Author Topic: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!  (Read 94444 times)

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Susiqzer

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #30 on: February 23, 2013, 03:23:24 PM »
Oh, memories...

We were house-hunting during the housing boom, so anything that lingered on the market was... sub-par, we'll say.

The first house was fantastic, except that you could see moss growing from under the 30-year-old roof, which clearly needed to be replaced. The realtor said that the owner was unwilling to budge on the price or do any "clearly unnecessary" repairs. Ok, PASS.

The second house was also great, but the owners had creepy displays of dolls in every nook and cranny. We got past that, and the kitchen that needed work, until the owner started discussing how he was currently on the outs with the town board of health, over his septic system... and proceeded to rant how it was fine, and nothing needed to be done, they'd lived there for years and were all ok. Apparently the septic and well were too close. We passed on that one too!

The third house took the cake, though. It was a 1950's ranch, with an upstairs addition to make it a colonial. The upstairs was lovely: large bedrooms, gorgeous bathrooms, absolutely beautiful. The downstairs was still 1950. The kitchen had a built-in oven so small, none of my pans would have fit! I'm not living in a place where I can't bake brownies!!! It was when we opened the breeze-way -- against their realtors instructions (ya, right) -- that we learned where they kept their dogs. The scent was overwhelming... I backed out and went immediately out the front door. Another pass!

After those houses, we focused on new construction. :)


Secret Squirrel

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #31 on: February 23, 2013, 04:02:31 PM »
3 years ago DH and I were house hunting and went to a house but the front door was locked.  The realtor could not get in with the key she took from the lock box.  We waited at the front door and the realtor went around back, went through a back door and came to the front to let us in.  We started to look through the house (which was pretty horrid!  Messy, broken everything, etc.). 

As we went down the hallway, I noticed the realtor turn around with a look of absolute horror and push us back toward the door! We found out, once outside, that she was about to open the bedroom door (which was open a crack) and noticed "someone lying in the bed with an arm as big as my thigh and harry as a bear!"

Funny thing - we went back later in the day (the coast was clear) and in the basement was a bunch of stuff, like a typical unfinished basement but had a toilet on one side.  Yes, it was a working toilet (i flushed it with my foot) - right in the open, no walls, no curtain, nothing.  I guess it would come in handy if you had the urge to go while doing laundry....

Snooks

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #32 on: February 23, 2013, 05:06:34 PM »
We looked at an apartment where you couldn't open the bedroom door of the second bedroom if you had even a single bed in the room.  The main bedroom didn't have a wardrobe or space for one and the estate agent just kept telling us to "think what you would do with the space".  Well I wouldn't be storing any clothes that's for certain.

mmswm

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #33 on: February 23, 2013, 05:12:26 PM »
Oh, I forgot about the rainbow puke house!

Bedroom 1:  Bright Teal walls, matching teal ceiling fan, white ceiling,  hot pink carpets.

Bedroom 2:  Mustard yellow ceiling, burnt orange walls.

Bedroom 3:  Purple ceiling and walls

Bedroom 4: Red walls, Blue ceiling.

Living Room: Kelly green walls, yellow trim, white ceiling.

Kitchen:  Maroon everything with a little ivory trim work.

It really looked like a rainbow came in and puked everywhere.
Some people lift weights.  I lift measures.  It's a far more esoteric workout. - (Quoted from a personal friend)

Julian

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #34 on: February 23, 2013, 05:53:43 PM »
House 1 - I had an appointment with the real estate agent, he never showed.  I sat outside the house in my car, and waited.  Turns out the tenants had refused a viewing, the agent never bothered to call me back, so I left.  Probably a good thing, from what I saw of the street as I waited outside.  Way too busy, lots of hooning in cars, generally not the sort of area I wanted to live in.

House 2 - an open house pre-auction.  It was built on the side of a hill (more like a cliff!) with the front of the house street-level to the road, and the rear of the house about 2 stories above ground level.  It was pokey, unstable (you could feel the house shifting as people walked around) and somebody nearly fell through the rear deck as the boards were so weakened.  If you were up to demolishing and rebuilding, it may have been a good deal at the anticipated auction price, but it ended up going for over twice that.  I'm still shaking my head on that one!

House 3 - well, where do I start?  A removal house in the middle of nowhere, on a half-acre block with only driveway street frontage.  60m long driveway.  The house looked quite small from the outside, but inside it was huge.  The owner was an interstate landlord, long term tenants, and the landlord obviously hadn't spent a cent on the place since he bought it.  Many broken windows (some obviously from the move), damp, and the decor from hell.  As an example - the living room had bucket yellow walls, fire engine red external door, grape purple internal window frame, orange curtains, a terracotta orange archway into the kitchen, and bright blue carpet.  One bedroom, while the walls were pretty enough (pale blue with a wallpaper trim), the tenants, presumably in an attempt to cheer up the otherwise fairly grim house, had dawbed grape purple paint around the window frames, and the doorway was alternating orange with yellow and purple daubs with yellow with orange and purple dawbs.  The kitchen was a tiny little area with two small benches and a stove in the corner of an otherwise huge room, mostly taken with a mudroom and doorway.  The rest of the space was otherwise unused but for a kitchen table.  The bathroom, oh dear, the bathroom...  it was one internal room with just a tub with an oldfashioned shower rose over it.  The other end of the bathroom went into a shotgun toilet, with a vanity, so you had to pass through the bathroom to get to the loo.  Off the mudroom was a laundry with a second toilet in it, and a big hot water system taking up much of the room.  Most of the damp seemed to emanate from there.  The kitchen was painted terracotta orange with blue skirting boards.  The smallest bedroom was papered with dark blue flowery wallpaper, and bright orange shag carpet.  The main bedroom I couldn't get into to view - the tenant's adult son was sleeping off the night before.  When I did finally see it, it was to find flowery wallpaper - most of which had been pulled off, and multiple staples in the walls, and the same orange shag carpet, with big holes in it.  And when I spoke to the tenant, she let me know about the dodgy wiring and a few other issues.  I also couldn't get into the front hall because it was full of boxes and curtained off.

Well, I bought House 3.  9' ceilings, Tasmanian Oak hardwood floors under all that horrible carpet (and the layers of masonite and/or laminate under it to even up the floor) and enormous bedrooms.  Several years and a lot of hard work later, and I have a huge modern kitchen, a large comfortable bathroom with a corner spa tub, three bright comfortable bedrooms, a very comfortable lounge room and the biggest office / sewing room you can imagine.  Before the renovation it held a pool table, lounge, desk and a very large oldfashioned electric brick heater.  Oh, and I have also built a three car garage with verandah, which is great for entertaining if it rains.


magician5

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #35 on: February 23, 2013, 05:59:07 PM »
When I was helping my father house-hunt, we visited one house that had a massive rug loosely tacked to the wall. I found it odd because it didn't look like a permanent fixture, but like someone had just stuck it up ten minutes earlier. I lifted the corner of the rug out of curiosity (it was only attached at the top) and found a massive garish mural of the family painted on the wall underneath. We were more put off by them trying to hide it, than the mural.

Makes you think "Hmmm ... what else may they be trying to hide?"
There is no 'way to peace.' Peace is the way.

magician5

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #36 on: February 23, 2013, 06:03:37 PM »
One was a stone cottage that used to be a hunting lodge for a larger estate nearby. Behind an unassuming door was a wrought iron spiral staircase leading down to what I can only describe as a maze of dungeon-like rooms. The only light access we could find was the one hanging above the stairs, so as my husband and I walked further into the basement the darker it got. We used our cell phones as flashlights and every now and then I took flash pictures with my camera to be able to see the actual rooms better.

I keep thinking ..."and waaaaay in the back corner of the darkest basement, an ancient iron-barred door with what looked like claw marks coming from under the sill". Don't knock it, this sort of thing made millions for Steven King.
There is no 'way to peace.' Peace is the way.

Jocelyn

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #37 on: February 23, 2013, 06:36:04 PM »
My realtor and I went to the basement of the house, where there was a room that had been walled off of the main open area. He opened the door, and flipped on the light, and the light bulb was red and dim. He said, 'Oh, a darkroom' and I said, 'Can't be, no one would build a darkroom without access to water.' He got a light bulb from the main part of the building, and put it in an empty socket in the room.
There were stalagtites of mold growing down from the ceiling. Several inches long. We turned and ran.

Thipu1

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #38 on: February 23, 2013, 06:44:41 PM »
Here's a story from a friend.  It's not quite a horror story but has a little frisson to it.

Friend and her DH had a lovely apartment but were mildly interested in a new one with a little more space.  It was in good shape.   It had a nice view of the park and was in a neighborhood they liked.  They met the owner when they visited the place.  He was pleasant and the sale seemed like a definite possibility. 

A week after the visit, friend and DH saw the owner again.  It was on TV and he was being indicted for a very destructive bombing on the subway system.  He was later convicted of the crime.

The sale did not go through. 

Understandably, They really didn't want to move into the home of a 'Mad Bomber'.   

Seraphia

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #39 on: February 23, 2013, 06:46:05 PM »
We're house-hunting right now, but thankfully, haven't seen anything nearly as bad as some of these stories.

The worst so far was really a heartbreaker. It had a great location and a beautiful exterior, but desperately dated inside. The entire downstairs was either paneled in 70's era fake wood, or covered in linoleum or old shag carpet. The kitchen still had the original 70's appliances and cabinets, plus a leak in the ceiling from the (most probably) original 70's plumbing. Upstairs, there a was a long, narrow master bedroom, which could be set up exactly one way: with the bed facing out the sliding doors to the upstairs porch and looking right at the neighbors' windows. Both bathrooms were done completely in Easter pastels - one in canary yellow, the other in pink (including tub). DH and I looked at each other in the car afterwards and shook our heads. It would be a great house for someone, but that someone would need to be willing to renovate just about every room except one spare bedroom and the garage.
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mmswm

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #40 on: February 23, 2013, 07:46:04 PM »
We're house-hunting right now, but thankfully, haven't seen anything nearly as bad as some of these stories.

The worst so far was really a heartbreaker. It had a great location and a beautiful exterior, but desperately dated inside. The entire downstairs was either paneled in 70's era fake wood, or covered in linoleum or old shag carpet. The kitchen still had the original 70's appliances and cabinets, plus a leak in the ceiling from the (most probably) original 70's plumbing. Upstairs, there a was a long, narrow master bedroom, which could be set up exactly one way: with the bed facing out the sliding doors to the upstairs porch and looking right at the neighbors' windows. Both bathrooms were done completely in Easter pastels - one in canary yellow, the other in pink (including tub). DH and I looked at each other in the car afterwards and shook our heads. It would be a great house for someone, but that someone would need to be willing to renovate just about every room except one spare bedroom and the garage.

This actually sounds ideal for me if I was in a position to buy anything right now. :)  I would love to renovate a house like that.  It's one of the reasons why when I was house shopping, I didn't really look at anything built after 1930 or so.
Some people lift weights.  I lift measures.  It's a far more esoteric workout. - (Quoted from a personal friend)

Seraphia

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #41 on: February 23, 2013, 07:50:05 PM »
We're house-hunting right now, but thankfully, haven't seen anything nearly as bad as some of these stories.

The worst so far was really a heartbreaker. It had a great location and a beautiful exterior, but desperately dated inside. The entire downstairs was either paneled in 70's era fake wood, or covered in linoleum or old shag carpet. The kitchen still had the original 70's appliances and cabinets, plus a leak in the ceiling from the (most probably) original 70's plumbing. Upstairs, there a was a long, narrow master bedroom, which could be set up exactly one way: with the bed facing out the sliding doors to the upstairs porch and looking right at the neighbors' windows. Both bathrooms were done completely in Easter pastels - one in canary yellow, the other in pink (including tub). DH and I looked at each other in the car afterwards and shook our heads. It would be a great house for someone, but that someone would need to be willing to renovate just about every room except one spare bedroom and the garage.

This actually sounds ideal for me if I was in a position to buy anything right now. :)  I would love to renovate a house like that.  It's one of the reasons why when I was house shopping, I didn't really look at anything built after 1930 or so.

Oh, absolutely. That's part of the reason I was so sad - I would love to be at a stage of life/experience where we could buy a house and remake it. We just can't afford to spend a couple years, the price of a mortgage, several thousand dollars in tools and materials, then a couple thousand more fixing the mistakes we made the first time around, all on a first home.
Ancora Imparo - I am still learning

BarensMom

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #42 on: February 23, 2013, 07:53:50 PM »
What happened there?

I asked, but my realtor refused to say.  It puzzled me why she was so angry about this one house.  It wasn't as if it was the only one in our town and she'd lose a sale.  It seemed that she was personally offended by whatever "happened there."

Anyone want to take a guess?

I started to say bachelor pad, because the living room and pool had priority over the rest of the house, then it occurred to me that the living room might have used for filming pron.  Maybe the agent recognized the room from a DVD.   ;) 

Amava, burnt orange is a brownish orange that was popular in the 1970's.  It's called "burnt" because the orange looks like it is smoked or scorched.

I'm ashamed to admit I kinda thought the same as your second guess.

It wasn't a bachelor pad, because the wife and two small children were present at the time, with all the accoutrements.  Eye-bleeding brownish orange is exactly correct

There was no gate around the pool (with kids?!?).  You could literally walk outside the back door and down the pool steps with only a 1-foot border from the edge to the door.

Edited to add:  No way of knowing if the p**n idea was correct, but it wouldn't surprise me.  One could host a massive o**y on that sectional.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2013, 08:00:49 PM by BarensMom »

mmswm

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #43 on: February 23, 2013, 08:00:56 PM »

There was no gate around the pool (with kids?!?).  You could literally walk outside the back door and down the pool steps with only a 1-foot border from the edge to the door.

Actually, my old house in Miami (years ago, when the kids were very little and before I moved to North Dakota) was sort of like that with the pool.  There was roughly 18 inches between the sliding glass door off the dining room and the edge of the pool.  I took up most of that space with a gate, though.  And the pool didn't take up even a quarter of the yard, let alone the whole thing.
Some people lift weights.  I lift measures.  It's a far more esoteric workout. - (Quoted from a personal friend)

dawnfire

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Re: S/O: House Hunting Horrors!
« Reply #44 on: February 23, 2013, 08:16:31 PM »

There was no gate around the pool (with kids?!?).  You could literally walk outside the back door and down the pool steps with only a 1-foot border from the edge to the door.

Actually, my old house in Miami (years ago, when the kids were very little and before I moved to North Dakota) was sort of like that with the pool.  There was roughly 18 inches between the sliding glass door off the dining room and the edge of the pool.  I took up most of that space with a gate, though.  And the pool didn't take up even a quarter of the yard, let alone the whole thing.

hubby's foster mum had a place like that.  you went out the back door , down a flight of stairs and you were only 2 or so meters from the pool edge. when pool fences became mandatory, she ended up having replace the sliding door with one that automatically closed and had a high latch