Sure, some tenets may seem normal at first. But then, you see what they leave behind after they move out. These landlords share the worst thing they walked in on after a tenet left their property. From snakes to time capsules, these tenets will definitely go down in infamy.

Farmhouse Girl
Farmhouse Girl

"I rented our small farmhouse to a ‘contractor’ of Tattletails. Single, looked well-kept, wanted to get out of the big city. My fault, I did not do a background check.

The house was immaculate with clean everything, 1-year-old carpet, new paint job and clean windows. I also made the mistake of not inspecting periodically. She ended up getting married and said she was going on vacation for a week.

The farmhouse was locked up, no windows open and AC off in the heat of summer. I messaged I was going to open an upstairs window for ventilation. I went in, ran upstairs not looking at anything, opened the window and went back out the front door. I felt like I walked through spider webs, but ok, she’s been gone almost a week. We get a message she’ll be gone 2 weeks, then a month… My husband said she wasn’t coming back and go take a look. I notified I was going in again. The spider web feeling came again, a lot! It was very dark with the blackout curtains on the windows, the stench of cat urine burned my eyes, went and looked in kitchen cupboards to find hundreds if not thousands of German roaches! The food in the refrigerator had roaches on it! I looked down and found the feeling of spider webs were a bazillion fleas!

The ‘contractor’ had moved most of her belonging out, with her mattress in the middle of the bedroom floor and a 4? x 12? closet filled with junk! Pee pads hung on the walls, with cat pee puddles on the floor.

We hired help to move everything left into a shed. Many roaches scurried from under the mattress. We ripped out every bit of carpet throughout the home.

The 'contractor' said she was coming back for her belongings, it was impossible to have all those bugs as she bug bombed before she left. Pictures wouldn’t do what I saw justice. Four months later, I was confident all bugs were gone. New tenant saw one once.

I can’t believe she had the nerve to ask twice for a rental referral."

Dog House
Dog House

"Well years ago I rented a home to the housing department of the local Air Force Base, I thought that it was a safe way to do it because the base paid the rent on time directly to my account and their persons basically lived in the house for as long as they were posted to that base.

Everything was going just great, till the neighbor who lived next to my property called me up and said that I should do an inspection of the property, I asked him why, and he just said, that he did not wish to say more except that I should do an inspection.

So, a week later I stopped by to drop off a letter saying I needed to do a property inspection we are required by law to give 30 days in this state. As I walked by the front window - the curtain was pulled down and about 10 dogs ran to the window barking. Now, there is a clause in the rental agreement, absolutely NO PETS allowed, not even a hamster. From what I could see through the window the inside of the house looked like a trash heap. Stuff torn and scattered everywhere and towards the side of the living room a triple stack of plastic dog kennels lined the walls.

I was in shock, I went back home called my lawyer and told him what I saw, well according to local laws I can do an emergency inspection he said, but if I do, I need to have a representative of the base and him as a lawyer present and get a court order.

So we did the paperwork and two days later - the emergency inspection took place, We made entry with the spare key that I kept and animal control and a police officer came as well because we suspected they were running an illegal puppy mill from my house.

That is exactly what was happening, 28 dogs were taken by animal control, The cabinets and doors were chewed up, there were holes in the sheet-rock where the dogs chewed their way in, the carpets were caked with urine and dried feces, the house smelled like garbage, in the hallways the carpets had been torn from the floor by the dogs and shredded. The window sills were chewed and scratched by their claws, the curtains were shredded. We could not even breathe inside.

Well the representative from the base was in shock, and very apologetic. Long story short, the Air Force Base took responsibility for the damage, the airman was disciplined they said and was banned from living off base, the municipality sued him for running a kennel illegally in city limits, he lost all the dogs, the base had contractors come in and completely demolish the inside of the home and rebuilt it, and they paid me for the 6 months that it took to do it. So I got a new interior, and I decided I had had it with renting. I just sold the property after that."

Dump To Dream Home
Dump To Dream Home

"Wasn't my property but another owner I was working with. Bought a house in for closure, sight unseen. The tenant had to be removed by the sheriff after literally years back and forth with the bank. The person had lived in the house for 20 years. I went with him to assess the property. Walking up I could smell it. Heck, I could smell it as soon as I got out. We grabbed bandana for our face and headed off. As soon as he opened the door, I was positive, without a doubt we were going to find a dead body. I told 'Mike' as much and he went white.

He stepped in and immediately went blowing by me and started wretching. I had a bit better stomach, and I knew if we didn't get some air circulation we might as well just strike a match. So I went in and straight back for the kitchen and the patio door. I made it to the tile at least before I lost my dinner. Not that it mattered much. And clawed my way to the door to get out. Finally, got it open and continued losing my lunch outside.

Calls were made, discussions were had about what to do, heavily leaning towards bulldozer but settling on some serious respirators and tyvek suits, so we could at least see what was in there.

Dawned the suits, respirators on, the neighbors on the lawns in lawn chairs like we were going off to some alien world, and off we went. It was clear the tenant had been a hoarder. Everything was piled on top of piles of furniture and the cockroaches. Dear God, the cockroaches were everywhere. Dead. Alive. I gag writing this just thinking about it. But the smell was worse. It wasn't a dead body. At least not human. But rats. I kid a lot, but I am not joking in the least when that rat looked at my size 12 steel toe work boot and laughed. I thought it was a cat. Or a dog. Nope. It was right then that I knew, I was outmatched, on his terf. I backed up, noped out, and left my buddy with his new nightmare home and it's tenants.

He spent 120000 on that place. It's beautiful now. I asked him why he didn't burn it or doze it. He said after the hazmat teams cleared it, he was 60000 in the hole on top of the initial purchase price of 75000. He said at that point he would never recoup his money so he made it into dream home that he could be happy in."

Excuse After Excuse
Excuse After Excuse

"In 2006, we purchased an investment property and rented it to a lovely family…so we thought!

The home was brand new, 4 bd, 2 bath. We handed over the keys to this family. The lady cried as she thanked us for choosing her family to live there. She promised to care for it as her own. Little did we know those words meant nothing! She paid her rent on time every month for the first year but then the nightmare started.

On the 13th month I stopped receiving the rent on time with a million excuses on why it was late and sad stories. I put up with that for 4 months but couldn't anymore as each month the rent was being paid later and later to where she was almost a whole month behind on her rent. I told her that if in 30 days she wasn't caught up, I would be giving her a 30 day notice to move out. She begged for 60 days and assured me she would catch up and i would have no problems with her anymore. I was skeptical but wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt. So I agreed.

She never caught up and was almost impossible to get a hold of. The 60 days were up so I decided to personally give her the move out notice. The home was a few hrs away from where I lived so I had to wait for the following weekend to go because of work. We drove over the following Saturday to find the home empty and completely destroyed. We were shocked, angry, confused on how someone could do this. In a period of 1.5 yrs, the brand new home was turned into a completely destroyed house.

The kitchen and bathroom cabinets were broken off the hinges. The toilets had stains as if they had never been cleaned. The carpet had burnt spots and was no longer a light beige color but now brown. There were broken tiles in the kitchen and the entire home needed to be repainted. It was infested with garbage, mice and roaches!!! There were a couple of holes on the walls and one of the bedrooms had a broken window.

The kitchen appliances where stained. I wanted to cry! I told my husband I felt like just walking away from the property and never dealing with it again but of course we didn't want to damage our credit. So we did what we could and hired a group of handymen to do the rest. We bought new toilets, a new stove, replaced the tile, replaced the carpet in all but 2 bedrooms, had the entire interior painted. Little by little, with patience, a lot of hard work and a good chunk of money the home was left looking real nice ready to rent again.

I wish we would have just walked away like I had previously thought of since we ended up loosing the home anyways. While we did rent it to a good family that took really good care of it, the economy crashed and the home lost so much value that it just wasn't worth keeping anymore.

We tried shortselling it to the family that was renting it but the mortgage bank made it so difficult, it became impossible. It ended up going into foreclosure. Our credit was ruined, we lost so much but I was happy the nightmare was over. Our credit has recovered and we've had the opportunity to purchase another investment property but we said “no, thanks!” My sanity is not worth it…hahaha. We're happy just as we are and thankfully live a peaceful life."

They Were Too Late
They Were Too Late

"1987 we owned some property that was rented out.

The problem was the tenants never really paid for a single month, so after waiting the amount of time, taking them to court, paying for a bailiff, and any other eviction process, and charges, they were evicted.

The house was in bad shape as they were urinating in the corners of the rooms, light fixtures, and ceiling fans were literally ripped out from the ceiling.

After we left that night my stepfather began to worry and decided to go back to the house in case they decided to come back and do some damage.

We were too late, all the water on all 3 levels were turned on full blast, the basement, and first floor was flooded, the walls were covered with dog excrement.

After spending 3 months fixing, and thousands of dollars repairing the house so it could be rented, we decided that we were going to take the loss, it honestly wasn't worth going through all the work again.

We never became property owners, or landlords again."

It Was Live
It Was Live

"I bought my rental property in the year 2000, a tri-plex. There was already a elderly woman living in one of the units. She was section 8. She turned out to be a sweet woman but a bit of a hoarder. She was my tenant for approximately 15 years. She passed away in the apartment and I think she was about 88. Her daughter tried to clean the unit but I believe became overwhelmed. She did a pretty good job but I still had a lot of stuff to remove. While cleaning out the basement I found what looked like a grenade sitting up on a rafter. I looking through the Internet and thought it looked like a smoke grenade. It was quite old looking and had no markings.

I took a picture and emailed it to the local Sheriff’s office but never received a reply. I let it go until I needed to re-rent the apartment. I then carefully put the grenade thing in a bucket and took it over to my house. I put it in the garage where it ended up sitting for another five years. All that time I was careful not to move it much.

That is when I decided to sell my house. I called the local police department non-emergency number and told them about the item I found. I asked them what to do with the item. An officer showed up to look at the grenade, he then called other officers. Next thing I know the block has been evacuated and I am being questioned about where it came from. They wanted to know why I kept it so long. I suspect they did not believe I found it at my rental. The bomb squad eventually showed up and removed the device. I asked the bomb squad officer if she thought the grenade was real and she said it was definitely live. I really wish I knew how my tenant ended up with this. It added some excitement to my sleepy neighborhood."


"We had a young couple with 2 small children that had lived in our unit for about a year. They had gotten behind on their rent at times but had always got caught back up when she got her student loans.

This time, they were two months behind and their electric had been shut off so they were staying at her mom’s because she was pregnant with their third child. They said they would get caught up when she got her next student loan so, since she was pregnant, we were giving them some slack.

We never saw them come and go but other tenants said about once a week they would sneak in late at night, stay about 10 minutes and leave which we thought was really strange. Finally it became obvious that they were not going to pay so we told them to get all their things out and to clean really good and we wouldn’t take them to court for the money owed.

They took two more weeks and then left the key in our mailbox. We went in expecting it not to be clean because she was almost due and we knew her husband wasn’t going to clean. Well, we walk in and the place is trashed. They left everything but their clothes and maybe a few personal things. There was a huge sectional, washer and dryer, bed, a huge fish aquarium with one side broken and duct taped together, all their kids’ toys, a refrigerator full of rotting food and so much more. Anything heavy they had was left and this was a second floor unit with no elevator so it was a huge pain in the butt for us. Their kids had used crayons to write on all the walls, there was a huge oil stain in the living room carpet where apparently he had an engine or something in there, and there was one room filled with enough lumber to build a kid’s playhouse. Definitely not what we wanted to find but it’s not like we hadn’t seen other apartments in just as bad of shape.

So we got everything out except the huge fish aquarium that was in the dining area. We didn’t allow pets so we wondered what they had kept in there considering it was broken and wouldn’t have held water. There was a few rocks and a little log in there about 6 inches long.

So, we had been in there cleaning for two days, when my daughter’s boyfriend decided to tackle getting the aquarium downstairs. I was doing dishes in the kitchen and the dining area was about 3 ft away. So he gets the rocks all out and then he goes and picks up the log. He started screaming and jumped half way across the kitchen! Inside that little 6 inch log was a four foot yellow rosy boa constrictor snake. He had been curled up in there the whole time! I was totally freaked out! I hate snakes! Now, it all made sense why the tenants had been sneaking in every 5 or 6 days- he was coming by and feeding it live mice. Snakes swallow big meals so they don’t need to be fed often. I can’t imagine parents that would have 2 small children around a boa constrictor. Seemed very dangerous.

But now our problem was how to get rid of it. My boyfriend wanted to take it outside and shoot it but since it was yellow, I had a feeling it might be worth something. It’s not easy to just sell a snake! You can’t just list it on marketplace or craigslist and we didn’t even know what kind it was. Finally after a little research, and a lot of phone calls, we found the president of the local Herpitological Society and him and his wife gave us $150 for her. It didn’t even put a dent in what we had to pay to rehab the apartment but it was nice to get a little bit of compensation for all we went through."

Time Machine
Time Machine

"There are so many bizarre things that I have found as a landlord….

One time we took over a house after an old widow passed on.

The 95-year-old woman died. Her home—the upstairs anyway—was pristine 1960s-1970s decor and appliances.

She still had the green shag carpet from 1972—well cared for and in good shape. The Avocado-colored stove and fridge were there and still worked. There was even a console stereo with record player, AM/FM and a reel-to-reel tape player.

In addition to this there was an overflowing library of Jehovah’s witness religious materials, tracts, Baptist literature, and MORMON Bibles. There was Catholic and Jewish materials. There was pagan literature. Maybe she couldn't make up her mind?

It’s just, that—there was a lot of all of this — piles of all of it.

The cream of the crop was a King James Version Bible from 1801.

Inside of the record player pocket, I found LP (long play) albums by Beethoven, Elvis Presley, Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash—AND—get this…RUSH 2112, A Farewell to Kings, Caress of Steel, and Fly by Night. The old woman was a Rush fan! Incredible!

Fairly clean house—but I kept wondering—-What is that smell?

Then I went to the basement level.

This home had a walk-out basement, with a garage door and garage bay on one end.

Here is where I had to go full haz-mat. Someone had tossed down a 100-pound sack of cat food and left the door open.

I found no fewer than 38 feral cats. All with mange, some with eyeballs missing or hanging out—dead opossum and mice and rats, birds, squirrels and other critters everywhere…Inside the garage.

All of these dead animals, including at least a dozen kitten skeletons, were in differing modes of decomposition. There was everything from recently dead to full skeleton.

POOP was everywhere. Ankle deep poop—everywhere. Feral kittens, half starved, ribs showing—flea infested, covered in mange, open sores and cat poop.

I had to call animal control for help. They helped me to trap the worst of the lot, and hauled them off for euthanization. Some of the kittens were eventually adopted out.

The majority of the feral animals that couldn't be caught were put down.

It was the humane thing to do.

It took me three days, five gallons of concentrated industrial bleach, ten gallons of gas, a power washer, five gallons of liquid soap and a lot of elbow grease to clean up that mess.

It was 100 degrees out and I had to wear a haz-mat suit the entire time.

I even had to get a tetanus booster shot.

In the end, the smell had even permeated the sheet rock in the lower level, so we had to gut the entire place.

I think to this day that the old woman's heart was in the right place, even if her head was in the clouds."

They Forgot Grandma
They Forgot Grandma

"After my tenants moved out, I went over to check on things and see what condition they left it in. I opened the pantry doors and up on the top shelf, was what appeared to be a shoebox. When I got it down to eye level, I could not believe what I was holding. They moved out and left GRANDMA….or at least her cremains.

I’m not sure if they did it intentionally or not, but I made sure Grandma made it back to her family. I didn’t want her and it would not have been right to just set her out with the trash."


"Not landlords, but two very good friends of mine, who rented a bed-sit in the late 1970s. There was a fireplace in the room: the chimney had been blocked off, and the grate removed, The opening had been left, and in this the landlord had put a chest of drawers, which fitted quite well.

i helped my friends move in. We started to put clothing in the drawers, opened the middle drawer and found - a live tortoise. The landlord was unconcerned, the previous tenants had “done a flit” and no-one knew where they were - over 40 years (and several house moves) later, they still have Fred."