When you're dealing a new home, the term "unexpected surprise" usually comes with a bad connotation.
Rotting wood, faulty pipes, a cracked foundation, problems with the central air conditioning, termites, inefficient wiring, improper insulation, sheet rock layered on top of sheet rock, a structurally questionable roof - any number of issues could really sour your home purchasing experience.
Or, you could end up with a home where the previous resident leaves all of their stuff behind.
Attention people with US$550,000 in cash!— Josh K. Elliott (@joshkelliott) March 19, 2018
Do you prefer sculpted people over real ones?
Are crocheted ceilings your jam?
Does the idea of a Cadillac with running water make you scream "YAS"?
Then this crazy Detroit listing might be the home of your dreams.https://t.co/R0TYTkEIP7
But sometimes, surprises that people find in their homes and on their property aren't so horrifying as a bunch of limbless statues watching them while they sleep.
Like this funny note Alex and Jess Monney came across while renovating the bathroom in their home from a previous owner.
They included an adorable couple's photo of themselves, along with this message:
"Hi! We're the Shinseki's! We remodeled this bathroom Summer 1995. If you're reading this that means you're remodeling the bathroom again. What's wrong with the way we did it?!?!?"
But wait! There's more! The Shinseki's also included a picture of their pet rabbit, Cassie, for good measure.
Alex and Jess' contractor sent them the photos of what he found taped to the inner walls during his remodel of the bathroom, and then they shared the pics to Twitter, much to the joy of everyone on the internet.
In case you were wondering what the Shinseki's bathroom looked like, Jess uploaded some photos of it before the remodel went underway.
If you know me, you know I love house projects. However, even I think I might be a little crazy for kicking off a bathroom remodel 4 weeks before I’m due. Bye bye bathroom! 👋🏻 And sorry in advance for the bathroom remodel updates to come. pic.twitter.com/yCJJN0A0KL— Jess Monney (@Jess_Monney) July 3, 2018
Even though they never met the couple who lived there before them, Jess and Alex wanted the Shinseki's to know they think their bathroom is lovely. In an interview with BuzzFeed, Alex explained why the expecting couple needed to change it up.
Your bathroom, and home, is lovely. It has given us a lot of beautiful memories and we can't wait to raise our little baby girl here. Sorry we're changing the bathroom, but the shower is too small for me to fit in (I'm 6' and my wife is 5'). Thank you for the amazing surprise!
There have been other "hidden notes" left over by previous owners, like this couple in 1981 who wallpapered their bathroom together and wanted future owners to know how much fun they had doing it.
Sometimes previous owners leave functional easter eggs behind. Like this pull down toilet table.
But remodelers leaving notes behind for people to find is a time-honored tradition. There was one redditor who remodeled a bathroom that was made in 1929. The plumber who installed it took so much pride in his work that he signed his name on it.
"I found a signature from the plumber who installed the first bathroom in our old house in 1929. We were renovating it for the first time since he put it in. We reused the claw tub and toilet with new insides. He did good work and signed in beautiful Palmer script."
Then there are the instances of "buried treasure" being left on people's property. Remember these honest neighbors who discovered a ton of money and returned it to its original owners...who lived down the street?
There was also this couple who found a locked safe in the floor of their home when they were remodeling it.
After several months of trying to get it open, they finally did, only to reveal that the thing was empty, save for the combination to the safe written on a sheet of paper. The ultimate act of trolling, especially after they went through so much effort to get the darn thing cracked open.
I don't know what it is about hidden safes in homes, but they're everywhere. Reddit user hippyscum found one lurking behind an electrical socket.
Taking a break from remodeling his home, he chronicled the entire journey of opening this bad boy, and it's chock full of suspense.
SO this is the box as we left it yesterday. I tried jamming a screwdriver into the keyhole; no success. Tried prying it out; no success. Then noticed that weird metal bit above the lock. So I smacked that with a hammer and screwdriver and...
Will it open...
Prying very hard... wasn't required as it opened very easily after that. It turns out it's a drawer, not a door. Looks like this: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Imitation-Double-Plug-Socket-Security/dp/B00G2MNR5U
What mysteries does it hold...
Oh it's the bankcard that my friend must have put back in the tray while we weren't looking. The name is that of the previous owner. It expired in June 2006 and is with a bank that no longer exists. The part I broke off is inside the drawer.
A receipt from B&Q from October 2005. Hilariously this is probably the receipt for the lockbox.
So that's it, Reddit. Thanks for your enthusiasm...
I've put the stuff back in its little cubbyhole...
And then we'll get back to decorating.
If reading about long undiscovered secret stuff is your thing, this guy's video of unlocking an underground bunker in Russia may be up your alley, too. Very, very creepy stuff, the total opposite of the nice gesture left behind by the Shinseki's.
Finding a handwritten note pressed between the pages of a book, or in the pocket of some secondhand clothing you purchased, or tucked away in some part of a house you recently moved into, is almost always an exciting find. The fact that someone took time to pen their thoughts and feelings down and then hide them away is super cool. It gives you a personal look into someone's thoughts, especially if it's a note that wasn't intended to be read by anyone else.
It's even better when the note is a blast from the past, because then you're getting some legit first-hand history from an actual person, not some lame lecture on the Louisiana Purchase or news articles on the first World War.
Maybe it's because so few people actually write anything by hand anymore, but even finding notes written just the other day feels special. Sure it's a bit voyeuristic to read a note meant for someone else, but, hey, if they didn't want someone reading it, maybe they shouldn't have written it down in the first place.
Whatever, I refuse to feel bad for looking at found notes.