This story isn’t totally grim, however. It turns out, the previous owner of the house made false teeth. Though, it’s still unclear why hundreds of them were thrown in the crawl space.
Close Encounters of the Weird Humankind
Our seasoned AHIT instructors are all successful home inspectors who have really seen everything. In the process, they’ve learned how to work with the strangest of clients and in rather odd circumstances. From fighting divorcees to rude customers, and a spooky clown encounter—here are a few stories of weird inspector-client relations.
The Husband Who Ghosted His Wife
In one of his first inspections as a new home inspector, AHIT Instructor Chris Chirafisi found himself in the middle of a lovers’ quarrel…
During my first year of home inspecting, I inspected a $500,000 lake house for a young couple. Throughout the inspection, the couple seemed to get along well and there was nothing unusual to note. At the end of the inspection, as I was discussing the inspection report with the couple, the husband says to the wife: “I hope you enjoy your new lake house because it’s all yours!”
His wife responded: “We’ll have a great summer here!”
Her husband replied: “No, you didn’t hear me. This is YOUR lake house. I want you to move out of our house because I want a divorce!”
I thought I was getting ‘Punked,’ but nope. It wasn’t a joke. The wife literally dove over the table onto the husband, and I had to break up the fight. It’s the absolute craziest thing I have experienced on a home inspection in almost 25 years.
Beware of the Irate Seller
There’s never a dull moment in home inspection for AHIT Instructor Steve O’Donnell. That’s in part because of the colorful characters he’s come across in his over 4,000 home inspections…
I had a new employee training with me for an inspection. The house was a very nice upscale home in a high-rent district. We went about the inspection as normal. The buyer, a few friends, and their real estate agent were present. During the inspection, we ran across a door that was locked and asked the agent if there was a key available. The buyer chimed in and said, “I know where it is,” which was weird. The agent opened the door, and it was just a storage room with nothing special to inspect. There were 2 carbon-fiber ($5,000) bicycles in the closet. We took a peek at the room and moved on with the inspection while the agent, the buyer, and the friends looked more closely at the bikes.
The next day we retrieved our voicemails from overnight and we got one heck of a message from the seller of the house. She said we left the storage room with their expensive bikes unlocked, left footprints all over their white tile, and left all of the toilet seats up! She was completely irate on the voicemail. I called the agent, and he said not to worry about it because “she was a bit wacky” and to let it go. And so, we did.
Fast-forward a couple of weeks and I’m now doing a new construction home inspection for a new real estate agent and his clients. When I was almost finished, the buyers showed up for the review of the inspection report. I was speaking with the husband and asked where they were moving from, local or out of state? He said they lived just around the corner on Marshall Street in the house I then realized was the one with the bicycles.
I thanked him for using us for his inspection and asked why he decided to go with us. He said: “You did such a great job for the buyers of the house we just sold, we thought we’d use you as well.” His wife was present for the inspection and never looked me in the eyes the entire time she was there. I think she was embarrassed because of the horrible voicemail she left us.
Things You Stumble Upon in the Dark
Seasoned AHIT Instructor John Coleman shares this field training tale about things you may find while inspecting in the dark…
As a longtime instructor with AHIT, we’ve had our fair share of challenging homes to inspect. Whether a home is extremely cluttered or in poor condition, we have always managed to create a learning environment.
As fate would have it, we had scheduled a field training exercise on Halloween. Our hosts, homeowners who had worked with us before, were both relaxing in the family room when we arrived. They explained that the wall switch at the top of the basement stairs was not functioning. We would need to walk down the stairs in the dark and “screw in the lightbulb” to light up the basement.
A couple of our AHIT students traveled carefully down the basement stairs. When they turned the corner, they let out a shriek suitable for a “Halloween House of Horrors.”
When we arrived downstairs, we saw that the homeowners had set up a 6-foot “scary clown” in the dark.
The couple laughed and laughed while our two students were busy trying to gather their wits and pretend that they didn’t shriek in horror.
Home Inspection Nightmares from the Trenches
There is no shortage of freaky tales around the wider home inspection industry. These stories involve houses with creepy pasts, vicious animals out for blood, and shocking structural damage (that could have been avoided).
A House with a Murderous Past
In 2020, InspectorPro hosted a spooky home inspection story contest. The winning story came from a California-based home inspector. It involved a disturbed individual with an axe to grind—literally! Here’s an excerpt:
I was asked to inspect a home as a favor to some relatives. I soon discovered something interesting about the previous tenants: The son had tried to murder his parents with an ax, burn the house to the ground, and die by suicide. And he was missing…
Squatters, Creepy Crawlers, and Dog Bites – Oh My!
CandysDirt.com, a real estate news site that covers the Dallas Metro and North Texas areas, maintains a regular blog series called “Upon Closer Inspection.” The series reports on Dallas-area home inspections gone wrong—covering everything from unexpected encounters with squatters, “Cujo”-like dogs, and even more angry divorcees.
Shocking Discoveries When Buyers Waived Their Home Inspections
In 2021 and into early 2022, a record number of homebuyers waived home inspections ahead of their home purchases. This was largely in effort to snag winning offers in the competitive market. Many of these homebuyers went on to have their homes inspected after closing. But, as you can imagine, this set off a flurry of shocking discoveries, ones that likely had the buyers thinking twice about waiving home inspections again.
These hair-raising tales involve a basketball-sized hole in a roof, cracking foundations, creepy insect infestations, and more.
Home Inspection Training Doesn’t Have to Be Scary
While you may come across interesting (and possibly unnerving) things during your home inspection career, becoming a home inspector doesn’t have to be scary. AHIT isn’t the school you remember! We offer engaging online classes, live classroom courses with expert (and personable) instructors, and invaluable field training that prepares you for success from day one. Learn about home inspection training in your state and enroll today.
Ashley Roe is a Content Specialist with AHIT and The CE Shop. She writes regularly about home inspection and appraisal. With a reporter's eye and a passion for learning, Ashley stays current on what's happening within each industry. Her goal is to create engaging, relevant, and useful content that both informs and inspires readers.