Surprised man in house
Dabl At Home Dec 2020
Presented By
Dabl at Home

10 Strange Discoveries People Made In Their New Homes

People took to the internet to share what happened when they got a lot more than they bargained for when they moved into their new homes.

Recently, a Missouri house has gone viral for the second time for having nine large jail cells just casually in its basement. The home was recently renovated and looks like a nice family residence on the upper levels. There is nothing odd about the house until you go through what looks like a door to the pantry in the kitchen. But instead of food storage, it leads to nine prison cells with operatIonal cell lock doors and working toilets. The home regained popularity after another house in Ohio went viral in June of 2022 after the real estate agent failed to mention it also has a jail cell hidden inside when it was listed for sale. 

This got us thinking about what other strange finds homeowners must have made while house hunting or after they moved into their new residences. And of course, the internet did not disappoint. After finding four razor blades and a strange drawing crammed behind a window trim in his new home, a Redditor who goes by the name of mcmonkey819 created a forum to ask: “Homeowners, what's the strangest discovery you've made in your new home?” While not all discoveries were as extreme as jail cells, they were certainly big enough to leave us scratching our heads. These were our ten favorite responses. 

1.) “My building has a floor that's not on the elevator's panel. You have to hold down 'L' and press 'B' two times, and it will go down to a floor below the basement. The door won't open, however, and the elevator will go directly back to L after 5 seconds.” - Deleted 

This apartment building sounds like something that should be in The Twilight Zone or Disney’s Tower of Terror. We wish the user would have elaborated on if there were stairs available to access that floor cause we can’t help but wonder what is on it. Maybe another jail cell? 

2.) “I rented an old bungalow home in Florida once, and I found out the bathroom floor was apparently being held up by a stick. I could see it under the house. I lived in fear that one night I would be [using the bathroom] in the dark, and the floor would fall out from under me.” - BlorfMonger

Well, that definitely doesn’t seem up to code! We would advise this tenant to check his lease because the contract likely includes a clause that requires the landlord to provide safe living conditions. The tenant might have been able to argue that this bathroom setup was in breach of the lease to force the landlord to fix it! 

3.) “When we ripped out the old yucky paneling in the staircase, we discovered what appeared to be a door that was sealed up. My dad (who was helping me, and by helping, I mean he was doing the majority of it and I was uselessly piddling) seemed to think that it used to be a door to the outside, but then they added on the kitchen and sealed it off/covered it with ugly paneling. MY theory was that there was a body back there or [something], but I couldn't convince him to open it up. We covered it back up with drywall and it's still there.” - Nayalith

Depending on what’s behind that door, this sounds like the beginning of a horror film. We don’t know how this homeowner and father duo were able to resist the curiosity to find out! How could you not at least look before you made it inaccessible again? We’d be up all night letting our imaginations run wild with possible scenarios. 

4.) “I've been planning to troll the next owners of my house for a while now. While doing renovations I've hidden a broken iPod nano in a nonfunctioning electrical socket box, a crudely drawn crayon treasure map in the wall behind the living room, and a nonsensical secret coded message on the subfloor underneath the carpet.” - andygunit

While we don’t necessarily love the idea of pranking other people, we hadn’t yet thought of the theory that maybe some of these weird discoveries were intentionally left to bamboozle the new residents. If that’s the case, at least you know your house isn’t haunted by a ghost and your finds are harmless? We’ll be keeping an eye on the internet to see if whoever moves into this Reddit User’s house ever comes forward to share their experience. 

5.) “32-year-old junk food (1 package of half-eaten Twinkies, 1 package of unopened ding dongs) in the wall between the master bedroom and master bath shower stall. Still edible. I put it in my freezer, then listed it on eBay with a 50% donation to Holt International Children's Services. The final auction price with shipping was about $125. The winner forbade shipping.” - wil_dogg

Wow! There is a lot to unpack in this post. First, how did he know that the junk food was 32 years old and how did he even find it? Next, we can’t decide if it’s amazing that he managed to sell the ancient treats for over $100 on eBay or to question why his first instinct was to go on eBay in the first place. We also found it kind of funny that after 32 years of somehow staying fresh in a wall, this user still felt it was important to immediately put his finds in the freezer to preserve them. 

6.) “Parents moved into a house after never viewing it (big, dumb, stupid mistake). Previous owners took everything from the tiles on the wall to the light bulbs but that's not the story. They walked into the kitchen and my mother nearly killed herself. Why? They had dug a 2 x 2 foot hole bang in the middle of the room and covered it back up with the lino. Plus they scribbled their names on every wall in huge letters.” - White_choc_chip

So…there has to be more to this story. We get the feeling the previous owners weren’t moving out by choice. Regardless, we think there are some lessons to be learned here. Namely, don’t buy a house without seeing it in person, and always watch your step! We hope these homeowners were able to make all the necessary repairs and renovations and are now happy and healthy living in their house. 

7.) “Not my house, but one my cousin lived in. Her boyfriend had bought the place, and they were happily going about fixing it up. It was on a bit of hillside, and the back of the house had an open basement-type thing going on. Well, one day they see a guy with dwarfism hanging in their backyard. The previous owners apparently forgot to mention there was a mini-suite in the open basement that they were 'renting' to the little person. He had a tiny bed, and his own toilet down there!” - thangle

It’s not unusual to find stuff left behind by a home’s previous residents, but you certainly don’t expect to find another person still living on the property. We can’t help but wonder if the other man was aware that the property had been sold, or if this was some big scheme so he didn’t need to move and the original homeowners could keep cashing in on his rent. In a follow-up post, the Redditor explained that the man was living there for a couple of months before he was discovered by the new homeowners. He was promptly asked to leave. 

8.) “I ripped up the carpeting and found a massive star painting on our bedroom floor. It made me feel like the previous owner was having a seance in our room. Also, the stairs had Celtic-looking stenciling on them. It was really bizarre.” - koltran

It certainly seems like the previous homeowners had some unusual hobbies or beliefs. We haven’t seen pictures, but we can’t help but wonder if this was a heptagram (7-point star) or a pentagram (5-point star). While some people associate these symbols with the occult or dark magic, this homeowner shouldn’t worry too much because they have positive meanings, too! The heptagram can be used to symbolize creation or peace, while the pentagram is meant to be a sign of life and connections.

9.) “My house was built in 1904. When re-doing the basement, we discovered a weird sliding panel with accompanying shelf space behind the wall, which looked a bit like a bar and faced where the driveway used to be... we did some research and discovered that previous homeowners got into trouble for selling moonshine during prohibition.” - MissSamlersPlanet 

This discovery is more historic and awesome than it is strange. If we were the homeowners, we would use the basement bar for entertaining and make sure it was always stocked with a good bottle of whiskey. At the very least, it would certainly be a conversation starter when you had guests over. 

And last but not least… 

10.) “We found radioactive waste in our home. There was a bunch of stuff left in the basement from not the previous owners, but the ones before that. I found a box under the stairs that was absolutely covered in dust. I opened the box and found four lead cylinders inside. I (foolishly) took one out and noticed that there was a lid that just seemed to lift off. I peeked inside and didn't see anything so I placed it back in the box. I then took a cloth and wiped the sides of the box and was promptly greeted with one of those radioactive stickers.

I ended up calling the fire department (smallish town) and they came out in their hazmat suits and brought a Geiger counter. They proceeded to go downstairs and I watched them pop the top on one of the cylinders. The Geiger counter started to jump all over the place. They quickly put the cap back on and told me that I needed to take it outside and they gave me a number to call. I was thinking ‘wait... you are in hazmat gear and you want me to take it outside?’.

They left me with my radioactive waste and I placed the box in a metal can and took it outside. I called the number in the morning and the state sent someone over to take a look. It turned out to be a radioactive dye of some sort. It wasn't dangerous... but it freaked me and my (pregnant) wife out. They checked the house over with a more sensitive Geiger counter and didn't find anything else out.

TLDR: Found radioactive medical dye in the basement that a previous homeowner had left behind. Now I'm bald and have superpowers.” - sovietferret

We saved the longest and arguably the most eventful story for last! We would expect to find radioactive waste in places like nuclear reactors, fuel processing plants, hospitals, and research facilities, but certainly not in your typical family home. Apparently, the lesson to be learned is to expect the unexpected and call authorities before you touch anything that could potentially contain radioactive waste? This was a rather wild tale, but thankfully it seems like everything turned out just fine for this homeowner and his family. 

Did you discover anything weird or unexpected when you moved into your new home? Let us know on social media! 

Learn more tips and tricks for buying or selling homes at the Dabl Real Estate Hub

Get more great inspiration and ideas for your home on Dabl! Check our Dabl TV schedule and find out where to watch Dabl TV.