room out onto another patio, which looks over a large lawn. They just got a small fountain installed back there as well.

Also from the dining room level, you can go up a longer flight of stairs to a landing with two bedrooms, a large bathroom and a walk-in airing cupboard. Up another short flight of stairs there's two more bedrooms, one of which has been turned into a study so that the mum could work from home. Up the final set of stairs, there's the master bedroom (which is massive), with its own ensuite - which has a bath and separate shower cubicle as well.

Like I said, it's completely wonderful, even if it's huge, and a complete nightmare if you're not good with stairs. I stayed there for about a week a few years ago (while my parents were on a second honeymoon), and my thighs looked wonderful in a very short space of time!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Giggity on February 08, 2012, 07:20:23 PM
Faithlessone, I would love to see floor plans of that place! It sounds gorgeous. I love individual non-cookie-cutter homes.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Marisol on March 01, 2012, 03:14:56 PM
Oops, sorry Slartibartfast & gramma dishes, I'm sure your red carpet looked lovely! It was just unusual to see, especially since the house was overpriced!

I've never liked red carpets.  You see them in a lot of churches and I always think it looks too harsh for what should be a peaceful setting.  And if you wed in a church with a red carpet you ought to check your colors.  If you choose a jewel tones purple your wedding will look like it is for the purple hat society!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JennJenn68 on March 01, 2012, 03:18:33 PM
Oops, sorry Slartibartfast & gramma dishes, I'm sure your red carpet looked lovely! It was just unusual to see, especially since the house was overpriced!

I've never liked red carpets.  You see them in a lot of churches and I always think it looks too harsh for what should be a peaceful setting.  And if you wed in a church with a red carpet you ought to check your colors.  If you choose a jewel tones purple your wedding will look like it is for the purple hat society!

I remember the first time we walked through the house we would eventually end up buying.  "Like the kitchen floor... Nice fireplace... Good, three bedrooms... OH MY GOD!  That red carpet in the master bedroom has to go!"

We've been living in this house now for fifteen years.  Guess which feature I still haven't gotten around to ditching? ;D

I'm terminally lazy, I must admit.  And one can get used to almost anything when you live with it long enough.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on March 01, 2012, 03:35:56 PM
Sold this house rather than bought it (but it got a LOT of comments) - mauve (dusty pink) carpet in the living room and master bedroom (also closet & hallways - kids' bedrooms were blue). 

I got asked if there was harwood UNDER the carpet and asked several more times if I was SURE that there wasn't (seven year old house that we had built from on a vacant lot) hardwood under that carpet (I really think that she wanted to be able to rip the carpet up to check for herself but I wasn't going for that).

Once the mauve & blue (striped) couch and other accessories that tied the carpet to the decor scheme - it didn't look "right".  But the first comment on the bottom of the information sheet was a new flooring allowance...................
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on March 18, 2012, 06:19:11 PM
But I don't think any weird feature tops the house that FH was renting before we moved in. It had a secret room behind a bar in the basement. It was a cut out in the wall that opened when you pushed a hidden button in a bookcase next to it. The secret room had cement floors and display cases lining the walls. Similar to this: http://www.dickblick.com/products/claridge-sliding-door-display-cases/  except they didn't have shelves, just pegboard in the back, and the sliding doors locked. I'm convinced it used to be the home of an international illegal arms dealer. I can't imagine what else that room could have been used for.

So I just chatted with my Mom, who's a realtor in the area, and she has a couple of amusing theories... 1) Old, leftover bomb shelter; 2) "Vacation" home for 1930s-era Chicago mobsters who occasionally had to leave town to get away from the heat. (Apparently, some of them did, in fact, have homes in the area for that reason, and might well have added a secret room to hide their illegal booze.)

:-)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on March 18, 2012, 06:25:41 PM
I can see the logic behind a bomb shelter.  Heck, I wish I had a bomb shelter.  If I was building a house I probably would include a bomb shelter.  But I would call it a tornado shelter and I would only stock it with supplies to last a few hours. 

I live in tornado alley.  Most years I spend a couple nights in the basement hiding from tornado-bearing storms. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on March 18, 2012, 11:11:29 PM
I always told DH that if I ever lived in Tornado Alley again, I was going to have a tornado-cellar if I had to go out in the back yard and dig one with a teaspoon!

And where have I come the nearest to a tornado?  Right here in Maryland, which is nowhere near Tornado Alley!  An F-1 about 15 years ago came through my back yard.  Minor damage, mostly to the neighbor's trees, which got their tops twisted off and thrown in my yard.  It also sucked the glass out of a storm window that was already cracked, and tore off the top of the bird feeder and filled just one of the two compartments with dirt.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: flowersintheattic on March 20, 2012, 09:09:29 PM
But I don't think any weird feature tops the house that FH was renting before we moved in. It had a secret room behind a bar in the basement. It was a cut out in the wall that opened when you pushed a hidden button in a bookcase next to it. The secret room had cement floors and display cases lining the walls. Similar to this: http://www.dickblick.com/products/claridge-sliding-door-display-cases/  except they didn't have shelves, just pegboard in the back, and the sliding doors locked. I'm convinced it used to be the home of an international illegal arms dealer. I can't imagine what else that room could have been used for.

So I just chatted with my Mom, who's a realtor in the area, and she has a couple of amusing theories... 1) Old, leftover bomb shelter; 2) "Vacation" home for 1930s-era Chicago mobsters who occasionally had to leave town to get away from the heat. (Apparently, some of them did, in fact, have homes in the area for that reason, and might well have added a secret room to hide their illegal booze.)

:-)

Ooh, these are actually pretty good theories! Definitely not ones we ever thought of. And I didn't know that Chicago mobsters had "vacation" homes in the area....I might have to do some more research into my hometown...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Cydrius on March 21, 2012, 10:41:56 AM
Hoo boy, where to start, where to start.

When my father visited the house we now live in for the first time, before we entered the building, our estate agent told us not to pay attention to the decoration. It's a good thing he did too, because we were blown away when he opened the door. You see, the current owners had... odd tastes in decoration. Just to name what comes to mind, going room by room:

Living Room:

Hallway:

Kitchen and dining room:

Laundry Room:

Master Bedroom:

Extra Bedroom #1 (pretty large)

Extra Bedroom #2 (much smaller)

There was more to it, but those are what I still remember, five years after the fact. It was very, very colorful, very loud, and very far from matching.

When we bought the house from them (the layout was great, the advantages was great, the place was well cared-for despite being garish and had some pretty clever features and a lot of storage), the owners seemed to think we loved their decoration and that we'd keep it intact. Of course, as soon as we moved in, all that madness was torn down and replaced with more normal stuff.

Another one of the houses we visited claimed to have three bedrooms. The third "bedroom" had the right size and furniture, but it had no walls and was open directly to the hallway on two sides. I don't even know how to describe it.

Ah, memories, memories.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: alegria on March 21, 2012, 12:58:47 PM
You know, I can see having a hot pink laundry room if that's your thing.  It's not usually a big room, you're not in there constantly, and if it makes you smile then why the heck not?  Doesn't mean the next owners will like it, of course... :D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: KenveeB on March 21, 2012, 01:25:48 PM
You know, I can see having a hot pink laundry room if that's your thing.  It's not usually a big room, you're not in there constantly, and if it makes you smile then why the heck not?  Doesn't mean the next owners will like it, of course... :D

Yeah, the laundry room seems like a place you can easily go wild. Mine is robin's egg blue. Not a color I'd use anywhere else in the house, but it makes the small space cheerful.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on March 21, 2012, 07:46:52 PM
Not only that, I'm sure you can get paint for a laundry room cheaply if you aren't really choosy about the color. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on March 22, 2012, 10:46:04 AM
Depending on how well it was done, I just might keep the table legs on the ceiling, the fountain in the living room, and maybe the kitchen mosaic, simply because my sense of humor twists that way.  I might even be tempted to keep the navy blue in the master bedroom, but the wood ceiling canopy would not play well with my wrought iron canopy bed.

Everything else can go.   :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on March 22, 2012, 10:58:06 AM
In this summer humidity, there is no way I'd want a fountain in the living room!

Sounds neat, though.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on March 22, 2012, 12:42:23 PM
In a really dry climate, having a fountain in the living room just might be heaven. :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Grancalla on March 22, 2012, 12:54:43 PM
My family moved into a new house when I was in high school. One day, mom told me to go to the living room and count the windows.
Okay... 1,2
Now, go outside and count the windows.
1,2... 3?
It turns out, one of the previous owners had covered over the middle window in the living room in order to hang a very large piece of art. We'd lived there almost a year before anyone noticed.


And from house hunting:
In one house I looked at, the owner had "redone" the garage as a shrine to a local college football team. The walls were painted BRIGHT red. The floor was either painted, or had matching red carpet, I don't remember which. The side with the garage door was covered up, like the window in my old house, with the door itself still left on. It wasn't heated or air-conditioned, either.
But it gets weirder. The man's daughter had been helping show us around the place, and she'd had an unusual name. As I was driving away, I realized he'd also named his daughter after the football team...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Blondie on March 22, 2012, 01:09:08 PM
And from house hunting:
In one house I looked at, the owner had "redone" the garage as a shrine to a local college football team. The walls were painted BRIGHT red. The floor was either painted, or had matching red carpet, I don't remember which. The side with the garage door was covered up, like the window in my old house, with the door itself still left on. It wasn't heated or air-conditioned, either.
But it gets weirder. The man's daughter had been helping show us around the place, and she'd had an unusual name. As I was driving away, I realized he'd also named his daughter after the football team...

Team name at least? I am driving myself crazy thinking about a kid somewhere out there named something like 49iera....
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on March 22, 2012, 01:10:30 PM
And from house hunting:
In one house I looked at, the owner had "redone" the garage as a shrine to a local college football team. The walls were painted BRIGHT red. The floor was either painted, or had matching red carpet, I don't remember which. The side with the garage door was covered up, like the window in my old house, with the door itself still left on. It wasn't heated or air-conditioned, either.
But it gets weirder. The man's daughter had been helping show us around the place, and she'd had an unusual name. As I was driving away, I realized he'd also named his daughter after the football team...

Team name at least? I am driving myself crazy thinking about a kid somewhere out there named something like 49iera....

With all that red, maybe the Cornhuskers? Did he name his daughter "Bugeater" (the old name for the team)?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Grancalla on March 22, 2012, 02:38:20 PM
And from house hunting:
In one house I looked at, the owner had "redone" the garage as a shrine to a local college football team. The walls were painted BRIGHT red. The floor was either painted, or had matching red carpet, I don't remember which. The side with the garage door was covered up, like the window in my old house, with the door itself still left on. It wasn't heated or air-conditioned, either.
But it gets weirder. The man's daughter had been helping show us around the place, and she'd had an unusual name. As I was driving away, I realized he'd also named his daughter after the football team...

Team name at least? I am driving myself crazy thinking about a kid somewhere out there named something like 49iera....

He'd named her Crimson (for Crimson Tide). Not a bad name, really, until you realize where he got it.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on March 22, 2012, 03:32:27 PM
Oh good. I'd hate to think of someone going through life being called "Bugeater"
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on March 22, 2012, 03:38:30 PM
He'd named her Crimson (for Crimson Tide). Not a bad name, really, until you realize where he got it.

Did he have another child named Tyler?   ("And these are my children, Crimson 'n Ty.")
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Sirius on March 25, 2012, 03:16:40 PM
And from house hunting:
In one house I looked at, the owner had "redone" the garage as a shrine to a local college football team. The walls were painted BRIGHT red. The floor was either painted, or had matching red carpet, I don't remember which. The side with the garage door was covered up, like the window in my old house, with the door itself still left on. It wasn't heated or air-conditioned, either.
But it gets weirder. The man's daughter had been helping show us around the place, and she'd had an unusual name. As I was driving away, I realized he'd also named his daughter after the football team...

I hope for the daughter's sake that the local team was the Robins.  (Crimson?  It could have been worse - the two local teams here are the Ducks and the Beavers.  Can anyone tell where I am?)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on March 25, 2012, 06:07:31 PM
I hope for the daughter's sake that the local team was the Robins.  (Crimson?  It could have been worse - the two local teams here are the Ducks and the Beavers.  Can anyone tell where I am?)
Crimson Tide, University of Alabama.  I had to google it.

Like another poster I was concerned they were in Nebraska and the child was named Cornhusker or Herbie (the Cornusker's mascot).
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: KimberlyM on March 26, 2012, 11:36:01 AM
And from house hunting:
In one house I looked at, the owner had "redone" the garage as a shrine to a local college football team. The walls were painted BRIGHT red. The floor was either painted, or had matching red carpet, I don't remember which. The side with the garage door was covered up, like the window in my old house, with the door itself still left on. It wasn't heated or air-conditioned, either.
But it gets weirder. The man's daughter had been helping show us around the place, and she'd had an unusual name. As I was driving away, I realized he'd also named his daughter after the football team...

I hope for the daughter's sake that the local team was the Robins.  (Crimson?  It could have been worse - the two local teams here are the Ducks and the Beavers.  Can anyone tell where I am?)

Oregon...waves from duck territory!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Thipu1 on March 27, 2012, 11:00:06 AM
A relative's house has a weird but wonderful feature. 

It has an enclosed porch with a beautiful curved window.  It's a window from the back of an old railway observation car and was installed by a former owner.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ShanghaiJill on April 02, 2012, 08:28:33 PM
I once looked at a tiny house that had a dirt floor in one of the rooms.  Not the basement, one of the rooms.  How delightfully pioneer, I suppose.

Needless to say, I passed it by.  Years later, someone bought it and fixed it up.   They rented it out for an obscene amount of money.

Speaking of renting.  In that same town there was a house that was always in the "for rent" ads.  No matter when you looked at the classifieds, there it was.  Year in and year out.  Twenty years later, i recall it was on 35th street.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elfmama on April 05, 2012, 04:08:13 PM
Was it haunted?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Isometric on May 22, 2012, 01:44:26 AM
This wasn't a feature of the house, but still weird. When we were househunting for our first home, we came across a pair of men's underwear in the bathroom basin. And a semi lewd large framed poster. He was a renter, not the owner, so I guess he didn't want to move.

He also refused to allow the air con to be turned on, despite it being 40 degrees C (104F). I guess he is paying for the electricity, but it seemed a little mean. We actually bought the house and did the negotiating with our faces dripping with sweat.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: scotcat60 on May 22, 2012, 11:06:07 AM
Re the nearness to cemetary posts. I read an article by a woman about all the tied cottages she and her farm worker husband had live in, and the hall way of one was paved with stone, one of which was an old headstone. Another cottage had an iron bar going form one side of the room to the other, fixed into the walls. they amnaged to get a bed beneath it. the bar was useful when her husband had back trouble, and he gripped it to get up out of bed.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kitty_ev on June 04, 2012, 08:23:02 PM
We're househunting at the moment and have seen some rather odd houses while browsing the internet. Most of the housing stock in our city in our price range is 1920s-1930s semi-detached housing built before downstairs toilets and kitchens large enough to swing a cat were considered necessary. In addition, most of the houses here had an upstairs toilet (no sink, just the toilet) in a separate room to the bath/shower and sink. Few had a garage originally, but many now have one. It's quite interesting seeing how people have modernised things.

One of them had managed to create 6 bedrooms, but had no downstairs toilet and only one tiny upstairs bathroom. 6>:1 person:toilet ratio didn't sound too good to us.

Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!

One place had a bright red carpet along with zebra print walls and rug. It looked like someone had been experimenting with room decor in the Sims.

Another owner had more cushions that I have ever seen in one place in their living room. They had a large sort of sofa that extended out about twice as far as a normal sofa. It was covered in cushions. Black sofa, bright lime/slime green cushions. It was quite striking.

Another looked good. We looked at all the pictures and were favourably impressed until one caught our eye. The house was clearly inhabited by a family with multiple teenagers. Clearly bathroom space was an issue. Their solution? They installed a shower cubicle and toilet in the corner of the master bedroom! Not behind a screen or anything, just there next to the window in the room!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kkl123 on June 04, 2012, 08:35:32 PM
The strangest house I was in while property hunting had a couple of strange things going on... it was an old hunting cabin that someone had decided to partition into a bedroom and living room arrangement.  The hall they made was 24" wide and about 8 ft long, so you had to sidle down the hall to get to the bedroom.  Once there, you'd have to crawl into the double bed from the foot of the bed.  I have no idea how you'd get a mattress back there and installed.  The other issue with the house was a lot more critical -- there was no weatherhead.  The power line fed from the pole through a hole in the house wall and directly to the circuit breaker box, which was covered in gypsum dust as the power line wallowed out a bigger hole in the wind -- it was about 8" in diameter when I saw it.

As we were looking for property with a "habitable for a couple of years but basically tear down worthy" house on it, I could have lived with the first problem (a couple of hours with a sledge hammer and crowbar would have taken that wall back out), but that electrical system was just plain tooooooo much.

The house is still there... has a "condemned" sign on it now, which somehow doesn't surprise me.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: WestAussieGirl on June 05, 2012, 07:19:18 AM
In addition, most of the houses here had an upstairs toilet (no sink, just the toilet) in a separate room to the bath/shower and sink.

That's a standard arrangement here in West Oz.  Ensuites usually have the toilet in the same room as the shower etc but the family bathroom usually has the toilet in a separate room. You then go into the bathroom to wash your hands.

That's why when Americans say they are going to the bathroom it confuses us.  You won't find a toilet in there.   :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #borecore on June 05, 2012, 10:02:54 AM
We're househunting at the moment and have seen some rather odd houses while browsing the internet. Most of the housing stock in our city in our price range is 1920s-1930s semi-detached housing built before downstairs toilets and kitchens large enough to swing a cat were considered necessary. In addition, most of the houses here had an upstairs toilet (no sink, just the toilet) in a separate room to the bath/shower and sink. Few had a garage originally, but many now have one. It's quite interesting seeing how people have modernised things.

One of them had managed to create 6 bedrooms, but had no downstairs toilet and only one tiny upstairs bathroom. 6>:1 person:toilet ratio didn't sound too good to us.

Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!

One place had a bright red carpet along with zebra print walls and rug. It looked like someone had been experimenting with room decor in the Sims.

Another owner had more cushions that I have ever seen in one place in their living room. They had a large sort of sofa that extended out about twice as far as a normal sofa. It was covered in cushions. Black sofa, bright lime/slime green cushions. It was quite striking.

Another looked good. We looked at all the pictures and were favourably impressed until one caught our eye. The house was clearly inhabited by a family with multiple teenagers. Clearly bathroom space was an issue. Their solution? They installed a shower cubicle and toilet in the corner of the master bedroom! Not behind a screen or anything, just there next to the window in the room!

I don't understand why a bathroom near a kitchen is gross. Almost every house in my neighborhood growing up had an open downstairs plan (kitchen, dining room and several living spaces without doors between them) with the only enclosed room being the bathroom -- so it was 'off the kitchen' because everything was 'off' everything else.
People cooking or serving food need to go the bathroom just like anyone else.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on June 05, 2012, 04:47:57 PM
Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!


That is what happened when old houses had plumbing installed and the pantry was made into the bathroom.

Bathroom noises, even through a closed door, are Ewww! when we are eating or preparing a meal.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on June 05, 2012, 05:14:03 PM
I always told DH that if I ever lived in Tornado Alley again, I was going to have a tornado-cellar if I had to go out in the back yard and dig one with a teaspoon!

And where have I come the nearest to a tornado?  Right here in Maryland, which is nowhere near Tornado Alley!  An F-1 about 15 years ago came through my back yard.  Minor damage, mostly to the neighbor's trees, which got their tops twisted off and thrown in my yard.  It also sucked the glass out of a storm window that was already cracked, and tore off the top of the bird feeder and filled just one of the two compartments with dirt.

I know this is a pretty old post, but any home I ever have a hand in building, anywhere in the world will have a storm shelter in it. Poured concrete floor, concrete walls, steel frame and door with a separate ventilation system. My parents house has no rooms that are windowless. My current town house is the same. I have lived through 6 major hurricanes, two tornadoes, and I never want to huddle in a bathroom during a storm again.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on June 05, 2012, 05:24:14 PM

I know this is a pretty old post, but any home I ever have a hand in building, anywhere in the world will have a storm shelter in it. Poured concrete floor, concrete walls, steel frame and door with a separate ventilation system.

Plus you can store food and weapons in it in case of the Zombie Apocalypse.   ;)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: AustenFan on June 05, 2012, 05:29:51 PM
I love this thread and appreciate that it's been brought up again. Unfortunately I'm from an area where age+character =/= value, so have nothing to contribute. The closest thing we get to a "weird" feature is a dedicated wine cellar.  :-\
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on June 05, 2012, 05:43:41 PM
I have a few.

I live in central Florida, which has felt the housing bust quite strongly.
In a very nice area of town, an estate was selling the house of the person recently deceased. These houses were built between 1979 - 1981 and were rather unusual in design. You open the front door to see a very steep staircase leading up to the main level of the house. So you had to climb 15 stairs just after opening the door. Then you had the living room, dining area, and kitchen along with doors leading to a balcony looking over the backyard. On the left, from the top of the stairs, you could see another staircase on the left leading to the bedrooms and bathrooms. There was a large sub-level off the garage, like a basement, but not underground. Now, this house had the exact same furnishings from the day it was completed, including avocado green deep shag carpeting and tie-dye wallpaper. This wouldn't have been a problem, just a bit dated, if the carpet had been cleaned regularly. That was not the case here, the carpet had not been vacuumed in years. The floor was inches deep in flotsam and the house reeked of cats.

My family is vacationing together in the fall. We are looking to rent a home or cabin for a week. We will have 8 people in total. I can not believe the number of homes who advertise as suitable for 8+ people that only have one bathroom! We will have four men and four women, so one bathroom is a no-go.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on June 05, 2012, 05:46:01 PM

I know this is a pretty old post, but any home I ever have a hand in building, anywhere in the world will have a storm shelter in it. Poured concrete floor, concrete walls, steel frame and door with a separate ventilation system.

Plus you can store food and weapons in it in case of the Zombie Apocalypse.   ;)

A few too many episodes of "American Preppers" have made me think a bit like that. Also, the alcohol stockpiling for use of medicine, fuel and bartering!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on June 05, 2012, 07:01:31 PM
The closest thing we get to a "weird" feature is a dedicated wine cellar.  :-\

Wonderful!  How can you go wrong with that?

If there's a tornado, hurricane, or other major event, you have a safe windowless place to hide out. 

And -- If the end of the world comes, you can at least get drunk so you leave this place "happy".   ;D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on June 05, 2012, 09:25:13 PM

You'd be suprised at what is in houses that you would never expect!  Our house is only 8 years old, but it has a "Narnia".  They accidently dug out an extra 300 square feet of the daylight basement when they were building this "tract" house.  So they had to finish it as room inside a closet.  Go down into the daylight basement (2nd floor leading out to the back yard).  Go to the bedroom at the end of the hall.  Open the closet door.  Go through the door inside the closet.  300 square foot room.  No windows, 2 cement walls and (currently)a cement floor.  Yes, I am thinking of painting trees on the walls, why do you ask?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on June 05, 2012, 09:31:57 PM

You'd be suprised at what is in houses that you would never expect!  Our house is only 8 years old, but it has a "Narnia".  They accidently dug out an extra 300 square feet of the daylight basement when they were building this "tract" house.  So they had to finish it as room inside a closet.  Go down into the daylight basement (2nd floor leading out to the back yard).  Go to the bedroom at the end of the hall.  Open the closet door.  Go through the door inside the closet.  300 square foot room.  No windows, 2 cement walls and (currently)a cement floor.  Yes, I am thinking of painting trees on the walls, why do you ask?


That would be so freaking COOL.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: AustenFan on June 05, 2012, 10:36:04 PM
The closest thing we get to a "weird" feature is a dedicated wine cellar.  :-\

Wonderful!  How can you go wrong with that?

If there's a tornado, hurricane, or other major event, you have a safe windowless place to hide out. 

And -- If the end of the world comes, you can at least get drunk so you leave this place "happy".   ;D

By George, I've been missing out on the true value of a wine cellar! We haven't had anything worse than hail, but I can pretend to be scared and drink!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on June 06, 2012, 01:20:49 PM

You'd be suprised at what is in houses that you would never expect!  Our house is only 8 years old, but it has a "Narnia".  They accidently dug out an extra 300 square feet of the daylight basement when they were building this "tract" house.  So they had to finish it as room inside a closet.  Go down into the daylight basement (2nd floor leading out to the back yard).  Go to the bedroom at the end of the hall.  Open the closet door.  Go through the door inside the closet.  300 square foot room.  No windows, 2 cement walls and (currently)a cement floor.  Yes, I am thinking of painting trees on the walls, why do you ask?


That would be so freaking COOL.

Extremely! Where are you and can I talk you into selling? :-)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kitty_ev on June 06, 2012, 04:33:20 PM
Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!


That is what happened when old houses had plumbing installed and the pantry was made into the bathroom.

Bathroom noises, even through a closed door, are Ewww! when we are eating or preparing a meal.

Oh, I'm fully aware of WHY there are toilets coming off the kitchen. It's just not hygienic. That's when building regulations now state that any new build houses or houses being remodelled need at least 2 closing doors between a toilet and the kitchen. It's not just the noises, it's the other associated bathroom... um.... atmosphere. Just not something you want nearby when you're cooking. Ever.

I'm also decidedly not keen on any toilet without a sink in the same room. Too much opportunity to spread bacteria around on door handles going from one room to the other to wash the hands. I seen far too much gastroenteritis at work and caught it often enough to be really pernickity about hand hygiene these days.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Luci on June 07, 2012, 04:48:18 PM
Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!


That is what happened when old houses had plumbing installed and the pantry was made into the bathroom.

Bathroom noises, even through a closed door, are Ewww! when we are eating or preparing a meal.

Oh, I'm fully aware of WHY there are toilets coming off the kitchen. It's just not hygienic. That's when building regulations now state that any new build houses or houses being remodelled need at least 2 closing doors between a toilet and the kitchen. It's not just the noises, it's the other associated bathroom... um.... atmosphere. Just not something you want nearby when you're cooking. Ever.


Only rarely have I seen a home with 2 closing doors between the kitchen and toilet. Even the most expensive house in the family has a huge dining room off the kitchen, a large foyer, than the powder room, which has the onlly closing door.

Our home has a kitchen, the small entryway for the front door, then the door to the bath is about 8 feet down a hallway; again, that's the only closing door. We have no issues with that.

I can only think of one home I've been in that had 2 closing doors, and the kitchen door was so in the way it was never closed and even may have been removed.


Where are you?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #borecore on June 07, 2012, 05:12:23 PM
Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!


That is what happened when old houses had plumbing installed and the pantry was made into the bathroom.

Bathroom noises, even through a closed door, are Ewww! when we are eating or preparing a meal.

Oh, I'm fully aware of WHY there are toilets coming off the kitchen. It's just not hygienic. That's when building regulations now state that any new build houses or houses being remodelled need at least 2 closing doors between a toilet and the kitchen. It's not just the noises, it's the other associated bathroom... um.... atmosphere. Just not something you want nearby when you're cooking. Ever.


Only rarely have I seen a home with 2 closing doors between the kitchen and toilet. Even the most expensive house in the family has a huge dining room off the kitchen, a large foyer, than the powder room, which has the onlly closing door.

Our home has a kitchen, the small entryway for the front door, then the door to the bath is about 8 feet down a hallway; again, that's the only closing door. We have no issues with that.

I can only think of one home I've been in that had 2 closing doors, and the kitchen door was so in the way it was never closed and even may have been removed.


Where are you?

Agreed. I know I was the one who posted earlier that every house in the neighborhood I grew up in had bathrooms 'off' the kitchen, but I honestly can't think of more than one or two homes I've been in that had more than one door between the kitchen and the nearest bathroom.

As far as I know, this hasn't meant these areas have greater instances of food poisoning!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: twiggy on June 07, 2012, 05:35:33 PM
hmmm, technically there are 2 doors between my upstairs toilet and the bathroom. But that's because in the bathroom there is the door to the outside, and a door between the sink/counter/mirror and the shower/toilet area. Although, now that I think about it, the toilet is on one side of the wall, and I believe the stove is on the other side of that same wall. But to get a person from one area to the other, you have to walk through the kitchen, through the living room, into the hall, and to the bathroom.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Vall on June 08, 2012, 03:44:39 PM
Our house is almost 100 years old and we have two closing doors between the kitchen and bathroom.  We have a door that separates the living areas from the hallway leading to the sleeping areas, which is where the only bathroom is.  We seldom close the hallway door though---we just close the bathroom door.

I've been mentally walking through all of the houses of our friends and family and houses we've lived in.  These houses are from different states in the US and are all different ages.  So far, I can't think of any that have two closing doors between the kitchen and bathroom, other than our current house.

I'm curious what country or region regulates that there be two closing doors.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on June 08, 2012, 07:11:49 PM
^^ It's not where I am.  My bathroom's right off the kitchen.  I think it'd be more of an issue if there were NO doors between the bathroom and the kitchen, but that makes no sense, since it's typical (I would think) to shut the bathroom door when you're using it.  It might be an issue I guess if I left my bathroom door hanging open, but who does that?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Outdoor Girl on June 08, 2012, 07:15:34 PM
It might be an issue I guess if I left my bathroom door hanging open, but who does that?

Ummmm... I do.  I live alone.  If I close the door, the cats cry outside and drive me bonkers.  I do close the door when people are over.

My upper floor is open concept with the kitchen at the back and the living room at the front.  The bathroom goes off the living room.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: GreenEyedHawk on June 08, 2012, 07:45:31 PM
Sorry, OG, I meant if the bathroom's right off the kitchen.  That'd feel a little too "public" for me.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on June 09, 2012, 12:07:12 AM
It might be an issue I guess if I left my bathroom door hanging open, but who does that?

Ummmm... I do.  I live alone.  If I close the door, the cats cry outside and drive me bonkers.  I do close the door when people are over.

To say nothing of my codependent dog... or the fact that the critters can open the door when I do close it...

My house only has 1 closing door between the bathroom and the kitchen, but there's a hallway and a living room between them (and one potentially-closing door), so I'd consider that at least equivalent. Stuff doesn't fly THAT far out of the throne.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on June 09, 2012, 08:50:47 AM
Going on the assumption that my house is weird  ;), I've been mentally counting doors to bathrooms in friends' and relatives' houses.  The only ones with two doors between the bath and the rest of the house are baths in a master suite.*  On the other hand, none of them have a powder room opening directly into the kitchen either; it is usually around the corner off a hallway.  It's more economical to add plumbing to a place that already has plumbing, so I can see why a powder room would be located near a kitchen.  That's where the water is.


*Except for my house.  My master bath doesn't have  a door.  You can't see anything because of a glass block wall dividing it from a bit of hallway leading to the bedroom/study area, but it has crossed my mind that it is a good thing that I don't share it with anyone.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kitty_ev on June 11, 2012, 06:21:55 PM
Several had a downstairs toilet.... but the room for it came directly off the kitchen. Eeeew!


That is what happened when old houses had plumbing installed and the pantry was made into the bathroom.

Bathroom noises, even through a closed door, are Ewww! when we are eating or preparing a meal.

Oh, I'm fully aware of WHY there are toilets coming off the kitchen. It's just not hygienic. That's when building regulations now state that any new build houses or houses being remodelled need at least 2 closing doors between a toilet and the kitchen. It's not just the noises, it's the other associated bathroom... um.... atmosphere. Just not something you want nearby when you're cooking. Ever.


Only rarely have I seen a home with 2 closing doors between the kitchen and toilet. Even the most expensive house in the family has a huge dining room off the kitchen, a large foyer, than the powder room, which has the onlly closing door.

Our home has a kitchen, the small entryway for the front door, then the door to the bath is about 8 feet down a hallway; again, that's the only closing door. We have no issues with that.

I can only think of one home I've been in that had 2 closing doors, and the kitchen door was so in the way it was never closed and even may have been removed.


Where are you?

UK. It's one of the housing regulations here, so all new build houses and homes that are having interior renovations that are installing a downstairs toilet have to follow these regulations. Most of the older houses have had their interiors redone since these new regulations came in, so they have to abide by the new rules. The newer houses were designed with these building regs in mind anyway.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: emwithme on June 13, 2012, 03:48:20 AM
Not any more - it's been changed this year.  For a long time it was two doors, but now it's just one.

IM(H)O, as long as the bathroom has a window that opens, or a good extractor fan, then there's no problem with only a single door. 

Many years ago, I was looking round rental properties with my (then) fiance.  We went to one property, looked round, noticed that there was only a toilet and sink in the (downstairs) "bathroom" and presumed that there would be another bathroom with a bath/shower upstairs.  But no.  All that was upstairs were the two bedrooms.

We asked the letting agent and she said "oh..." and lifted up what we thought was the (sole) kitchen work surface.  Underneath was a bath!  The top of the bath was at the right height for a worksurface, and the bottom of the bath was half way between the floor and the work surface height (If that makes sense!).  You'd have to use a step to get into the bath, and would then be sitting in the kitchen with your head at normal standing height, when you're sitting in the bath.

Oh. No...
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: ladyknight1 on June 13, 2012, 08:32:38 AM
Not any more - it's been changed this year.  For a long time it was two doors, but now it's just one.

IM(H)O, as long as the bathroom has a window that opens, or a good extractor fan, then there's no problem with only a single door. 

Many years ago, I was looking round rental properties with my (then) fiance.  We went to one property, looked round, noticed that there was only a toilet and sink in the (downstairs) "bathroom" and presumed that there would be another bathroom with a bath/shower upstairs.  But no.  All that was upstairs were the two bedrooms.

We asked the letting agent and she said "oh..." and lifted up what we thought was the (sole) kitchen work surface.  Underneath was a bath!  The top of the bath was at the right height for a worksurface, and the bottom of the bath was half way between the floor and the work surface height (If that makes sense!).  You'd have to use a step to get into the bath, and would then be sitting in the kitchen with your head at normal standing height, when you're sitting in the bath.

Oh. No...

That is just bizarre, but I know bath tubs were often in the kitchen in the days before hot running water and central heating. The kitchen was warmer and the water could be heated right there.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RebeccainGA on June 13, 2012, 09:20:25 AM
Our new home has one weirdness - the whole thing is PURPLE. It's a mobile home, and apparently this was a factory installed thing - purple carpets, purple trim, wallpaper with purple fans, living room trim with purple deco arches - it's purple everywhere you look.

One weirdness in our current home (other than the duct work that stops at the living room, leaving the dining room and den un-heated and un-air-conditioned, is the second front door. It's in the carport, and leads into the den. It's literally 10 feet from the front door. Why???? We also have our washer by our bedroom, and the dryer in the den - but that's sadly due to plumbing (there's no gas service to the back half of the house, and no water to the front). Just love hauling wet clothes across the entire length of the house.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on June 13, 2012, 10:48:50 AM
For years, my clothes washer was on one end of the basement, and the dryer was on the other.  When the house was built in the 1950's, the washer was placed under the kitchen, where the plumbing and a door to the backyard clothesline was located.  When a new-fangled electric dryer was purchased several years later, it was located next to the fuse box, rather than run a dedicated line all the way over to the washer area.

Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kaora on June 16, 2012, 04:47:59 PM
Odd feature, spotted from a friend's house.

They have a house which the original owner himself built.  Let's say there was lots of electrical code violations until a few months ago, when they were remodelling it.  Apparently, the owner bought wire on what was on sale that week. :o

Same house also has this weird little structure in the rather large backyard.  It looks like the house, but its separate.  It has two, teeny, tiny, rectangular rooms separated by a single, temporary plywood board, and looks like it could have been a toolshed, if not for the pet-shaped hole at the bottom of it.  It has a wall that is pretty much one giant, flat-topped arch, a door to the left of that wall (same wall with the door is the one with the pet shaped hole), and a window on the other side.  Very, very weird.

Also, another only one closing door between us and a toilet.  The floorplan is very open on the front.  You come in through the door, to the immediate left is our now dining room (formerly a family room), straight ahead is the hallway to the two bedrooms and one master (with bath), and one common bathroom.  On the right is the front of the house, which segues first into the kitchen (on the opposite of the kitchen was our former dining room, now holds an island), and then into the living room.  The living room might be an oddity to the rest of our housing tract; it's much larger.  Dad designed it according to the golden ratio for sound, so it's around 20x15 feet, length and width, (exact numbers escape me now) but the builders forgot to extend the back porch, so it's teeny tiny. :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: alegria on June 18, 2012, 10:16:49 AM
Same house also has this weird little structure in the rather large backyard.  It looks like the house, but its separate.  It has two, teeny, tiny, rectangular rooms separated by a single, temporary plywood board, and looks like it could have been a toolshed, if not for the pet-shaped hole at the bottom of it.  It has a wall that is pretty much one giant, flat-topped arch, a door to the left of that wall (same wall with the door is the one with the pet shaped hole), and a window on the other side.  Very, very weird.

Could it be a garden shed which was split to make part of it a dog house?  We had a preexisting shed in the space that we turned into a kennel, so we built a wall inside it and put in a dog door so about 40% of the space is for the dogs, and the remaining 60% or so is for the lawnmower and other shed-like things.  Lots of airspace, it's weathertight, and big enough for all three of the border collies, it works perfectly for our purposes.  :)  I actually just cleaned it out this weekend and put a fresh batch of straw inside, which they use for bedding that won't get destroyed by tugging/playing or by them tracking water inside when it rains.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kaora on June 18, 2012, 02:13:39 PM
Same house also has this weird little structure in the rather large backyard.  It looks like the house, but its separate.  It has two, teeny, tiny, rectangular rooms separated by a single, temporary plywood board, and looks like it could have been a toolshed, if not for the pet-shaped hole at the bottom of it.  It has a wall that is pretty much one giant, flat-topped arch, a door to the left of that wall (same wall with the door is the one with the pet shaped hole), and a window on the other side.  Very, very weird.

Could it be a garden shed which was split to make part of it a dog house?  We had a preexisting shed in the space that we turned into a kennel, so we built a wall inside it and put in a dog door so about 40% of the space is for the dogs, and the remaining 60% or so is for the lawnmower and other shed-like things.  Lots of airspace, it's weathertight, and big enough for all three of the border collies, it works perfectly for our purposes.  :)  I actually just cleaned it out this weekend and put a fresh batch of straw inside, which they use for bedding that won't get destroyed by tugging/playing or by them tracking water inside when it rains.

I never thought of that.  Could be, considering I couldn't figure out why someone would want to put a pet door in a toolshed in the first place.  I'd be afraid stuff inside the shed could hurt the critters, but a split building would make more sense.  Maybe I can bring this up to BF next time I talk to him.  Thanks.  :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on March 26, 2013, 10:20:37 AM
Resurrecting this thread because I love it.

DH and I have started thinking about buying a larger house in the next year or so and have started looking online at different areas and neighborhoods to narrow it down before the real hunt begins. One house really stood out. 11 bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, two kitchens (the top floor has an apartment set up). It's almost 8,000 square feet on about 1/2 an acre. We had fun thinking of all we could do with that kind of space at the listed price and then read on. It also has a beauty salon in the basement and there is a church on the property that is included in the sales price, as well as the 12 parking spaces belonging to the church. I kind of wanted to go check it out until I discovered that the neighborhood is not the greatest.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: gramma dishes on March 26, 2013, 10:45:12 AM
^^^  Sounds intriguing!

It also sounds like the "house" is a neighborhood unto itself!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ms_Cellany on March 26, 2013, 12:24:10 PM
When we were house shopping, I really hoped for either a decommissioned firehouse or a deconsecrated church. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on March 26, 2013, 02:45:53 PM
I would LOVE that!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: faithlessone on March 26, 2013, 02:55:40 PM
When we were house shopping, I really hoped for either a decommissioned firehouse or a deconsecrated church. 

A house in the village next to mine is a deconsecrated church. It's an absolutely beautiful building, and I heard that the developers did an amazing job converting it into a lovely 2 bedroom house. Apparently there was quite the bidding war on it when it sold, because it made more than 4 times what was expected of it!!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Where's the Quiet? on March 26, 2013, 03:07:55 PM
^^^  Sounds intriguing!

It also sounds like the "house" is a neighborhood unto itself!!

It really is! There's also an activity room and workshop in the basement. Apparently it was previously used as a personal care home. The listing says the church building bears no value so it must be in pretty sad shape. They didn't even show any pictures of it.

When we were house shopping, I really hoped for either a decommissioned firehouse or a deconsecrated church. 

I have a five year old son who would LOVE to live in a firehouse! That sounds really neat.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Hillia on March 26, 2013, 03:18:24 PM
I have a five year old son who would LOVE to live in a firehouse! That sounds really neat.

I once looked at an old firehouse that had been converted into a residential rental.  Well, sort of converted...the bathroom still had a 3 stall, 2 urinal setup.  Would have been handy for parties, I suppose.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on March 26, 2013, 06:42:36 PM
Where do you find listings for old churches and firehouses for sale?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Shoo on March 27, 2013, 04:41:23 PM
We looked at a house that was very nice.  Problem was, it was directly underneath some very gigantic and ominous looking powerlines.  We called it the Brain Cancer House.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Bluenomi on March 27, 2013, 06:30:25 PM
In addition, most of the houses here had an upstairs toilet (no sink, just the toilet) in a separate room to the bath/shower and sink.

That's a standard arrangement here in West Oz.  Ensuites usually have the toilet in the same room as the shower etc but the family bathroom usually has the toilet in a separate room. You then go into the bathroom to wash your hands.

That's why when Americans say they are going to the bathroom it confuses us.  You won't find a toilet in there.   :)

I think that is pretty standard in most of Oz. We refused to buy a house that had the loo in the bathroom, it's more convient seperate when you've only got one bathroom, it means you can use it while someone else is in the shower. we didn't see many, mostly they we houses with bad bathroon renos.

We keep thinking about upgrading our loo to one with the sink in the cistern so you don't need to use the bathroom or kitchen sink to wash your hands.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: OSUJillyBean on April 30, 2013, 10:09:37 AM
1.  When we were looking to buy our first house, I had a habit of checking inside of cabinets, appliances, etc.  I was surprised once to find a whole load of dirty dishes inside the stove where the family had stashed them!  I think it was to make the sink look cleaner and really, who look sin the oven (besides weirdos like me?).  We didn't hold it against them though, although it was pretty funny.

2.  One of the weirdest things I've seen while looking for college housing (off-campus) was a jacuzzi tub in the master bedroom that had FULL SHAG CARPET ON THE FLOORS AND OUTSIDE WALLS OF THE TUB.  That house was the moldiest, nastiest property we looked at and I was so glad we found someplace clean to live!!!


3.  ETA this:  http://d24w6bsrhbeh9d.cloudfront.net/photo/a8LZZr1_460s.jpg
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RebeccainGA on April 30, 2013, 11:38:00 AM
2.  One of the weirdest things I've seen while looking for college housing (off-campus) was a jacuzzi tub in the master bedroom that had FULL SHAG CARPET ON THE FLOORS AND OUTSIDE WALLS OF THE TUB.  That house was the moldiest, nastiest property we looked at and I was so glad we found someplace clean to live!!!

We found one of those, too. Who does that???
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: OSUJillyBean on May 02, 2013, 09:26:25 AM
2.  One of the weirdest things I've seen while looking for college housing (off-campus) was a jacuzzi tub in the master bedroom that had FULL SHAG CARPET ON THE FLOORS AND OUTSIDE WALLS OF THE TUB.  That house was the moldiest, nastiest property we looked at and I was so glad we found someplace clean to live!!!

We found one of those, too. Who does that???

It looked like a 1970s studio for adult films that had been hastily turned into really icky student apartments.  Carpet in the bathroom is a terrible idea.  Lime-green shag carpet with what appeared to be an active mold colony growing in it made my skin crawl.  The house was huge and very cheap rent.  Now I know why!  Yikes!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Mel the Redcap on May 05, 2013, 12:02:32 AM
The house the Good Ethnic Boy and I bought after our wedding was listed as "4-5 bedrooms" - the main bedroom, two small children's bedrooms, a long thin room we've converted into a film/TV/game room, and a teeny-tiny room that used to be a small wardrobe-less bedroom, lost its window and a chunk of space when an addition was built on, and is now a storage space that I'm slowly converting into a library.

The weird features (apart from the odd shape of the long thin room) are the security shutters on the windows of the two children's bedrooms (surprising, given that no other rooms had them, the front security door was long broken, and the back fence was a low wooden picket fence in horrible condition that I was able to kick down when we replaced it), and the wallpaper borders at the top of the walls in the same rooms. Originally we were planning that I would have the slightly smaller one and the Good Ethnic Boy would take the one that had better storage space for his comic collection... then he looked up, and discovered that the smaller room had a dinosaur border, but the larger one had fairies. Pink fairies. His masculinity revolted, and I got the bigger room. >:D
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Mel the Redcap on May 05, 2013, 06:12:57 AM
Ooh, and how could I forget this one?

When the Good Ethnic Boy and I were house-hunting, we were looking at some that were in an area with a lot of small, fairly steep hills. One in particular was built on the downhill side of the road, and the ground had been dug out to accommodate a two-storey house. The ground floor was sunk into the hill, with about a six-foot gap between the front of the house and the (walled-up) earth, so those rooms got at least some natural light; the rear of the house was clear; and you entered the house via a bridge over the 'moat' that connected to the centre of the top floor. We made jokes about installing a drawbridge and pulling it up to protect you from visiting relatives. >:D

That house was really awesome but unfortunately we couldn't afford the area. Poot. :P
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: menley on May 06, 2013, 04:38:39 AM
Our house also has a missing window from the inside! We never noticed when we bought it, but I accidentally locked my husband out of the house one day and he was going around peeking in all the windows (so he could figure out which room I was in and knock on the window). I was in the master bathroom and all of a sudden heard loud knocking behind our large rectangular bathroom mirror... and a voice saying "LET ME IN!" 

I just about passed out, because we'd found out shortly before closing on the house that the previous owner had committed suicide.

Then I recognized that it was my husband's voice and tried to figure out where on earth it was coming from... apparently when the master bath had been renovated, they decided they didn't want a window in there. Rather than actually close it off, they just drywalled and hung a mirror over it. So from the outside, we have a window (that still has blinds!) to nowhere.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Belle on May 11, 2013, 06:44:18 AM
Our house also has a missing window from the inside!


Oh my goodness - that makes at least three of us with windows to nowhere! (And makes me feel slightly better for not having noticed our windows to nowhere before buying the house.)

The previous owner of our house did many of the renovations himself (which, of course, we had to redo most of because watching a few "Flip This House" type shows does not make you a professional). Rather than remove the windows in rooms where he did major renovations, he walled over them from the inside, but not the outside. We had five - FIVE! - windows that were covered by drywall on the inside but were still visible from the outside of the house. And nobody noticed - not me, my husband, our realtor, our home inspector - until we had been living there for six months.

In our defense, none of the windows were very noticeable from the outside. They were all on the second floor (so you couldn't see that they were covered by a wall unless you got on a ladder), and they were on the sides facing our neighbors. We live in a neighborhood where the homes are very close together, so two sides of our house are rarely seen unless you decide to stand in the gap between the houses to stare at the house. Several windows had to be replaced (damaged, leaking), but we couldn't actually replace them because, you know, wall on the inside, so we had to repair the gaps and reside the entire darn house. (It needed residing anyway, but we weren't planning on doing it for another few years.)

Lesson learned - when you buy a house, count the number of windows on the outside and compare them to the number of windows found inside the house!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #borecore on May 11, 2013, 09:48:34 AM
I lived in a "guest house" with a DOOR to nowhere. It was a small house with one main room and a bathroom, so I don't know why they would have thought it needed two doors on the same side, but it even had steps leading to it. No sign of a door on the other side.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on May 11, 2013, 12:16:21 PM
My paternal grandparents retired from farming and bought an OLDER house in Waco, with two front doors.  One went into the front bedroom (it had a closet) and the other into a combined living & dining room with a fireplace at the living room end.

Looking at the rest of the house - I think that it had things set up for before the invention of air conditioning - the back bedroom and front bedroom were on either side of a bathroom - and the hallway let the air from the covered porch blow through the windows screens through the bedroom at the back of the house onto another covered porch/patio.  The original back porch had been enclosed and turned into a tv room/den. 

The garage was a shed with two rooms - the front was for their car and the back.....I seem to remember being where Grandma kept her gardening tools, including a small hand plow with a huge iron wheel.  She was a serious gardener, canning and freezing the produce from her garden for more than 15 years after Grandpa "retired" (arthritis) - she was about ten or twelve years younger than he was.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Belle on May 13, 2013, 11:32:29 AM
I lived in a "guest house" with a DOOR to nowhere. It was a small house with one main room and a bathroom, so I don't know why they would have thought it needed two doors on the same side, but it even had steps leading to it. No sign of a door on the other side.

A friend also has a door to nowhere, although in his case it's easy to see why the door is there. A portion of the house was renovated, and the door was walled over on one side. The other side they left as a door - if you open it, you see the back of the drywall. I'm not sure why they didn't wall over both sides.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: amylouky on May 13, 2013, 11:57:34 AM
I lived in a "guest house" with a DOOR to nowhere. It was a small house with one main room and a bathroom, so I don't know why they would have thought it needed two doors on the same side, but it even had steps leading to it. No sign of a door on the other side.

A friend also has a door to nowhere, although in his case it's easy to see why the door is there. A portion of the house was renovated, and the door was walled over on one side. The other side they left as a door - if you open it, you see the back of the drywall. I'm not sure why they didn't wall over both sides.

We have a door to nowhere, on the outside of our house. The space behind used to be a storage area that opened to the outside, it was converted into a walkin closet for the master bedroom. I'm guessing they didn't want to mess with it, since it is a brick house, matching would be pretty hard.

As an aside, my lovely dog has decided that chewing up that door (including part of the wood frame) would be a great idea, so I now need to replace it. I'm thinking of just putting plywood over the space, with either siding or building some plant shelves there. Would that be weird?
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: RebeccainGA on May 13, 2013, 12:42:15 PM
I lived in a "guest house" with a DOOR to nowhere. It was a small house with one main room and a bathroom, so I don't know why they would have thought it needed two doors on the same side, but it even had steps leading to it. No sign of a door on the other side.

A friend also has a door to nowhere, although in his case it's easy to see why the door is there. A portion of the house was renovated, and the door was walled over on one side. The other side they left as a door - if you open it, you see the back of the drywall. I'm not sure why they didn't wall over both sides.

We have a door to nowhere, on the outside of our house. The space behind used to be a storage area that opened to the outside, it was converted into a walkin closet for the master bedroom. I'm guessing they didn't want to mess with it, since it is a brick house, matching would be pretty hard.

As an aside, my lovely dog has decided that chewing up that door (including part of the wood frame) would be a great idea, so I now need to replace it. I'm thinking of just putting plywood over the space, with either siding or building some plant shelves there. Would that be weird?

Not at all weird. My parents have a 'window to nowhere' between their dining room and living room (the house had an open breezeway originally - when it was enclosed so that you could walk between the house proper and the garage without going into 90 degree Florida summers, they didn't close up the window, just took the glass out) and theirs has several shelves that are great for decor - visible in two rooms, too high for little ones visiting in the living room, but low enough (because the house is split level) in the kitchen/dining room to be able to dust.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: cwm on May 13, 2013, 12:52:46 PM
The house I grew up in has a fully interior window. The kitchen used to be a breezeway between the house and garage, and the dining room used to be the kitchen. There was a window from the kitchen to the breezeway, and when they updated the kitchen they just left it open. When the kitchen was renovated recently, we set the height of the back of the countertops to the little window so we can still pass things through if we need them, or get easier access to the outlets in the dining room for laptops and the like.

We also have a window in the bathroom that's strictly for decoration. My dad bought a window frame and put a photograph of a river on the other side and mounted it in the bathroom. It looks like there's a nice river outside, but it's actually just a fancy picture frame.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Bexx27 on May 13, 2013, 12:57:36 PM
I lived in a "guest house" with a DOOR to nowhere. It was a small house with one main room and a bathroom, so I don't know why they would have thought it needed two doors on the same side, but it even had steps leading to it. No sign of a door on the other side.

A friend also has a door to nowhere, although in his case it's easy to see why the door is there. A portion of the house was renovated, and the door was walled over on one side. The other side they left as a door - if you open it, you see the back of the drywall. I'm not sure why they didn't wall over both sides.

My parents' house has one of those. The rec room used to be accessed through the dining room, but they walled over that entrance on the rec room side and made a new entrance from the kitchen. It would have cost more to wall over both sides, and having a door to nowhere in the dining room didn't bother them, so they left it. They also added an extra closet to the master bedroom by taking the adjacent bedroom's closet. So one of the spare bedrooms has no closet and an oddly indented wall. At least they removed the door to the now non-existent closet.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Spring Water on Sundays on May 13, 2013, 03:14:35 PM
Old houses are interesting!

I just realized that my house has a window to nowhere as well. It's in the kitchen facing the back yard. I assume it was originally installed for when people were grilling in the backyard, to be able to pass the food through into the kitchen. At some point it got drywalled over inside and now it's the alcove where the fridge sits. You can still see the window from the outside.

I also have an exterior window between my living room and office. When the house was built, the office was a front porch, so that wall was actually the front of the house. A previous owner enclosed the porch to add more living space but left the window. It's charming; I like it. :)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on May 13, 2013, 09:40:17 PM
Mount Vernon - George Washington's home - has a couple of windows to no where.   He put them there on purpose, to make the house look more symmetrical.  The guides point them out during tours.

My previous house had 2 windows, complete with curtains, in the garage.   The garage door was on the side of the house, the windows were on the front of the house.  The house would have looked really weird if that wall didn't have any windows.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kimblee on May 14, 2013, 10:43:09 AM
I lived in a "guest house" with a DOOR to nowhere. It was a small house with one main room and a bathroom, so I don't know why they would have thought it needed two doors on the same side, but it even had steps leading to it. No sign of a door on the other side.

A friend also has a door to nowhere, although in his case it's easy to see why the door is there. A portion of the house was renovated, and the door was walled over on one side. The other side they left as a door - if you open it, you see the back of the drywall. I'm not sure why they didn't wall over both sides.

My aunt's house has a nowhere door... its in her craft room and has about a foot or so of space, then the back of the next room's wall. She has cloth draped all over the walls so you can't see it unless you're shown it.

Once when my cousins (Nine years old and 14 months) were home alone for three days(kinda, they HAD a babysitter but she went with her boyfriend to the lake, leaving the girls alone), A burglar broke a front window and came in. The nine year old got her sister and ran to the craft room, then somehow (no one is sure how) squeezed herself and the baby into that space, turned the lock on the wall side of the door and called the police with a cordless phone.

It took two cops to get them out, once to find the door (with aunt's instructions over the phone, she and my uncle were still out of town.) and another to slip a badge under the door's bottom space. After that my cousin unlocked the door and came out. She was hysterical but the baby had fallen asleep on her shoulder and seemed utterly unbothered by any of it.

My aunt and uncle actually got into a bit of trouble over the whole thing. Thankfully child services believed that they really had hired a babysitter and knew nothing about the girls being alone.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: mandycorn on May 14, 2013, 04:15:50 PM
My grandmother's house has a walled over window. Their bathroom used to be at the back of the house and there was a window in the tub/shower. When my grandfather built the master bedroom onto the back of the house, he left the window in the tub and just added drywall on the (previously) exterior side. I'd imagine it was because there wasn't going to be a way to match the 1950s pink tile and he didn't want to redo the whole tub.

I think the best part is that I only realized the window was there about a year and a half ago, and it's been that way all my life.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Mel the Redcap on May 15, 2013, 03:21:09 AM
Wow, Kimblee! :o I hope they came down like a ton of bricks on that babysitter, and good on your cousin for having the presence of mind to come up with that plan!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Kimblee on May 15, 2013, 03:45:36 PM
Wow, Kimblee! :o I hope they came down like a ton of bricks on that babysitter, and good on your cousin for having the presence of mind to come up with that plan!

I highly doubt she ever got another babysitting gig. It turned into a bit of a fued between her parents and Auntie/Uncle. (Babysitter's mother didn't want to give back the money her daughter had accepted for babysitting.)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: jedikaiti on May 15, 2013, 03:59:27 PM
Wow, Kimblee! :o I hope they came down like a ton of bricks on that babysitter, and good on your cousin for having the presence of mind to come up with that plan!

I highly doubt she ever got another babysitting gig. It turned into a bit of a fued between her parents and Auntie/Uncle. (Babysitter's mother didn't want to give back the money her daughter had accepted for babysitting.)

If that happened today, that babysitter would be lucky to avoid jail time!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: FauxFoodist on May 19, 2013, 12:23:07 PM
A house I lived in for 1 year in grade school.  The upstairs bathroom had 2 doors, one to the master bedroom and 1 to my brothers' bedroom.  To get to that bathroom I had to walk through my brothers' room.

I've seen this at least two times.  I have a friend whose parents' house has a bathroom like this; she called it a "Jack & Jill bathroom."  The bathroom was only accessible either going through her bedroom or her sister's bedroom.  I remember thinking it quite odd.  A year or so later, I went to the home of another college classmate (who my friend also knew) and his house (in a different neighborhood across town) also had a bathroom styled the same way -- only accessible either through his bedroom or his dad's bedroom.

House with an attached garage but no door between the house and garage.

Last year when DH and I were house-hunting, we were shown an annoying house like this.  It was a nice looking house, but I found it quite odd that the garage was attached to the house, yet the only way to get into the garage was either the big garage door or to go into the house, out the door of a bedroom to the opposite side of the house and around to the backyard back to the other side of the house where there was a regular door to the garage.  I said right off it would annoy me to no end to either always have to open the big garage door or make a long journey to get to the back of the house (no door in the back of the house, either) to go into the garage through the regular door.

Also when DH and I were house-hunting, we were shown a house that had a separate building in the backyard that was divided into two rooms that shared a common wall but were each accessible via an outside door.  One room had carpet and a wall painted so it looked like it was a playroom.  The other room had an electrical panel in the back of the room and a concrete floor with a drain in the middle of the room.  It was pretty creepy, and I admitted to maybe having watched too many cop shows because I referred to it as "the killing room."  DH later stated he mentioned the room to a friend who said the house was probably used for growing marijuana (and had been seized as it wasn't a regular sale) and the weird room with the drain was likely for that purpose (the backyard also had a weird amount of concrete poured but didn't look like it was supposed to be a patio and had a drain at one end of the concrete slab -- again, the friend said it sounded like a set-up for a grow operation).

The house we ended up buying has one room painted blood-red with a black accent wall (which we refer to as our "Les Miz" room) and one room painted a muted-purple with a brown accent wall.  They are very ugly, and we question the taste of the previous owners.  There's also a chain-link structure with a roof and a concrete slab that I can only assume is supposed to be a "doghouse" (it had a dog collar hanging from one of the chainlinks).  I can't see housing a dog in that thing when even the tiniest chihuahua would not have sufficient room to run around in it.  I can't wait to have the money to tear it down.  Same with our black "Festivus pole" in the front yard (it is cemented into the ground).  We were puzzled over what it was for for the longest time.  DH deducted that it was probably the pole for a basketball hoop.  I can't wait to get that ugly thing out of our yard also.

ETA:  This reminded me --

I once saw a house with 2 bedrooms with a chain and hook lock on the outside.  (was visiting)  Turns out that they were little kids and the parents didn't want to pay all that money for child gates so they locked their kids in the room.  ???

The "grow house?"  The bedrooms, the bathroom and the pantry door all had hook and eye locks up high (so out of the reach of small children).  I joked that I guess this was to make sure the kids couldn't feed themselves and to lock them in their bedrooms.  Our real estate agent, putting a more "positive" spin on it, said it was probably to keep them from getting into the bedrooms and bathroom, not to keep them from getting out of them (DH was buying the house on his own since this was shortly before we got married so we were really looking at the bottom of the barrel for houses; it made for an "interesting" experience).
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Slartibartfast on May 19, 2013, 01:53:12 PM
I've seen the locks high up on the outside of the bedroom doors - a family I babysat for had two young boys with some fairly severe issues.  The boys would sneak out of their rooms at night and smash things in the playroom and the den, so their parents put up locks to keep the boys in their rooms when they were supposed to be asleep.  It wasn't ideal from a fire safety standpoint, but it was much safer for them overall.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on May 19, 2013, 05:44:58 PM
For a while, one of my relatives had a chain lock on her daughter's door.  The toddler kept raiding the kitchen at night, and would leave the refrigerator door open.  The door opened enough that the child could call out, but not enough for her to slip through.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Elisabunny on May 19, 2013, 05:56:41 PM
We have hooks and eyes on the kids' doors.  Never for nighttime, but just to contain them when they were little and tantrumming.  Also on pantry doors for when they were young enough to just make a mess.  The pantry hooks have also been useful for keeping the dog from nosing the doors open.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Julian on May 20, 2013, 12:05:49 AM
The house I built in Brisbane had a two-way bathroom - one door to the master bedroom, the other went into the laundry.  It was an alternative to a separate ensuite bathroom.

As far as the attached garage with no internal access - the original house plan had no internal access, so I paid extra to have the plan modified to install the internal door.  It was a total lifesaver...  and it was only about $120 at the time (early 90's) so it wasn't expensive.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on May 20, 2013, 01:13:27 AM
This house has an odd bathroom. There's a floor level window in the shower. 

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2013/05/16/greathomesanddestinations/20130516-LOCATION.html?ref=realestate&_r=0#4
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Rohanna on May 20, 2013, 04:04:32 PM
I have(lightweight) door chains on the porch (large old windows without safety latches) off one bedroom, the door to the attic stairs, and the door to the basement stairs- and one bedroom because the door won't shut tight. I have small kids in the house and it's the easiest way to keep them out of places that aren't safe for them. Once you've had a patient or DOA call for a child that's fallen down steep stairs or out a window you often get a little.....cautious.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: kherbert05 on May 20, 2013, 08:08:06 PM
I babysat a family with children who had been adopted after being abused and starved. The children would eat the entire contents of the pantry and refrigerator including the box of baking soda in the frig.


So they had locks on the frig and pantry. The problem was they assumed that I knew how to open the locks, because I was friends with an older daughter. I couldn't make us dinner - so I ended up calling my parents to bring over some food. (I was 11 or 12 so didn't have other options)
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Arrynne on May 21, 2013, 10:58:16 AM
My husband's family rented a home with a grow room.  After they moved in, my husband's mom sent him up to check out the attic.  He opened the attic space and behind it was another door, with a padlock on it!  Once they got that door opened, they found the hoses and light fixtures from a pot growing operation. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: camlan on June 02, 2013, 12:07:44 PM
My aunt and uncle bought a lovely old home built around 1930. It had a garage--part of the basement of the house was the garage. But there was no door between the garage and the rest of the basement.

They had a contractor come to add a door between the garage and basement, only to find out that the floors of the garage and basement were at different levels--the house was built on a hill. Because you would have to step up from the basement to the garage, a door there wouldn't meet the building code. Apparently, you could step down from the basement to the garage, but a step up was a fire hazard.

So for the 30+ years they lived there, Aunt would pull up the car at the front door to unload groceries, and then pull the car around to the back to put it in the garage.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: magicdomino on June 02, 2013, 03:15:05 PM


They had a contractor come to add a door between the garage and basement, only to find out that the floors of the garage and basement were at different levels--the house was built on a hill. Because you would have to step up from the basement to the garage, a door there wouldn't meet the building code. Apparently, you could step down from the basement to the garage, but a step up was a fire hazard.



I guess that makes some sense.  You wouldn't want spilled gasoline or motor oil trickling down into the basement.  Granted, you wouldn't want it in the garage either, but at least it wouldn't spread.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: VorFemme on June 04, 2013, 10:22:42 PM
House that had been rented out for a few years prior to going up for sale - needed renovation.

To the point that the floor in one corner (bathroom) felt very odd when you walked on it (you could feel it sag and rebound as you stepped onto a sound part) and you could see visible mold/mildew in one corner (by tub enclosure).  It was obvious to ME - apparently my allergies to mold & mildew make me hyper-aware of what the stuff looks like....even after it has been painted over.....

How the real estate agency missed it before starting to show it, I do not know.

It had a very "interesting" layout, as well, originally had no access from the house directly to the back yard.  The kitchen let out into the carport, where you had to go around a storage area at the back to get to the back yard.

Someone, at some point, had cut a door in one bedroom into the back yard - but I don't remember there being a closet in that room any more....which meant that it was no longer a bedroom.....and there were other quirks, too - but the spongy/bouncing floor with the mold up one corner by the tiled tub enclosure got to me..............
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on July 31, 2013, 11:30:14 PM
Spotted a very colorful  ;) home online recently. Is it just me, or does this bathroom door frame look kind of low ?

http://gimagesr.gabriels.net/reno/imagereader.aspx?IDClient=180&IDListing=180-l-874-4457222&H=510&W=680&ImageURL=http%3A//m.sothebysrealty.com/4i6/6m65wjnsavwdmv20g0cvm0kmz5i6&Option=N

http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-874-4457222/urban-masterpiece-san-antonio-tx-78204?utm_source=NYTimes&utm_medium=Banner&utm_campaign=Slideshow
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: blue2000 on July 31, 2013, 11:44:26 PM
Spotted a very colorful  ;) home online recently. Is it just me, or does this bathroom door frame look kind of low ?

http://gimagesr.gabriels.net/reno/imagereader.aspx?IDClient=180&IDListing=180-l-874-4457222&H=510&W=680&ImageURL=http%3A//m.sothebysrealty.com/4i6/6m65wjnsavwdmv20g0cvm0kmz5i6&Option=N

http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-874-4457222/urban-masterpiece-san-antonio-tx-78204?utm_source=NYTimes&utm_medium=Banner&utm_campaign=Slideshow

I love that house!

I think the door is regular height. It just looks small because all the other doors/ceilings/furniture are so much larger.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Julian on August 01, 2013, 12:24:12 AM
Wow, that's something!  It reminds me of those Hidden Object games.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Redwing on August 01, 2013, 09:38:27 AM
Wow, that's something!  It reminds me of those Hidden Object games.

I agree.  Those pictures look like drawings.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Coralreef on August 01, 2013, 10:32:24 AM
Spotted a very colorful  ;) home online recently. Is it just me, or does this bathroom door frame look kind of low ?

http://gimagesr.gabriels.net/reno/imagereader.aspx?IDClient=180&IDListing=180-l-874-4457222&H=510&W=680&ImageURL=http%3A//m.sothebysrealty.com/4i6/6m65wjnsavwdmv20g0cvm0kmz5i6&Option=N

http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-874-4457222/urban-masterpiece-san-antonio-tx-78204?utm_source=NYTimes&utm_medium=Banner&utm_campaign=Slideshow
Nice, but the hours spent on dusting!  Looks like a museum, with all the paintings and the little nooks and crannies. 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: wheeitsme on August 01, 2013, 11:01:37 AM
Spotted a very colorful  ;) home online recently. Is it just me, or does this bathroom door frame look kind of low ?

http://gimagesr.gabriels.net/reno/imagereader.aspx?IDClient=180&IDListing=180-l-874-4457222&H=510&W=680&ImageURL=http%3A//m.sothebysrealty.com/4i6/6m65wjnsavwdmv20g0cvm0kmz5i6&Option=N

http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-874-4457222/urban-masterpiece-san-antonio-tx-78204?utm_source=NYTimes&utm_medium=Banner&utm_campaign=Slideshow

I think the picture's been compressed.  If you really look, everything is a little ...smooshed down.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on August 01, 2013, 11:09:19 AM
Spotted a very colorful  ;) home online recently. Is it just me, or does this bathroom door frame look kind of low ?

http://gimagesr.gabriels.net/reno/imagereader.aspx?IDClient=180&IDListing=180-l-874-4457222&H=510&W=680&ImageURL=http%3A//m.sothebysrealty.com/4i6/6m65wjnsavwdmv20g0cvm0kmz5i6&Option=N

http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-874-4457222/urban-masterpiece-san-antonio-tx-78204?utm_source=NYTimes&utm_medium=Banner&utm_campaign=Slideshow

I think the picture's been compressed.  If you really look, everything is a little ...smooshed down.

Wide angle lens in confined spaces also creates distortion.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: MizA on August 07, 2013, 03:17:40 AM
I am utterly in love with that house. Utterly.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Syfygeek on August 23, 2013, 05:14:11 PM
My very first apartment was in an old house that had been divided- 2 apartments downstairs and one upstairs.

Mine was one of the one downstairs- rooms were in one long row, to get to the bathroom from the kitchen, you had to go thru the bedroom. but the living room was accessed from the bathroom. And every room except the bathroom had a door that opened into the communal hallway and could be opened with the same skeleton key. I spent many nights double checking that all the doors were locked.

 
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: norrina on September 01, 2013, 10:47:06 AM
Back in '99/'00, then-husband and I were looking for a place to rent, but being young and still in college, our budget was pretty tight. We went to see one place that was a single-wide trailer out in the country. It was on some very nice acreage, and had a large deck, so the outdoor space was fabulous and I was in love. When we went inside though, the trailer appeared to be from the 60s. My favorite feature was the master "bathroom". You went into the master bedroom, and towards the far end of the bedroom was a platform, covered in shag carpeting. The garden tub was sunk into the platform. Off to the right was the his and hers sinks. Then straight back was a little cubby, with saloon doors, housing the toilet. I could have dealt with the sinks in the bedroom, but the un-enclosed toilet was a little icky, and then the tub sunk into the shag carpeting was absolutely a no-go.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: #borecore on September 01, 2013, 10:58:42 AM
We have already "house hunted," I suppose, but it sure was weird when a light switch and outlet suddenly appeared on our bathroom wall on Friday! I had not been home much that day, but my husband certainly had been to the bathroom several times and hadn't noticed a thing.

We are renting, and we'd complained that the vanity lights (over the mirror) were working, but the overhead light and the single bathroom outlet were not. Suddenly, there's a new switch to control the vanity lights, the old switch controls the now-working overhead light, and the new plugs are nice, actually fit things, and have a reset button. I'm happy but rather put off at the same time by the maintenance crew not telling us they were coming, or that they came.

We also had a spontaneously operating French door a week ago -- its hinges had been broken on one side, but one day I pushed the door by accident and it didn't almost fall off!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: TeamBhakta on September 14, 2013, 04:55:38 PM
I assume there's a toilet behind the curtain in this rental space. I cracked up at "A dividing wall between the bathroom and main living area could be a nice addition for tenants seeking privacy." As opposed to, I guess, "Gee, Bob, this is a great space. But there's a wall blocking the view between the bathroom and the kitchen table. And gosh darn it, I like knowing I can see your buddy Fred on the john out of the corner of my eye...."

http://homes.yahoo.com/photos/yahoo-homes-of-the-week-homes-for-sale-with-added-rent-potential-1379092060-slideshow/yahoo-homes-of-the-week-homes-for-sale-with-added-rent-potential-photo-1379091453070.html

http://homes.yahoo.com/photos/yahoo-homes-of-the-week-homes-for-sale-with-added-rent-potential-1379092060-slideshow/yahoo-homes-of-the-week-homes-for-sale-with-added-rent-potential-photo-1379091453036.html

http://homes.yahoo.com/photos/yahoo-homes-of-the-week-homes-for-sale-with-added-rent-potential-1379092060-slideshow/yahoo-homes-of-the-week-homes-for-sale-with-added-rent-potential-photo-1379091452984.html
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: JoW on September 14, 2013, 07:05:08 PM
Some older, smaller homes have, instead of bedroom doors, wall-mounted folding screens. The folds to about 4" wide and 2" thick.  (5 cm x 2 cm). In my grandparents' house the kids bedrooms had them.  DH's grandmother's house had them, too.

In the house I'm in now the laundry room and one bath room are in one long narrow space.  That sort of screen separates a bathroom from the laundry area.  That might be a good idea, someone could use the toilet while someone else was loading the washing machine.  But in my house you walk through the bathroom area to get to the laundry. I've never closed that screen.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lilfox on September 16, 2013, 03:35:33 PM
Weird features in a house I shared with grad school roommates (I moved in as the third roommate):  the house was built in the early 1900s.  Over the years, previous owners had put up their choice of paint and/or wallpaper without removing the previous - the wallpaper while I was there was probably 3 decades old so where it peeled off, it exposed multiple layers underneath it.

We think the upstairs bathroom was a later addition - it was tiny and had the accordion folding door rather than a solid one - it did not fold very well, either.  The sink also had two separate spigots for hot and cold (the hot was boiling, the cold was icy), separated by 3 or so inches, so getting lukewarm water was not an option.

In addition to those charming features and the peeling/rotting wood front porch, the existing housemates were not domestically inclined, so the floors had tumbleweeds of dog fur while the ceiling corners had pretty substantial cobwebs.  They had lived there for a year already and while each owned a dog, neither owned a vacuum.  My parents were aghast that I was going to live there and wanted me to back out of my agreement.  I told them for the kind of low rent deal I got, I was fine with it.  After all, I did have a vacuum.   :P
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xandraea on September 16, 2013, 11:54:10 PM
This house has an odd bathroom. There's a floor level window in the shower. 

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2013/05/16/greathomesanddestinations/20130516-LOCATION.html?ref=realestate&_r=0#4

The floor-to-ceiling window is within the bathroom though. The window to outside is long, narrow, and high-up on the wall. It appears this is a house for a couple, so privacy in the shower isn't necessary.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on September 17, 2013, 10:24:35 AM
I don't find the glass shower enclosure odd. It is very common here. After all, the main function is to keep water in the shower. Anyone who is in the bathroom while I am showering will have seen everything there is to see before.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Ereine on September 17, 2013, 10:33:33 AM
This house has an odd bathroom. There's a floor level window in the shower. 

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2013/05/16/greathomesanddestinations/20130516-LOCATION.html?ref=realestate&_r=0#4

The floor-to-ceiling window is within the bathroom though. The window to outside is long, narrow, and high-up on the wall. It appears this is a house for a couple, so privacy in the shower isn't necessary.

There's another very low window. I don't know if you can see anything but legs of the people in the shower.
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: lady_disdain on September 17, 2013, 10:59:02 AM
I hadn't seen that!

My parents had a gorgeous house on a beachfront lot, where you could step off the property straight on the beach. The main bathroom faced the beach and had a chest high window. My father had it built that way so you could stand under the shower and lean on the window sill, looking out over the beach but have all relevant parts covered by the wall. It was great!
Title: Re: Weird features spotted while house hunting
Post by: Xandraea on September 17, 2013, 11:40:47 AM
This house has an odd bathroom. There's a floor level window in the shower. 

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2013/05/16/greathomesanddestinations/20130516-LOCATION.html?ref=realestate&_r=0#4

The floor-to-ceiling window is within the bathroom though. The window to outside is long, narrow, and high-up on the wall. It appears this is a house for a couple, so privacy in the shower isn't necessary.

There's another very low window. I don't know if you can see anything but legs of the people in the shower.

Oh, I'd missed that one, kind of hiding behind the counter from this view.  Nice to have light, sure, but that placement is odd.