When it comes to other people's homes, the things hidden behind closed doors can be downright disturbing. From visiting a friend's house to making professional house calls, seeing a person's private space can be intimate, illuminating, and sometimes, terrifying. Get ready to cringe because these are some of the most horrifying house calls imaginable.
1. That Would Make For A Shallow Gene Pool
I used to be a pool guy, so I used to go into people’s backyards to clean their pools. Once, it was a four-day week due to a holiday, so I was cramming five days of work into a four-day week. It was a hot summer day, and I walked into the backyard of this house. As I made my way through both gates, I witnessed an odd sight.
I saw two absolutely undressed kids, maybe around 14 or 15 years old, cuddled on a poolside recliner. I looked at them, and they looked at me. I immediately turned around, and they ran inside. I’ve seen the owners all the time, but I’ve never seen those kids before. The next week I went back, and the wife was outside, so we started chit-chatting. That's when I learned the chilling truth.
I asked her if she’d had any visitors recently, and she said no. I let her know that I saw some kids in her backyard, and she cut me off. She said, “Yeah, I’m surprised you haven’t met them, lemme introduce you.” The two kids were brother and sister. They canceled their service within two months.
2. Should Have Used A Webcam
I’m a building inspector. I came across a body—well, skeleton. This was an abandoned house vacated years ago, and there was a trust that just automatically paid the…whatever. So, no one knew. That actually wasn’t the worst part. The worst part was when I opened the front door. I always shove the door open fast and look everywhere as fast as possible to make sure it’s safe. Then I walk fast to the middle of the room and do a 360, looking everywhere quickly.
So this house. I open the door, and it seems clear; I jump to the middle of the room, and it still looks clear. So then I look up...and scream. Every inch of the ceiling in the entire house looks like there’s tulle everywhere. It wasn’t tulle. It was spider webs. I have SEVERE arachnophobia. I ran screaming through the house, taking pictures as fast as possible, because that’s the job—and then I came across the body.
I screamed all the way out, not because of the body but because of the spider webs. Omg, I’m freaking myself out. Again.
3. Quite The Sight
I went over to a neighbor's house in the 90s, a few months after we moved into the neighborhood. They had a son who was a year younger than me and a daughter who was four years younger than her brother. We were hanging out in the garage hitting/passing a hockey puck around when we decided to take a break and have a slight snack.
The brother was eating a chocolate bar of some kind and was finishing his last mouthful when his sister walked in the garage and wanted some of the candy, even though it was basically gone. This is where it gets weird. Her brother jokingly sticks out a portion of chewed-up chocolate bar and asks her if she still wants some.
She replies with a serious, "yes,” and he precedes to transfer some of his pre-chewed chocolate bar directly into his sister’s mouth like a bird! To this day, I have a hard time not visualizing them french kissing a chewed-up chocolate bar when I see them at their parents' house visiting.
4. Pack Rats
I volunteer for a breed-specific dog rescue and do home visits/inspections for people who want to adopt dogs. It’s usually mostly a formality to make sure the potential adopters know the quirks of this breed and are well-prepared to live with them. It also allows them a chance to ask me questions about living with this breed.
One home visit was in a rough part of town. A woman and her 17-year-old child were living in an elderly and incapacitated man’s home. They helped care for him in exchange for a place to live. The house was just generally not in great shape; it was cluttered and not super clean. The woman and her daughter lived upstairs in three small bedrooms, all with the doors shut.
They opened the first room and revealed they were using it to house foster kittens. The second room was the girl’s bedroom. They opened the door, and they’d just crammed it with junk; you couldn’t even get into the room. So the mom and daughter shared the third bedroom. But when they opened the door to the third room, the smell of ammonia instantly hit me. Then I looked inside—and saw something absolutely horrifying.
My eyes were burning; I felt like I couldn’t breathe. There was a mattress on the floor that took up most of the room. Lining the walls were 20-gallon aquarium tanks, all filled with rats: Dozens and dozens of pet rats in each one. There were no bedding or toys for them, just bare glass, food, and water. The glass sides were covered in pee from the rats trying to climb out with their pee-soaked paws.
The woman mentioned she had cleaned those aquariums the day before. I felt so, so bad for those poor little rats. The way she spoke about them, I could tell she loved them very much. She just clearly couldn’t care for them the way she should have. I only stayed in the room for a couple of minutes before wrapping up the visit.
I had a pounding headache from the overwhelming smell. I have no idea how they actually slept in that room. That was the only home I ever visited that I didn’t recommend as an adopter.
5. No Water, No Problem
When I worked as a building inspector, we saw a house that had not paid their water bills and had their water service disconnected. So naturally, their solution was to get a bunch of big blue storage bins from Walmart, cut a hole in one end of the lid, and pee and poop in those. They had five lined up in the living room. There were also four deceased dogs they had hidden in a closet.
I puked for the rest of the day. We obviously condemned the house.
6. That’s Not A Basement
I helped a buddy pull an engine, load it onto his truck, and then move it from his truck into his garage. His garage smelled awful. While moving the engine, I happened to slip and fall, noticing something terrifying in the process. His garage was essentially his basement, on dirt, no concrete or anything. His main sewage pipes were suspended under the house by twine.
There was a large hole dug in the ground and one pipe went straight down into the hole, but ended about 3' down. I asked him what was going on, and he told me that's how the house was when he bought it. Apparently, the house was built long before the city put in sewers, and there was no septic tank either. The previous owner had dug a tunnel under the house leading to a storm drain.
How this passed inspection is beyond me. Maybe the inspector assumed there was a septic tank down there or something. But, that didn’t explain the big hole around the pipe. Apparently, it would get clogged up with toilet paper and they had to dig it out with shovels.
7. Just Trying Their Best
I shadowed a home health therapist once. We went to a house where we had to tuck our pants legs into our socks because of fleas. We drove down this dirt road, and I thought we were going past these abandoned single wide trailers, but then we parked in front of one. This trailer didn’t have steps to enter, you had to boost yourself up. What I found inside broke my heart.
The floor was rotten through to the ground in places, and there was a grandmother with six young kids in there. This is including the one we were seeing who had hydrocephalus. Unfortunately, the mother never got it treated, and neglected the child nearly to the point where they lost their life before grandma found them and took the “baby.” The grandma was really trying her best, but this place was the most unsafe place I had ever ever seen. I hope they got out of there.
8. Put Together And Falling Apart
I just recently had a client who was fairly normal on the outside...clean cut, steady factory job, decent car, etc. Then I walked into his house...I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Inside his house, the roof was rotted through, there were holes in the floor, deceased rodents in the kitchen cupboards, and so much more. But that's not even the weirdest part.
He kept talking about his "wife," but it was abundantly clear that no one lives there with him. This guy has a completely normal life on the outside, but is definitely off.
9. From Bad To Worse
I slept over at a friend's house once, and like many sleepovers, there was no sleeping, but this wasn't for a fun reason. My friend had warned me that they had cockroaches, but never specified how bad. I figured it would be a couple scurrying out when lights were off and that would be it. Little did I know, it was much worse than that.
Wall to wall crawling cockroaches. I had to shake some off of the mat I was supposed to sleep on. Her dad told me about how they oiled the inside of their leftover pop bottles and left bits of food at the bottom to lure them in so they could get rid of them. He then kindly offered me some cotton for my nose and ears so they didn't crawl in while I was asleep.
I convinced my friend we should stay up all night watching movies, and then wait to see the sunrise outside.
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10. No Warning Signs
I was working as a locksmith and got a call to rekey house. I spoke to the client before I showed up, and she seemed like a completely normal lady. I showed up, we talked for a moment outside, and it was a completely normal house from all looks. She's an RN, and there were no warning signs that she was weird or a hoarder.
She goes to open the door and let me in and starts acting sheepish. She starts apologizing and says something like, “Excuse the mess.” I said, "Oh, don't worry about it!" Then the door opened...and my stomach dropped. Actually, I should say the door partly opened, because it couldn't open all the way because of all the trash on the floor. It wasn’t just hoarding boxes or collecting weird stuff, but it was just garbage, rotting stuff, pee, poo...just piles of it.
There's a nine-inch wide walkway through the garbage that's six inches deep of compressed garbage, to-go boxes, fast food bags, magazines...you name it. She walks through to the living room, sits down on a couch that can't be seen due to garbage everywhere, and a cat appears out of nowhere and sits on her lap lovingly.
She seems, for all practical purposes, like a completely normal functioning adult. I looked it up. It's some weird form of the hoarding condition, but just rotting waste. She seemed so normal. I did the job and left, feeling bad for her. It still kind of freaks me out. There's no way you're guessing this nice nurse lady is actually a garbage keeper.
11. Indiana Jones’ Nightmare Bathroom
It was 1996 and a 13-year-old me was walking around the town with my mates. I needed to pee and my mate W said I could use the bathroom at his house. His house was huge. We lived in a village that was mostly two to three bed terraces and semis but this was a double-fronted, detached house in a tiny, hidden avenue and the inside was beautiful.
I reached the bathroom, shut the door, pulled down my pants and sat down. As I was peeing, a movement caught my eye. It was a bathtub full of snakes! Suffice to say, it's a good job my bottom was already over the bowl. I’m not ashamed to say that I didn't even wipe, and I almost fell down the stairs getting out of the house. I never went back.
12. Don’t Tell Anyone
I used to install cable for Comcast. I was at a customer's house inspecting the lines in the basement. The customer was following me around from a slight distance, which I thought was a bit odd. I opened a door to a room and there was a table with at least 100 pounds of weed piled on multiple tables. He quickly grabbed me and shut the door.
He yelled, "You can't go in there," but he was too late. He then looked at me and said, "You're not going to tell anyone about what you saw here right?" I told him I used to sell bulk in college and assured him it would be our secret. He gave me a $200 tip and I went on my way. There were also multiple times I found people's grow rooms.
13. Too Bad It Wasn’t Sightproof…
I’m a realtor, and I was showing a house that was supposed to be empty. I knocked and rang the bell to make sure. Once inside, I walked into a bedroom and found the current tenant totally uncovered and absolutely slamming on an electronic drum kit in what was a mostly soundproof room. He never noticed I was there, but I’ll never forget him.
14. All The Way In The Back
In my career, I have seen many, many dirty hoarder homes. This one elderly gentleman was very nice—but he had the craziest thing in the back bedroom. In an upper corner, was a very large beehive that was active. It extended through the home to the outside. He said that when he first noticed it, he simply shut the door and stopped using that room! I don’t think he was even getting honey as rent payments.
15. Privacy Was Optional
I’m a former babysitter, and this one house that I used to babysit at had a toilet in the hallway. It wasn’t a bathroom, just a toilet literally in the middle of a carpeted hallway against a wall that totally worked. It was parallel to the wall, not perpendicular—there was zero covering around it, and it faced the stairway.
So, if you used it, and somebody came up the stairs, you would be making eye contact. I never understood it. It looked like someone just set a toilet down for a minute. There was a full bathroom just six feet away connected to the hallway.
16. Under The Layers
I had to go check an apartment because we’d had a tip that there could be moisture damage. The apartment belonged to a retired older man and apparently when he had a nurse visit him at home, they had made the report to building maintenance. When we got to the bathroom, me and my partner saw something that haunts me to this day.
The ceiling was black. The walls were black. Everything was covered in a solid black wall of mold. The man living there had no sense of what it was or what it meant. That mold had to have been growing for quite a while, and I have no idea how long he had lived there breathing it in, without no one even coming to visit to see and report it. I have no idea what happened to the apartment or the resident, but I’m sure the bathroom had to be fully made anew and I’m hoping the man is living somewhere safer.
17. Just Slowly Back Away
I installed sod at this lady’s newly built home. She was in her mid-60s, maybe. Anyway, she didn’t know where the valve to the exterior tap was in the basement, and she asked if I could go down and turn it on for her. No problem. I go down the stairs to the unfinished basement, and it’s pitch dark. I find a light switch and turn the light on—and almost screamed.
Suddenly, I see a 400-pound uncovered man asleep on a mattress just three feet away from me. The lady never mentioned this before I went downstairs...
18. Dirty Doesn’t Begin To Describe It
My best friend's parents never cleaned the house. All the cleaning that ever happened in that house was when the children were doing their chores, which the parents paid them for. There were crumbs, dust bunnies, stains and general dirt everywhere. There was cutlery lying in random places on the floor of the house. No one ever did laundry and there were dirty clothes piles all over the place. But that wasn't all.
They had a cat and a dog at the time so there was also a lot of hair and cat litter, as well as crumbs from their dry food all across the floors. There were three bedrooms, and this family consisted of a mom and a dad and their six children, two of which had moved out. One of the bedrooms didn't have a door because it had broken and no one bothered fixing it.
There were two bathrooms, but out of the two bathrooms, only one was functioning and the door wasn't lockable. The one that wasn't functioning, well, it was just sitting there. They could've at least turned the non bathroom into a storage or something. The beds didn't have clean sheets, and all the pillows and blankets were old and lumpy.
I hated visiting my best friend for all these reasons but she didn't seem to understand why I never wanted to come over. The few times I actually went to her house it always felt like something stuck to your socks every step you took. The floor always seemed to be moist or something and the dishes were piling up in the kitchen, despite then having a dishwasher. That house was gross. I hated it.
19. It Was Just A Baby
A strange thing someone I know had in their house was a pet raccoon. That had free roam of the entire house. I was friends with twins growing up, and their dad owned his own construction business. While demolishing a house, he accidentally injured a mama raccoon and ended up taking her baby home to the family to keep as a pet.
I did not know this when I visited their house once and saw the thing emerge from a laundry basket in the hallway. I completely freaked out. The two brothers were trying to figure out why I was reacting that way. I'm still good friends with them to this day and this incident occurred in the mid 80s.
20. Get A Room
Back when I was a senior in high school, I had all of my required credits so I had an early release where I got to leave school a period early. I convinced my best friend to cut her last class and come hang out with me. She wanted to go home to change before we went out, so I drove her home and we walked into her house. I'll never forget what we saw next.
As we entered, we found her dad on the family computer watching a live webcam girl and doing intimate stuff. This was back when most families had one computer in a neutral area for the whole family. Considering that guy was basically my second dad, it was even worse. We just ran straight up the stairs and shouted "Hey, we're home early!"
I couldn't look him in the eyes for years after. She was understandably embarrassed but like I said, this was my second family so she just went into denial mode and it was never talked about again.
21. Two Times The Strange
I was at a house for a cable TV service call. The customer, strangely, wasn't home, so I called him. He said, "I will be home in five minutes, and don't freak out, but I have a tiger on the truck." When he got there, he had a tiger in a cage on the back of his truck. I got to pet the thing, feed it a little—but that was just the beginning. I then went on to see his venomous snake collection, his hand grenade collection, and his hot sauce collection.
The very next day, I was at another service call, and asked the customer to get to the pole in the backyard. He told me that he has a tiger in the backyard, so I shouldn't freak out. I got to pet the thing, and feed it a little. I had been working cable for 18 years to that point, and had never encountered a tiger in all that time. I have been working cable for seven years since, and have had no further encounters with tigers in that time. But, for two days consecutively, I visited homes with tigers.
22. Love Me Some Sweet Milk
It was the early 1990s when I was a kid. I slept over at a buddy’s house for the first time. The next morning we woke up and his mom made us cereal. The milk tasted sweet, even for my childhood taste buds. Something about it all seemed off. Just as my buddy finished his bowl of cereal, his mom came over and turned the bowl on its side to pour the leftover milk from the cereal bowl into a milk carton.
The mom then did the same with hers. I felt my face turn red with shame and embarrassment and my stomach turn. Horrified and confused, I asked, “What is that? What are y’all doing?” He turned to me and said, “That’s our cereal milk.” As it turned out, his ENTIRE family poured all of the leftover milk from each bowl of cereal back into a separate milk carton, specifically for cereal. I drank this entire family’s backwash.
23. Keeping All The Things
My dad's business partner bought a home on our street after the lady who lived there passed. She didn’t have any living relatives. My dad was tasked with getting the place cleaned out and ready for contractors since we lived across the street. The woman who passed was always a nice lady and we’d often hang out with her on her porch, where she taught my sister and I to knit.
We were never invited inside and never really asked to be. At my age, I didn’t really think anything of it. Anyway, my dad was REALLY excited to show us the place but kept a secret what was so “crazy” about it. We walked in to find out she was a hoarder! The entire house was filled with massively tall piles of junk, save for the walking paths through each room which were actually quite neat and the bathroom which only had a pile as tall as the toilet seat.
What was strange is that it didn’t even smell much at all! I’d seen hoarding TV shows and they always noted the horrible stench. It definitely didn’t smell good, but all the junk was basically brand new things still wrapped up in their packaging or their store bags. It seemed she just had a shopping addiction but was still a neat lady.
24. Playback Time
I went to a girl’s sleepover when I was about eight years old. There were three of us. The girl’s dad put an audio recorder under the teddies on top of her cupboard when he came in to hand them out. We were talking about crushes at school and such. The next day he played the recording out loud to wake us up, laughing, and listening closely to what we were talking about, in front of us.
25. Dedicated To Journalism
I had a friend many years ago who was a scientist. He was very intelligent and fun to be around. The first time I went to the house he owned with his partner, who was also a lovely person who had a good job in social service, he gave me a tour around the house. He proudly showed me the "newspaper room" they had in the back. I couldn't believe what I was seeing.
In it were years worth of every day's daily newspapers, stacked in piles around every wall up almost until to the ceiling. The consensus among other friends was that it was a bit OCD, but hey, whatever. I can't really remember what happened to the newspapers, but I think he ended up growing out of it eventually.
26. No Doubt That House Was Haunted
One seriously disturbing thing I found as a termite contractor was bones from a deceased body. I was under a crawl space and found a bone that looked like a human femur. It turned out it was...I called for law enforcement, gave a report, and then got the heck out of there.
27. An Awkward Encounter
In the 90s, I had a summer job at a small electronic repair shop. I had to deliver and reconnect an elderly woman’s 32-inch television (this was the tube kind, it was huge and heavy). I get to her trailer, and she answers the door. I’m greeted by a woman in her 70s wearing a thin cotton shirt as a dress that barely reached her mid-thigh and was essentially transparent, wearing no underwear, with everything on full display.
I kept my eyes averted as I hauled the TV in and reconnected it to the cable box and VCR. When I finished, she took me to her bedroom—crosses and crucifixes of all shapes and sizes covered all four walls. She pointed out gold plated ones, a crucifix made from olive wood from Israel, another of lapis lazuli, etc. She spent a good half-hour telling me the story of each one.
28. No Cleaning, Ever
As a loan officer, I had to go to a person's home to get loan documents signed pretty regularly. There was one woman...where do I begin? She was a surgical nurse in a big hospital. The house smelled so bad. I had to use the restroom and there was a huge cockroach smashed on the wall just above the sink, literally two inches from a toothbrush.
The tub and toilet had a black ring of dirt like they had never been cleaned. The dining room table was full of trash and empty cat food cans where they just opened the can to feed the four cats sitting on the table. It was absolutely disgusting!
29. A Different Kind Of Pool Shock
I used to clean pools with my brother during the summer, and we once walked into someone’s yard as they were slaughtering three big pigs. In the Dominican Republic, my family owned a farm and slaughtered animals for food too, so it wasn’t the slaughtering itself that was weird. But they were letting the pigs bleed out into the pool we were about to clean.
We dipped out immediately. No way we were gonna be able to clean it without draining the whole thing. The family was from Cuba; we had to tell them that in America, you can’t do things like that in the suburbs.
30. A Man’s Garage Is His Castle
I had a best friend with a big house. His dad was a HUGE garage dad. He had his brand new fishing boat that he cleaned every day in there, all his trophies, life relics, everything was in the garage. The floor of the garage was nicely carpeted, and legit everything in there was spotless. Anytime I went over, his dad spent most of his waking hours in that garage.
My friend, his brother and I somehow got into a "water battle" with the garden hose and some super soakers. I can't remember how or why it started, but as you can guess, we moved our battle into the garage and left the garden hose running inside. We must've left it running from lunchtime, and his dad didn't come home until 5 or 6 pm.
I'll never forget the earth-shattering screams and wails I heard. My friend's mom just closed her eyes, sobbing, as my friend and his brother begged for her to do something while their dad dragged them into that garage. The screams and yelling from the dad inside the garage continued for the entire hour it took for my parents to come and pick me up.
31. There’s Two Of Them
I went into a woman's house that had a lifesize replica/mannequin of herself mutilated and injured. As it turns out, she's a semi-pro actress. She's been an extra in a dozen or so motion pictures. One of which was a B level hack film. The special effects crew made a latex replica of her for a couple scenes in the movie and they let her keep it afterwards. It was very real looking. From a foot away, you'd think it was a real mutilated body. Creepy, but I can't blame her for wanting to keep it.
32. A Literal Waste Of Space
I had a job doing estimates for insulation and other attic work. One time, I showed up at a house that needed an insulation quote, and as soon as they opened the door, I started gagging from a smell that was burning my eyes and nose. My first thought was that smells like ammonia. I fought through it and asked the owner where the attic access was, and he opened up the garage.
I kid you not; there were cat and dog excrement everywhere with water stains all over the concrete that was most definitely urine-soaked through permanently. The smell of ammonia was so overwhelming I thought I was going to pass out from oxygen deprivation. The waste was everywhere and piled on top of each other. You couldn’t take one step in the garage without stepping on it.
Still standing outside the garage door, I saw the access had no ladder, so I told the guy I would be right back with my ladder. I got in my car and took a few minutes to catch my breath, then called my boss as I noped out of there. My boss called animal control, but I have no idea what happened after that.
33. Crusty Corner
I went over to a guy’s house and there was about a four foot area of the carpet that was kind of white and crunchy with some splatters around the perimeter. There was a smell as well. I just casually observed that he should probably clean up milk when he spills it instead of leaving it to just dry because it is kind of gross. But the truth was even grosser than I thought.
Dude goes slowly red and I realized it was a giant cum stain. No idea how long he'd been just letting it fly onto the floor and leaving it there for it to grow to that size.
I saw a woman with a jacuzzi in the center of her carpeted bedroom that she and her four foster children bathed in; there was no showerhead or curtain. They also all shared a toilet in her bedroom that had no walls or door around it. There was absolutely no privacy. All of the kids slept in the living room while she slept in the master bedroom. But that was just the beginning.
During my home inspection, I found three doors that had been completely plastered over and couldn’t be accessed. She informed me that one led to a full bathroom, and the other two were bedrooms. None were accessible, but she insisted that she used them to “store her tools.” I was so creeped the heck out.
There was no possible way for her to get to her “tools” from those rooms. The kids could have had bedrooms, and there was no need for anyone to be bathing or using the toilet in front of anyone else. One of them was a 12-year-old girl—imagine getting your first period in that home. I did everything I could to help the kids move.
35. No New Relationships
A friend of mine had converted her loft space into a spare room, which her ex-boyfriend moved into after they split up. They were not living together prior to the split. I always found that a bit weird, because he had to go into her bedroom and pull down the loft ladder to access his own room. It must have been awkward when they had new boyfriends/girlfriends staying over!
36. It Was No Skin Off Their Backs
While working as a termite contractor, I noticed a plaque the size of a large clock above someone’s mantle. It had names where the numbers would be and a small trinket below each name. I wished I never asked about it because it turned out the “trinkets” were actually the preserved circumcision skins from all the men in their family.
There is absolutely no appropriate way to respond to something like that. I literally just left the room and acted like I never heard anything.
37. Not The First Time
I’m a current realtor, but a former cable and fiber optic tech. The weirdest thing I ever saw in someone’s house was chicken intestines. They were just draped over a wooden bar hanging from the ceiling, dripping onto the floor in the basement. From the looks of the stains, this was not the first time they’d done it. The smell was indescribable.
38. Waiting For Too Long
I did home hospice nursing for a few months. You’d be surprised how cluttered and dirty even homes in nice neighborhoods can be. I had one house I went to where the patient had vomited all over the carpet hours before. The family member said they didn’t clean it up yet because they were waiting for someone to bring them carpet cleaner.
So, they laid a towel over the vomit pile/chunks. Mind you, this carpet was matted and stained all over. It didn’t need a specialty cleaner. They could have used any cleaning product they had on hand and it would have been better than waiting hours.
39. Put Some Clothes On!
Oh man, this brings back a memory of when I went to my buddy’s house to see if he wanted to hang out. This was pre-cell phones, so you would just ring someone's doorbell to ask. I rang and no one answered but I waited for a couple moments. I then saw my friend's dad run behind uncovered past the door and up the stairs. I still chuckle about that to this day.
40. More Of A Bath Family
I was at an old friend’s house years ago. I was also friends with her parents who were amazing artists and professors at a local university. I’d never gone in their family bathroom upstairs. Their house was never dirty or anything, just a really lived-in farmhouse with clutter. There were books piled everywhere but that’s fine, even interesting.
I wasn’t prepared for their bathroom though. Most of the bathroom was pretty normal, maybe a little messy. But it was their shower that caught my eye. The curtain was pulled back and I could see the whole thing. It didn’t look like it had ever been cleaned! It was so bad that I would never, under any circumstances, be willing to attempt to shower in it.
I would sooner hose myself off in the backyard. I’d rather shower at a truck stop. Disgusting. It was so bad that if you had to clean it, you’d have to start with a large putty sharp tool or something to scrape the dirt and hair out.
41. Someone’s Always Waiting
I do pest control and when I climbed an attic ladder and switched on my flashlight, I almost had a heart attack. There was a person up there waiting for me! As it turns out, they kept a mannequin in the attic to scare squirrels. It didn't work and the squirrels were nesting two feet away. They obviously scared the heck out of me. I also found Her Royal Majesty, The Queen of England, in life-size cutout form in a basement closet. That also scared the heck out of me.
42. They’re Just My Daughters’
I worked for a moving company and we went into a lady’s house and kept finding needles everywhere. They were behind the furniture, down in the couch, and in the chair cushions. We stopped after a couple of minutes and refused to finish the job. It turns out that her teenage daughter was diabetic, and would just toss the finger needles and syringes everywhere.
She honestly didn’t understand why we refused to touch the furniture after one of the guys carried some cushions and wound up with a needle stuck in his shirt.
43. Funny But Mean
My best friend in junior high lived with her grandmother, and granny collected dolls. She had an entire room upstairs full of them. One of them was life size and it laid on the bed in that room. It was creepy if you didn’t know what was going on in there, so naturally, anytime any other friends joined us at her house we told them it was her deceased aunt that they had taken to a taxidermist.
Then we would shove that other friend in the room with no lights on and shut the door.
44. Just Get Out Of There
I was installing a security keypad in the master bedroom of a couple around Dallas, TX. I was instructed to put the thing right next to a collage of photos of this guy's wife. Think of it like a shrine. Luckily, she wasn't home and I tried to get out ASAP. Just as I finished the job, his wife made it home and I just got the heck out of there.
45. Privacy, Who Needs It?
Not what I saw, but the actual house itself. In the early 2000s, I had a friend who moved from another state—Michigan, I think—and her parents had a brand new house, custom built. The weird part is that there were no doors inside. Literally, no doors anywhere. No doors on the bedrooms, no doors on the bathrooms, just extra large open doorways.
All of the bedrooms, including the parents' room, were along one hallway, which was open to the living room, so literally no privacy. You could sit on the couch and see into every bedroom. The doorless bathroom was at the end of the hall. There was a tiny three foot wall blocking the toilet from view, but that was it, nothing else.
The parents had a bathroom attached to their room as well, and it too had no door. I've always wondered if the utter lack of privacy was a Michigan thing, or they were just weird people
46. Not Your Typical Collection
I’m an EMT. The weirdest thing I ever saw in someone else’s house was of a man who collected/hoarded LED lights and toys. Imagine walking into a house full of boxes and boxes of LED light pens, light-up fidget balls, light-up cat toys...you get it. I'm talking about Edison's dream house. He also slept on an inversion table, didn't have a fridge, no TV, no radio, 1000s of books and magazines, and a hot plate with rows and rows of canned food. I miss him sometimes.
47. Just Doing A Favour
I used to do home repairs for the Home Owners Association in my neighborhood a few years back. One day, I was tasked with replacing the cabinets in one of the elderly woman’s houses since she wasn’t able to do it herself. She kept the weirdest thing I've ever seen. Inside the cabinet was a literal jar of pee on a hot plate. She told me that she peed in a jar every week and kept it on a hot plate so that her granddaughter could pass the drug test that her job made her do. The worst part was that the whole cabinet smelled of her pee.
48. Age Is Just A Number
I’m a painter, and in the process of covering the clothes in a wardrobe with plastic and masking up, I uncovered a box hidden by the clothes hanging over it. It had possibly the biggest strap-on kit I’ve ever seen; it was easily a 10-inch plus. I should mention I mainly do repaints of retirement homes. Them old folks are wild.
49. Cult Cleaning Contract
I know someone who runs a cleaning operation. Once they were contracted to "clean" a house that was the home of some kind of cult. He sent us the video: knee-deep in filth and garbage in every room, they couldn’t see the floor. Walls were covered with sheets of paper, news clippings, and extracts from the bible…It was unsettling.
50. Too Many Of One Thing
My direct job was not to go to clients’ households, but I have been “asked” to do it before. The worst place I went to was a house filled from top to bottom with cat carriers. It smelled like urine and you only had a small walkway that led to the kitchen. Of course, we had to get a fridge into the house. To do that, we had to take the doors off.
The client told us to take the old fridge away, and we said, “No, that’s not in the order.” We left as soon as we put the doors back on.
51. Where’s The Sister?
I used to install Dish Network for a living. I was installing for an elderly lady who complained that her "sister's" TV always showed the same thing hers did. I had a two TV installation order, so I figured that would be OK. I finished the installation and was demonstrating the system—that's when everything clicked into place. She looked at the full-length mirror and complained that her sister's TV was still showing the same thing.
I got out of there as quickly as I could and left notes on the account in case she called in.
52. Dirty Motto To Live By
In highschool, my close group of four friends, including myself, would regularly spend time at each other's houses, but we never went to my friend Jen's house. Finally one day, we decided to go to her place, and it was a nice house in a really good neighborhood. But then she opened the door, and there was junk everywhere.
Stuff piled four feet high over every inch of floor space, except for little 12" wide pathways through the house. The garbage bin was full and stuff had been piled an extra two feet on top of it. Every inch of counter space had dishes with nasty food stuck to it. We went to the unfinished basement to use the computer and there were balls of dog hair the size of soccer balls rolling around.
There was even dog poop in a few spots. I guess she saw the look on our faces because she casually said, “my parents think life's too short to spend all their free time cleaning.” Ok, cool, I get that, but like, taking out the trash takes like two minutes! The weirdest part was walking into her room and her sister’s room and both were spotless.
53. Swim Date Scuffle
I was meant to stay the night with a kid just a few doors down from my grandparents’. He lived with his grandparents and his grandpa was a facilities manager at an upscale apartment complex and offered to take us swimming there for the day. His grandfather dropped us off at the main pool and said he’d be back in a while.
The pool was Olympic-sized and simply had too many people, so we decided to explore and ended up at a smaller pool on the property elsewhere. We were swimming, having a good time and everything was great—that is, until he started a splash fight. We were going back and forth and then he started screaming at me at the top of his lungs. Then he went too far, and I knew I had to act.
He ends up cornering me and tries to push me under the water, still screaming. I wrestle myself free and hit him square in the nose. His nose started bleeding like Niagara Falls and he started cursing at me repeatedly as loud as his lungs could muster. I got out of the pool and grabbed my things and headed back to the front of the complex. People were staring and trying to calm him down. He started walking after me, hands at his sides in fists, covered in blood from his nose.
I make it back to the front of the complex and am desperately trying to get someone to let me use a phone to call home. No one would listen. They’re enamored with the screaming kid who, by the way, is still lumbering after me. He’s a mess. Out of nowhere, his grandfather appears and snatches him up and disappears with him through a door. I was still trying to get someone to let me use a phone when his grandfather reappeared.
He asked me what happened then told me he has to take the kid home, and that I can’t go with them. They finally let me use the phone. My parents didn’t answer, so I ended up getting ahold of my aunt who was still working and couldn’t come to get me for another two hours. The office wouldn’t let me stay inside so I was outside in the parking lot standing around waiting, still having no idea what happened.
My aunt showed up and off we went. When I got home, I got yelled at for being so far from home. A few days later my mom went to talk to the kid’s grandfather. She came back and told me that we couldn’t hang out anymore. She told me that he needed medication to keep him calm and that he had missed his dose that day. The situation wasn’t my fault. I never saw him again.
54. Entering The Red Zone
I’m a plumber. I went down to service the boiler in the basement, and the homeowner walked me through their “red room.” One wall had all the whips and spanking utensils, and another had all the chains, cuffs, and ball gags. There was a glass cabinet where one would expect to find fine china or expensive trinkets, but nope—it contained adult items of all shapes, sizes, and colors.
There were not one but two “intimate” swings hanging from the ceiling, a giant sawhorse with rings mounted to it, a medieval-looking rack, and a small cage. I mean, to each their own and all, but at least give a fella a heads up before you walk him through the set of Fifty Shades of Grey!
55. This Actually Sounds Kind Of Amazing
I would frequently go into homes in all conditions with buyers and sellers. I’ve seen people living in the most deplorable conditions and dealt with so many odd people. There was a really cool historic house listed in a good neighborhood. The guy was a hoarder, and he had torn off all the plaster and filled the walls with books. The books were in every room of the house. Floor to ceiling.
56. Proceed With Caution
I went to a house with a leak that seemed to be coming from a second-floor bedroom. I was then warned by the homeowner that the bedroom belonged to their son who was currently locked up and that they had not gone into the room because their son threatened to end them if they did. I opened the door just enough and took a peek inside only to see a string tied to the other side of the door.
As my eyes follow the string, I see that it leads to a piece. I disengaged the string from the door handle and went about doing my job. To this day, I don't know why I decided to proceed through that door cautiously, but I am glad I did.
57. No Laundry, No Exit
I worked in the IT department at school when I was on college staff. The other folks in the IT department would be called in to fix someone's network connection through wired Ethernet and occasionally come back with stories. There were usually just bongs and other illicit materials. But some rooms were truly horrifying. It turns out that some students not only don't do laundry, but enter and exit their rooms through the ground-floor window, meaning that the door is actually not navigable for the dirty clothes and other junk on the floor.
The department policy was that staff would not enter a student's room alone. More than once, the student who wanted their network connection fixed was glad to see the IT people. However, the student's girlfriend, who just woke up in their bed and may have been looking forward to a lie-in and/or wake-and-bake before morning classes, was somewhat surprised to see the IT people. The IT people were never warned that there would be a different person in the room. Not even with a scarf on the doorknob.
58. Ferret About It!
I was at a fourth grade classmate's house for a Girl Scout meeting and the house smelled really bad/strange, like a rundown pet store. I assumed maybe there were hamster cages somewhere or they had a few cats or something. But boy was I wrong. I went to go sit on the couch and what I thought was just part of the throw blankets tossed on the couch were loose ferrets.
30 loose ferrets, to be exact, and they were just chilling around the room.
59. That’s Horrible
I used to work in front line child protection. I’ve seen hoarder homes that were unsafe to enter; in one place, the laundry was the dog’s bathroom, and there was months-old dog poop everywhere, crank labs, and all sorts of stuff. One of the worst things I saw was a poop-smeared room with a regular baby crib that the parents had put a lid on, turning it into a cage. The child was five.
60. The Pig In The Room
I, an electrician, did a call where the family had a full-size, massively long pig, living in their house. He was just chilling in a room right off the living room. There was another call where the older couple had very anatomically correct drawings of themselves on all of the walls. That was so awkward.
61. Sad Reality
I initially thought it was awesome that there was no furniture at my best friend's house in middle school, just mattresses on the floor and one dining room table with chairs. Nothing else. In the 1980's, a toy called a disc launcher was popular, which would shoot out a spinning piece of plastic about the size of a nickel.
No furniture or really much of anything in the apartment meant we couldn't lose the discs. In reality, it was that my friend's mom had lost her life in an accidental hitting and his father was so depressed he had trouble caring for the family. They moved regularly and had no furniture.
62. A Home Museum
I am a social worker and I do home visits. I had to see a family I'd never met while covering for another social worker. I walk in and the entire house looks like an African history museum with masks, giant maps, and about 10 or 12 stuffed animals that the family told me they had ended themselves. There were full-body deceased animals everywhere. You couldn't turn without seeing some type of artifact.
63. Good Thing They Got Help
I’m a former pest control tech. I got sent to a house for stink bugs or something benign like that. When I walked into the kitchen (the first room I entered through the garage), I didn’t even have my shoe covers on yet, and I picked up a bed bug off the floor. I asked the residents if this was what they were seeing, and they confirmed that it was.
I decided to humor myself and go upstairs to the bedroom, where I found walls that seemed to be more bed bug than paint. They were even in the attic and basement. I came to find out that the people who called us were actually the homeowners’ son and daughter-in-law who lived out of state, and they hadn’t seen them in over a year; they only flew in because they hadn’t heard from them in a couple of days.
The mother had fallen down the basement stairs, and the father was bedridden. The mother was fine, no broken bones, just old and weak. They were also too prideful to ask for the help they desperately needed. Thankfully, their family could get them the help they needed, including making the home entirely functional from the first floor until they could move into a smaller home.
64. Thinning Them Down
Once, I carted off eight garbage bags filled with mostly foam take out containers from the cabinets of a client's kitchen, and also thinned down their receipts they kept to just the last year or two. They had about 10 years' worth! They also had dozens of Raid cans at their front door. I found out why soon! I was bitten all over my legs by fire ants!
65. Don’t Forget To Clean Up
I did residential HVAC for a few years, so I've seen a few hoarder houses. The worst was an older lady who had most rooms full of what seemed like garbage. At the end of the day, I was working on the thermostat and placed my screwdriver on a random pile because I needed both my hands for a second. I went to pick up my screwdriver and finish up.
Right next to it, was a bowl of used sanitary napkins. After, when I was leaving, the lady reminded me to vacuum. It wouldn't have bothered me if I had actually made a mess but I know I did not. I know this because I put down a drop cloth to avoid placing my tools in cat vomit and anything else that was on her disgusting floor.
66. And Those Are the Rules….
I went to my friend's house for the first time, as she always wanted to come to my house, not the other way around. However, she had never told me why. I was about to learn the truth the hard way. So, I got there, and after the first hour, it all goes downhill. The parents had strict rules about eating at the table. They proceeded to insult me about my weight to the point I nearly cried. After that, they continued to ask me questions about my race and family.
By the time night came, I found out they had a lockdown rule in their house. We weren't allowed out of the bedroom until morning. I didn't know that and ended up getting lectured the next morning. I also didn't know that I would be forced to attend their church in the morning before I could go home. That's how I figured out why she always wanted to stay at my house and not the other way around.
67. It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Clutter
Back when I worked for a moving company, there was a woman who wanted to make a donation to the rich old folks community. It turns out that she collects Christmas stuff. We go in, thinking it's maybe a few trinkets and such. Nope. There were several trees, large paintings, massive nutcrackers, and the works.
This woman had it all. At first, you think, “Okay, she's a little eccentric.” But, going past the foyer, you realize she lives in a three story house and literally everywhere you look there is Christmas. It turns out she had been collecting Christmas stuff since the 70s.
68. They Kept A Cool Head
I used to live in South Florida and worked in an apartment complex. One day we cleaned out this apartment after the tenants moved out. It wasn’t too bad as it was mostly clean, but the shocking part was finding a severed goat’s head in the fridge (on a platter, not just stuffed in there). It was skinned and everything.
It startled the heck out of me, and I wasn’t sure what to do. The supervisor said it was no big deal, and it was common among the Haitian population to use the whole head for a stew.
69. A True Hero
I work in the construction appraisal field. I do several interior inspections a week, and it’s common for the homeowner to forget certain sensitive items. I received a routine job to inspect a damaged roof with some interior water damage. I arrived at the house out in the country. The outside was very run down and hadn’t been kept well in years.
The majority of the roof was tarped, and any wood showing was soft and rotting. Here begins the bad part. I got out of my car to be greeted by two small kids; I’m awful at ages, but I’m assuming both were under the ages of 10–12. They were vibrant redheads with crystal blue eyes. Sadly, both siblings had sores covering their bodies.
Their lips were chapped and infected, and their mouths and noses had scabbed over from having runny noses. Both appeared to have pinkeye and very bad teeth. Very politely, they lead me to their home. Once at the door, I met their grandmother, who had bruises on both forearms. Once she opened the door, a horrible stench came from the house.
Because the woman was elderly and noticed my initial gag, I tried to be polite and went inside. Once inside, the scene was out of a horror movie. Black mold and dirt covered the house ceiling and walls. Four feet of food and debris from the kids covered the walls. The carpet was sticky and had a slight catch when I walked on it.
There were dishes piled up in the kitchen, with black trash bags full of garbage and food lined up along the walls. The whole house was swarming with flies, and in the kitchen, maggots owned the sinks. With the door closed behind me, the smell was almost unbearable. Trying to be polite, I asked if she was having septic or plumbing issues as well.
She said yes, but that nobody would help her. Out of curiosity, I went to look. The smell was coming from the basement/bedroom. It turned out the toilet had backflowed and covered the whole basement area, and from the look of it, it had been days. But I wasn’t ready for what I was about to see on my way back up to the main floor.
I saw that one of the bedroom doors that had initially been closed before was now open. A brief look inside showed a baby, who couldn’t have been more than a year old, sitting in a moldy kid chair while flies buzzed around his bald head. His mother was sitting on the floor and leaning against the bed with a pipe laying next to her, creating a brown mark on the carpet.
Sick to my stomach, I walked upstairs to get my bearings and figure out what to do. On my way out the front door, the older woman looked at me and said, “Help us.” Now I was like, holy smokes, what is going on! I asked the lady what she’d just said because I wasn’t all on earth at that moment. She began to bawl and said, “Help us!”
That time it clicked. I told her to go get the two older kids and sit in my truck. I snuck back in, grabbed the baby, and then also got into the truck. Fast forward. We called law enforcement and CPS while we hightailed it out of there. The elderly woman was being held against her will by her junky daughter and her pimp/dealer boyfriend.
While waiting on the officers, I called my boss, who got me in touch with the company’s team of lawyers about my involvement, blah, blah, blah. I hung up because I couldn’t deal with corporate stuff at that moment. The officers arrived and then proceeded the next four hours of waiting, interviewing, and working with them.
But there was a happy ending! Months later, I received a call with the good news that the woman, along with the help of the rest of her family, were raising the kids while the junky mother went to correctional facility for a very long time. I will never forget that day or those kids’ faces. The moral of the story: Don’t do substances.
70. Really Earning The Tips
I’m a DoorDash driver in my free time. I got one order for literally 20 two-liter bottles of Orange Fanta. I thought it was for a party, but no, it was for one guy. This guy looked really horrible. He was pale, sweating, and overall really unhealthy looking. He sat on the stairs and asked me to bring it into his house. I was very concerned about him, but it wasn't my place to say/do anything outside of what he hired me to do. I masked up and earned that $5 tip.
71. He Came With The Place
One day we left a party and a friend called us to stay at his house. The house was nice, big, and spacious. The boy said, "hey, do you want to see something weird?" and he took us to a room where they had memories and photos of a man. Then out of nowhere, he pulls out the skeleton of his uncle, who was the previous owner of the house.
72. A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words
I found a very large, colored-in black and white photograph in an ornate gilded frame in the attic. The photo showed a young child in a white lacy dress, wearing a cowboy hat and boots, standing on the steps of a city building with a pony. The building in the photo was clearly a style of architecture that isn’t found anywhere near where I live.
Also, the child was the ugliest child any of us had ever seen. Scary ugly. I wasn’t even envious about the pony—that kid was just so ugly. We hung the photo in a prominent spot, and would make up a story about the person/pony/photo, taking turns. We left the thing in the attic when we sold the house. Didn’t seem right to take it.
73. High Maintenance
I worked for 18 years as a cable/telephone service technician in a large metropolitan city. Once at a sketchy building at eight in the morning when it was -20 Celsius, I went out on the balcony to check an entry cable, and there’s a dude buck uncovered out there high as a kite looking at the sun. We were probably on at least the tenth floor, and it was so cold.
He didn’t notice me.
74. He Wasn’t Playing Around
The homeowner did this for the thrill of the shock, I think. I was 21ish, and he was a friend of a friend I was just meeting for the first time. He was a man in his mid-30s who—I came to find out—liked boys in their late teens and had every possible thing in his house to attract them: Every gaming system, large TVs, a speed boat, jet skis, you name it.
As we went through the house, I was getting creeped out a bit, and then he said he was going to show us his game room. I was a little confused as we had just looked at the room with the giant TV with the PlayStation and stuff. He led us down into the basement, and that's when my gut told me to get out. The basement was a full playroom: St. Andrew’s cross, stocks, swings, etc.
But the things I remember most were the three-foot-tall cone bolted to the floor and someone in a full gimp suit strapped to the wall. I noped the heck out of there. I enjoy a good dungeon, but this guy was extra creepy. I was expecting the door to close and trap us down there. Now I would have made sure the person on the wall was there consensually, but being 21, I ran for it.
75. Creepy Crawlies
The craziest thing I ever saw in a house was thousands of bed bugs. They were crawling all over the walls, the resident, and his motorized scooter. There's a reason some Home Health workers take an umbrella or large brimmed hat, think classical sombrero, into the home until they can assess for such issues. For those curious, I believe the home was eventually demolished.
76. Read The Room
When I worked as a housekeeper, there was this one Airbnb we would clean. In the office, there was a giant bookshelf full of books, but upon further inspection, we realized that they were literally all books about the Third Reich.
77. Hopefully, She Got Help
As a cable/telephone service technician, I’ve seen some horrors in the apartment of someone with extreme schizophrenia living in government housing. This disease tends to make people think that they are being monitored; so often, in a bout of extreme mania, someone with it will tear out all of the phone and cable wiring in their home, only to later realize that they still need it. So, then they would call for service repairs.
I had one lady I went back to a couple of times who had written on every square inch of her apartment walls—sentence fragments, different thoughts, and things that she seemed to write in different voices. She had cut a 1x1 foot hole in her wall around her phone jack and ripped all the wires out. I patched up what I could and assured her we wouldn’t bill her.
She also cornered me at one point and tried to tell me that it wasn’t her writing on the walls and that people would come at night and do it.
78. How Can People Live Like That?
While working as a carpet cleaner, I went to a couple of hoarder houses, including a place that was borderline animal-hoarding, but this one woman’s house always stuck out to me. She had two teenage daughters. Her house was very average, and it wasn’t in a terrible part of the city, though the city itself is notoriously nasty.
So we went in, and it was pretty bad. There was so much black dog hair that I thought their bright red carpet was a deep crimson red. I nearly had to peel the hair up in sheets. The daughters’ rooms were so full of clothes and stuff on the floor there was only a four-square-foot space I could actually get to. Eventually, I made it down to the ground level of the house, and I opened a door to inspect what needed cleaning.
It was the door to the garage, and it was wall to wall FULL of garbage bags stacked about five feet high. So I quickly shut that door and repressed it. I walked into the other room and went to move a chair—some style chairs are easiest to move if you reach under a cushion to grab the frame. Well, guess what? Surprise guys, there was a broken pipe.
So I just freaking pushed the chair over. Mind you; I was still ripping up the carpet hair in sheets at that point. I moved the couch, and it was a reclining couch with a steel frame, and those things are notorious for rusting. But that’s no big deal, and we had a chemical that could eat rust in seconds. I poured the chemical on the rust that sat around where the couch’s entire frame was on the carpet, but it didn’t dissolve.
Eventually, I caught a whiff of it. It was poop. It was dog poop. There was so much dog poop under that couch it was matted into the carpets. So, I eventually cleaned that up and put everything back so I could get the heck out. During all this, I half-filled a five-gallon bucket with wet hair (human and dog), which is the most I’ve personally seen. Wet hair doesn’t take up much space, so that was a lot.
79. Definitely Not Takeout Food
My childhood best friend grew up in an extremely messy house. He was one of about eight children. We were digging around his house for a VHS when it was 2001 and I was 12, when I found a styrofoam takeout container. Something hard was rattling around in it. I feared that it would be old dried-up food, but succumbed to my curiosity and proceeded to open the box. I instantly regretted it.
Inside was a small brown shriveled up snake-looking thing. I stared at it for a few moments trying to process what it was, when I heard my friend’s mother call out "Oh that's just my son’s umbilical cord!" I was completely shocked...especially because that particular child was already about three and a half years old at the time.
80. Down The Drain
My husband was renting a small two-bedroom apartment with his now ex-wife. Her sister came to stay with them for a while trying to get on her feet and get into school, and work. After a heavy storm, the landlord came to check on the apartment and went into the basement. It was completely flooded with several feet of water.
He said there was no way the storm did that and found that there was a burst pipe as well coming from the bathroom. As it turns out, the sister was flushing those wet wipes down the toilet and it finally overloaded it. They found her closet full with wet wipes, used. There were literally hundreds of them. She never showered apparently. She just wiped down with wipes and piled them in the closet or tried to flush them.
81. Bless All Home Care Workers
I used to do home health care, and I’d just go in and help people with the everyday things they couldn’t do because of their condition. I had this really sweet older lady with a bad case of psoriasis. Her floors had a layer of old skin covering nearly every square inch of the apartment. It was even in her dog’s water bowl.
I did my best to keep it clean, and I visited twice a week. Each time it was just as bad. I can still smell it if I think about it.
82. Some Places Should Require A HAZMAT Team
My coworker and I had to fix an abandoned crack house. The rug was pretty cool, and I thought we could save it until I lifted it up and saw there were literally thousands of used needles underneath, mostly uncapped too. Oddly, the same house had a perfect condition ping-pong table in it; everything else was stripped or destroyed, including tiles from the walls, but not the ol’ping-pong table.
I also won $20 at the same house by opening a sealed fridge that read: “Don’t open.” It stunk so bad that my coworker and I threw up in sink...bonding times, ya know? I spent the money on beers for us.
83. That’s Nasty
My dad works painting houses. The local rental agency hired him to reno a suite that had just evicted its tenants, and they paid him extra to clean it as well. There was an awful smell that he couldn’t figure out the source of until he finally started cleaning the kitchen on day two. That's when he found it. The evicted tenant had taken a poop in the dishwasher and ran a quick cycle before leaving—it was coating the whole interior.
84. That’s One Way To Clean It
About five years ago, I was at a friend’s apartment for the first time. He had just moved in and invited me and some other friends over. We were in the kitchen talking and having some drinks he made for us. The dishwasher was running on the side. After a while, it finished and the door opened up automatically, so we all saw what was in there.
A lot of cups, tableware and his toilet seat. There was an awkward moment of silence, and then finally somebody asked him about it. His answer was actually pretty logical, "Because it was dirty!"
85. He’s Uncovered and I’m Afraid
I was at a typical sleepover—movie, video games, popcorn. When it came time to go to bed, I went into the bathroom, changed into my pajama pants, and walked back in to find my friend already in his bed and smirking. I didn't think much of it, so I crawled into my sleeping bag and asked if he wanted to play some more video games. He threw open his blanket and I saw he was uncovered.
The kid flashed me. I was understandably stunned and I said something along the lines of, “Put some clothes on." He responded, "Nope, my house, my rules." I was really uncomfortable by now, and didn't want to sleep. He covered himself back up with his blankets and said he would put his clothes back on, which he did. I tried to shrug it off, and we played some more video games for a little bit, then turned off the lights and went to sleep.
Not too long after the lights went out, I heard him rustling around, then getting out of his bed. He says, "I'm uncovered again," laughs, and tries to lay on me. I shoved him off, and he kept trying to lay on me. A brief back and forth went on, and at this point, I'm pretty much yelling at him to leave me alone and go to sleep. I heard him stand up. I thought he was going to leave me alone now. I was wrong—what happened next was the worst by far.
I started to feel something splattering against my sleeping bag where my feet were. It didn't take long for me to figure out that he was relieving himself on me. I told him I was going home, and as I'm trying to get out of the sleeping bag, he body-slammed me. I was stunned. As he went to jump on me again, I kicked him in the stomach as hard as I could, and he went down crying.
I woke up his mom at around midnight and told her what happened. She went into the room to find her uncovered son on the floor crying and yelled at me to leave. I called my mom and waited for her on their front porch, as my friend's mom was going bananas when she saw the pee on the sleeping bag and ground.
86. Maybe She Was Just Feeling Extra Santamental
I once walked into an apartment that had Christmas decorations everywhere. They were all over the place in a one-bedroom apartment with a maybe 70-square-foot living room/kitchenette. This wasn’t anywhere near December; I’d delivered to her several times over the months, such as in February and July. She was an older obese woman living in what I kind of assumed was a retirement community.
I felt bad for her, if anything. It seemed like she was lonely, and she was a friendly enough person, but it still felt like “attack of the Santas” in there regardless.
87. Time For An Awkward Talk, Mom
I used to install tile floors. We were working this job at a very nice house, with great homeowners. They had a couple of younger boys running around the house. I would guess the boys were around the ages of four and five. There was another crew at the house installing carpet at the same time we were there. The workers had to remove the furniture in the bedrooms before installing the carpet.
They removed the top mattress from the parents’ bed and carried it to another room. Well, the homeowners failed to remember that they had something hidden between the two mattresses. So now there was a huge bright red “adult toy” sitting there out in the open. The best part was when one of the boys came into the room and saw it.
Not knowing what it was, he grabbed it and ran out of the room, running around the house looking for his parents to ask them what it was. He found his dad first, who told him to go ask his mother. So, the boy ran off, holding it above his head, yelling, “Mommy, Mommy, what is this?” Everyone could hear him and was watching at this point. We had never seen something so funny, and we could not help laughing.
88. Where To Begin...
I helped a friend move, who’d been living with his dad, who had mental health issues. The apartment had deteriorated into something that might qualify as a hoarder state. There were several layers of carpet with dog poop in between them, as apparently the dad’s solution whenever the pets made a mess on the carpet was to just go and get a roll of surplus carpet and roll it out over the top of everything.
This had happened a few times. The dad also thought he was a carpenter and had installed “built-ins” all over, but what this really meant was random bits of wood screwed into the drywall as haphazard shelves and cabinets. Apparently, he did it all with wood screws and a manual hand screw driver, but they were surprisingly difficult to take apart.
I had to buy a crowbar from a harbor freight. The bathroom toilet didn’t have the seat attached for some reason. There were several layers of doormats at the front door, and somehow the bottom ones had rotted. My friend was so embarrassed at the state of things, but it wasn’t his fault, as his dad was the one doing it.
His dad had issues that made it not fully his fault either, but everyone felt kind of bad. At one point, I asked if it was even worth doing just to get the deposit back, and my friend said, “The deposit is gone. We’re doing this so my dad and I don’t get sued.” We got through it, eventually. We even rented a truck to drive stuff to the dump.
89. Don’t Mock His Apartment—It’s Biodegrading
I’m a plumber. This guy’s apartment was mostly on the second floor, with a second entrance, den, and washroom on the first floor (the rest of the floor belonged to another apartment). Buddy decided he didn’t need the downstairs area, so he just used it as a compost pit—he literally just threw all his organic trash down the stairs.
The pile was like five feet tall and eight feet across.
90. Freud Would’ve Loved This House
There was this one house I will never forget. It was full of phalluses. There were pictures on the walls of phalluses. There were phallic statues, carvings, paintings, flags, tapestries, lamps, table legs, drawings, etc. The chairs and couches were all upholstered in phallic fabrics. Even the armrests on the chairs and couches were phallic-shaped, so if you put your arm on them, you would be grabbing the heads.
The two dudes that lived there were both artists, and they made all of it. It was the weirdest freaking thing I think I have ever seen.
91. A Family Photo Album To Remember
My good friend in high school’s parents were discussing putting in an alarm on their house once while I was over, but were balking at the price. I told them I would cable it for them, which made they very excited. The attic access was in the master bedroom closet so I had to go through there. And their closet had some skeletons.
When I went up into the attic, I found a bunch of pictures of my friend’s mom with a guy who was not her husband. I mean a bunch of pictures—and she was doing it all with this dude. My friend’s dad was permanently disabled and didn’t have great use of one side, so I’m guessing that’s why she thought that was a safe place to hide her dirty secret.
I never said anything to their family about it.
92. The All-Seeing Pie
Several years ago I was running pies for the Hut. We had a particularly nice house that I always seemed to get. It was a nice couple with three kids and a big house. They had money and always had large orders and tipped well. One day, I get routed to their address but I notice the order is very different than normal. It’s about double what they order and the name on the order is not the father’s name.
Interesting, so I take the order to their house. The house is literally bumping. Mom and dad’s car is nowhere in sight. I get their oldest daughter, roughly 15, to answer the door. Now mind you, I don’t care at all if the kids are having a good time, but she made an enemy of me that day. She proceeds to complain that I took forever in a condescending tone, make fun of my uniform, and stiff me on a $100+ order.
I didn’t say anything at the time, but I got my revenge. About two weeks later the house orders again. Normal order, normal name. And I magically get their order. When I arrive, her father is at the door and I can’t help myself. I ask him if they had a good time at the party. He’s clearly confused, so I remind him of the great party they had two weeks prior.
He sits and thinks for a minute. Then he hands me a freaking $50 tip and says, “Thank you very much, I’m sure we enjoyed the party a lot.” After he closes the door, all I hear is him yell “Brooooookk get your behind down here right now.” It was a jerk move sure, but nah, be nice to your driver—and tip them.
93. Anything Can Happen
I’d been having a really busy night, non-stop back and forth, without any time to even pause and go to the bathroom. I’d been so busy that I wasn’t even thinking about bathroom breaks. But we were also going through a bit of a heatwave in our area, so I’d been drinking copious amounts of water. All of a sudden as I was driving to this particular delivery, the urge to go hit me.
Like, things went from 0 to 60 in an instant. Thankfully I was close to the customer so could get this one over with quickly. Or so I thought. I pulled up to the house, and it was an area I’d delivered in before, so I could immediately see that something wasn’t right. All the lights were off in the house, not even the glow of a television or anything.
It was extra apparent because the streetlight closest to the door happened to be out of order. And on top of it all, the block was super quiet. This is a big university area, and obviously there aren’t many student renters in July, but there had to be at least one person, because someone ordered this pizza. Maybe they just liked sitting in the dark or they were out back in the yard, whatever.
I just didn’t want to get out of my car and knock on a quiet house in the middle of the night (around 9:30pm) without first checking that I had the correct address and the customer was inside. It was scorching that night, even after sundown. My car’s A/C is a joke, and the piping hot pizzas don’t help things much, so I have to try and open the car door as infrequently as possible to keep any cool air in.
I called the number the customer provided and the voice on the other end said, kind of brusquely and out of breath, “Yah?” I just tried to keep it clear and concise, “Hey, it’s your pizza out front but there doesn’t appear to be anybody home?” And the customer replied, still gasping for air, “Yah, I’m not home." I had to pee so badly by that point that I was much less patient than I’d otherwise be with a customer right out of the gate.
“Well, then we’re going to have to finish the order, because I’ve arrived in the stated delivery window and you were supposed to pay in cash, so, I don’t know what to tell you. Plan ahead next time.” I instantly regretted letting my bladder do the talking for me as the voice on the other end came through more clearly as a young, bubbly, and very distraught girl who couldn’t have been older than 20 or 25.
“Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry I was running down the street so I could barely hear you!” She cried, “I just switched you out of my Air Pods. Is that better? Sorry, I completely lost track of time at work, but I knew you were coming, that’s why I’m literally running home right now. Please don’t leave, I’m starving and I don’t have a car. Seriously, please don’t leave. Five minutes tops, ok?”
I know what it’s like to be hungry, and running late, and have no car but not live near any restaurants. Plus when I heard her voice I began to remember more specifically having delivered to this place a couple times before, and she’d always been perfectly nice. Now I felt bad for snapping at her. I tried to walk it back, while simultaneously looking out my window for potential spots to pee.
“No, no, my bad, I’m letting the heat get to me and it’s not your fault. No need to rush. See you when you get here.” I hung up and, while watching the street, was starting to think I was really out of luck. All the other houses had people in them, and were close together, so there were no clumps of trees or out of the way patches of land or anything.
Of course, I had just tossed my empty water bottle at the last delivery, because I’m an idiot. I had to resort to drastic measures. Finally, I decided it was escalating to the point of an emergency, and the safest bet was to use a bush in front of the woman’s house. She wasn’t home, after all. The streetlight was out so no one would see me.
The people who were home were inside. My car was parked across the street and we’re a small shop who don’t wear uniforms, so if someone did spot me, they’d have no way to connect me to my employer. Animals pee outside all the time, humans are animals...this is fine. I scurried over to the tallest bush in her front yard. She didn’t really have much of a yard, more just a walkway lined with bushes and flowers that ran adjacent to her front door.
The biggest cluster of bushes, the only one where I could be sure there would be no visible splatter on the side of the house, was about four feet from her door. I looked both ways, unzipped, and let fly. After the initial millisecond of relief, I noticed the sound was way off, more like urinating on something solid than something leafy. I started panicking. I was thinking I’d aimed wrong. But once I start, I can’t stop mid-stream, so I kept squinting into the darkness to see if maybe I was hitting a key rock or something and could just move a few inches over. Instead, all of a sudden, I heard a way more concerning noise. A deep voice exclaiming, “What the heck?” And before I could turn around, assuming I’d been caught by a neighbor, a man came leaping out of the bushes.
He blew by me, brushing my urine off him as did. He gob of pretty emphatically on the ground, so I think I might’ve beaned him right in the face. I didn’t see where he went after a few paces but, though this next part is kind of a blur, I do think I remember hearing a car screech out from a bit further away after a minute.
I’d gotten some night vision by that point so I was able to make out his height, build, and outfit, but only the most general details of each. I was in such shock that I didn’t even pull my pants up. I just stood there trying to figure out what had happened. The reality was so terrifying that my mind refused to accept it. Instead, I impulsively searched for a reasonable explanation that could make everything okay.
I thought, “Could these bushes lead to some backyard area and just looked like they were against the house? Could they have been obscuring an open window?” My inner voice was desperately screaming, “Bruh that man was wearing a hoodie in 90-degree weather. That was a bad man. You’re in a bad situation.” But the very idea that I was within inches of a guy who would be hiding in bushes at all, let alone in front of a young woman’s house at night, just wasn’t something I was ready to grapple with yet.
I was coping by not coping. My fight or flight response totally failed me at that point, because my dumb brain did the absolute last thing I should have done, and I approached the bushes to try and validate this “There must have been a good reason for a man in a hoodie to be behind these bushes in the middle of the night” theory. So I walked over to the side, turned on my phone flashlight, and tried to peer around the line of shrubbery.
Pro tip: As scary as things may look in the dark, seeing them with a single beam of your flashlight can sometimes make it even worse. That’s when I saw the bag. There was a tattered drawstring bag sitting behind the bushes, slightly splashed with pee. But I was in such a moronic daze from shock that I groped around for it thinking, “See? This is it, this will explain why he was back here.” Oh, it explained it.
Once I maneuvered it over and pulled it open, I saw a sharp tool, a roll of duct tape, and a bottle of pills. The delusions officially broke at that point and all the adrenaline, endorphins, and self-preservation instincts that had been suppressed kicked in ten times over. I became whatever the opposite of dazed is. More laser-focused than I have ever been in my life, with one singular goal: “Get back to my car.”
I dropped the bag, booked it across the street, got in my car, and slammed the pedal to the floor before the door was even all the way closed. I went as far as I could as fast as I could until I hit a red signal, then I pulled off to the side and realized I shouldn’t be driving anymore than necessary in the condition I was in. I pulled into the parking lot of a 24-hour drug store and took a breath.
I was finally calm and coherent enough to zip up. Then I formulated a plan of action. My first lucid thought was, “Who do I call first, the authorities or the girl whose house that was?” I thought about it for what couldn’t have really been more than 10 seconds, but felt like an hour, and decided “Ok. I am in my locked car with the engine running. If trouble starts, I can drive away. I know something’s up, she might not, and she needs to know not to keep walking in that direction.”
But as I was dialing her number, a more disturbing thought occurred to me. “What if there was no girl?” I thought I remembered delivering to that house before, but what if I was wrong? What if the girl on the phone was just a decoy to get me there to rob me, or worse? Every pizza guy on the planet has seen the Evil Genius documentary by now, so I thought, “She called me all out of breath. She wasn’t home. The whole thing was off, can’t risk it, I’ll start with the authorities.
I called 9-1-1. The operator was very helpful in keeping me calm, because I was a complete wreck by this point. He kept assuring me that someone would be there soon. I kept telling them they had to get there before the girl did, but I was trying to express three thoughts at once, and really damaging my own credibility by the end of it.
It came out more as: “You’ve got to save this girl because he wasn’t after me I was just delivering a pizza. Unless they were after me, in which case there might not be a girl, but I talked to one on the phone, so then you should find that girl because they used her to lure me there. But if she’s real she doesn’t know about the guy, who was also real, and there could be more guys if there’s actually a girl, and you know what? Even if there isn’t a girl there might actually be more guys. I only checked one part of the bushes so I don’t actually know. But we’ll know which guy is the one I saw because I peed all over him, you know. I didn’t mean to, this was back when I thought the girl was real but not home, but she might be real so you really need to find her if she is because the guy was real—”
Finally they basically just asked me to stop talking and stay on the line. But that was when I saw an incoming call from the customer. I couldn’t answer it without disrupting my 9-1-1, so I just ignored it. My problems just got worse. Then she sent me this text like, “Hey I’m here, don’t see you?” I told 9-1-1 she was there and they said officers were only minutes away.
But who knows how long that meant? Especially after I’d given such a scattered account of the events in my panic. I just felt overwhelmed with guilt. Because my rational mind said the odds of her being a decoy girl for some large scam targeting pizza guys were low and the odds of her being the intended victim of a predator were high.
So I put my 9-1-1 call on mute (where I can hear them but they can’t hear me) and turned back, heart absolutely pounding out of my chest. Then I took 9-1-1 off mute and told them I had returned to look for the girl. They weren’t happy about that, but I saw her meandering past the parked cars in the street looking to see if one was mine, and I waved her down, flashing my brights.
She bounced on over to the window of my car, happy-go-lucky. I figured that was a good sign that she wasn’t in on whatever this was. But I was just so scared to be back in the general area and to not know what had just happened or what was going to happen. I kept whispering “Get in. Get in!” And she was like, “Get it? Huh? Oh! You want me to get the pizza from the back?”
I didn’t want to make the same mistake with her that I had made with 9-1-1, so instead of trying to tell the whole story, I stuck to the bare basic facts. “There was a man in your bushes. I’m on the phone with the authorities. I don’t know where he is right now. Please get in the car so we can lock the doors.” I was barely able to get even those sentences out, and I was shaking like I’d had 10 cups of black coffee.
I held up my phone with 9-1-1 on the call screen to verify it for her. I thought that was why she got in the car with no further explanation, but it turns out that wasn’t entirely it. “You still there? Is she with you? Are you safe? Is anyone else there?” 9-1-1 kept checking in, not knowing who the third party I was talking to was. I reassured them, and we drove, more cautiously this time, to a location 9-1-1 instructed us to wait at to speak with officers after they cleared the area.
I didn’t actually have to do much after that. The officers came pretty soon after, a car met us, I gave a statement telling them everything I observed, and she went to go speak to more officers in more detail than they needed me for. It turns out the reason she got right into a strange pizza guy’s car without probing any deeper into my story is because she knew who the man was right away from my description.
She had an ex-boyfriend who was apparently psychotic enough that he immediately came to mind from hearing “There’s a guy in your bushes.” She later called us to thank me and insist on leaving a huge tip. I wasn’t there when the call came in so the kid who answered didn’t know to refuse the money. But the manager already promised the next time we see her we can load her up with enough “one free pie” cards to last a lifetime.
Easily the scariest thing that has ever happened to me, on the job or off. I don’t get the chance to tell the story much, because I try to avoid sharing it with anyone who could possibly know the girl or know of the event. But I’m still not the same since. Even though I know he didn’t even have anything to do with me directly, this truly shook me to my core. Be safe out there guys. Anything can happen.
94. He’s Not Bothering Anyone
Back in the 90s, a family friend's dog had passed. I ended up going over a few days later to play basketball, and the dog was laying in its usual spot, in a small bed near the TV in the living room. I said, "oh, I thought spot passed," and he said, "he did." That's when it all clicked into place. The gears started turning and the horror of it all became crystal clear.
Turns out, they left the deceased dog just laying there and they were gonna bury it that weekend when the sister came home from college. But in the meantime, they just left it laying there. It was an emaciated old chihuahua, so it's not like it was a gassy, swollen, stinking mess. More like a tiny little dog mummy, all dried out. But still, who does that?
95. Not A Normal Thing To Share
When I was a kid, my friend's mom used to use the toilet with the bathroom door open. Number one or number two, the door would be wide open and we could just go and have a chat like it was normal. Another time, I stayed at their house and the following morning, I came out of the bathroom after brushing my teeth and washing my face.
The parents saw me and asked, "have you washed your bum?" I was a bit confused, as it's not a normal thing to ask a guest. Then they said, "the flannel is there for you to wash your bum." So yeah, this family had a bum flannel that they all used to wash their holes with and then expected me to use it.
96. Breach Of Privacy
I used to be a math tutor for high school kids back when I was in university. I was teaching this one 15-year-old kid, Chris, who had a 20-year-old sister who still lived at home. I was going over a geometry problem with him one day when his father started screaming in the living room, calling for the daughter to come out. They had an epic fight, with the father calling her every name in the book.
Chris and I were cowering in his room trying to figure out what was happening. Later on, we found out what really happened and our jaws dropped. Turns out, his sister had cheated on her ex-boyfriend and he found out a few months after the break-up. Instead of being the bigger man, her ex decided to mail them all the intimate pictures he had amassed of her during their time together.
He also sent a note confirming that he had found out about the cheating. Usually, our lessons last one hour, but I ended up staying three hours that time because the fight lasted so long. I ended up sneaking out because I didn't want to trouble them about paying me that time. I mean, they already had enough issues.
97. That Would Make For A Shallow Gene Pool
I used to be a pool guy, so I used to go into people’s backyards to clean their pools. Once, it was a four-day week due to a holiday, so I was cramming five days of work into a four-day week. It was a hot summer day, and I walked into the backyard of this house. As I made my way through both gates, I witnessed an odd sight.
I saw two absolutely uncovered kids, maybe around 14 or 15 years old, cuddled on a poolside recliner. I looked at them, and they looked at me. I immediately turned around, and they ran inside. I’ve seen the owners all the time, but I’ve never seen those kids before. The next week I went back, and the wife was outside, so we started chit-chatting. That's when I learned the chilling truth.
I asked her if she’d had any visitors recently, and she said no. I let her know that I saw some kids in her backyard, and she cut me off. She said, “Yeah, I’m surprised you haven’t met them, lemme introduce you.” The two kids were brother and sister. They canceled their service within two months.
98. Me And My Big Mouth
This happened a couple of weeks ago. So I sometimes drive for rideshare companies to make extra cash and keep me off of the couch. I live in a touristy area that booms during summer months and vacation rental homes are common. So common that I sometimes do pick-ups and drop-offs at the same homes for different people week to week and family/friend groups of people renting the homes are the norm.
One particular day, I dropped a guy off at a beautiful home near the beach that I had just picked a guy up from just an hour or two prior. So as we arrive I mention this to the rider: “Hey, I just picked one of your buddies up from here about an hour ago.” Rider: “No, must be the wrong house.” Me: “Nope, he walked right out of that side door. I dropped him off at a bar. His girlfriend is still in there though, she stayed behind.”
I had seen her kiss him goodbye at the door but didn't mention this to the rider. “You guys having a vacation?” Rider: “This is a family-owned home, it's been in my family for years and we don't rent it out. Nobody lives here but my wife and I and I've been in New York for work for the past four days.” Awkward silence as we both come to the realization.
He got out and I drove away, scolding myself for having such a big mouth.
99. Feeding Time
I have worked for some of the richest people in Maryland and the one thing that stands out more than others is this doctor I worked for in Montgomery County, one of the most affluent zip codes in America.
This guy owned a lot of offices around the DC area, employing tons of employees and associate doctors, etc. He was really wealthy. He had a place with a huge garage full of exorbitantly expensive cars like Ferraris, an art collection, a booze cellar—the works. I used to do IT work for his medical practice and managed all the servers, etc., and occasionally went to their house because I was the lead admin.
Once, I was working in his house and was walking around upstairs where the bedrooms were when I came across the most off-putting sight. What I see is that this guy was lying in bed being fed by an assistant. I mean, he was literally lying in the bed while someone, completely platonically, hand-fed him, and not something like grapes but a regular meal. It was strange, to say the least.
Imagine someone feeding you a full meal with things like a steak and spoons of soup, salad, etc. and you never use your hands. It was like an adult being fed like a baby. I've never seen anything like that before and that was what popped into my mind, like a dictator or something who demands to be treated like a literal king. Keep in mind this was a man in his 50s who was in fine physical shape and didn't need a caregiver. It was just pure opulence.