The Worst House We Ever Saw... Or Smelled.

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Christiansen Group Realty (260)704-0843

I (Jared) can remember this day like it was yesterday.  I was working with a local Fort Wayne real estate investor looking for fixer uppers that he could flip.  We would schedule two or three afternoons a week and go see 8-10 of them and throw out a few offers.  

Most of the investment homes we were looking for were in the $20,000 - $50,000 price range, and most of them were foreclosures.  I could probably write a book about some of the crap we saw out there.  

Anyway, back to THE HOUSE.  It was a very hot and humid day a few summers ago.  If I recall right it was in the high 90s and disgustingly humid.  The house was a little two bedroom on a basement.  In the description it said that it "Needed work" and that the basement was a "Little wet".  Yeah...  


As we approached the house we smelled something.  The closer we got the stronger the smell became.  When we opened the front door a wave of crap smell hit us.  I almost lost my lunch right there.  

I told the investor that we needed to walk away NOW.  He smiled as he walked to his car to get his gas masks.  I rolled my eyes.  

The main floor of the home was structurally sound.  The carpets (duh) needed replaced, the floors needed sealed, and the walls needed a few hundred coats of primer and paint to cover the smell.  

I looked over at the investor and said (in my best Darth Vader voice because I had a gas mask on) "You'll never get the smell out.  They are going to bulldoze this house."  He wanted to keep going.  

We started walking to the basement and we discovered what the smell was.  There was SERIOUSLY an inch of cat feces that 100% covered the entire basement floor.  The investor took one step and almost fell into the crap.  

I started gagging again and walked away from the house.  The neighbors came over and told us that the previous owner had become addicted to crack and went nuts.  She had over 50 cats that she kept in the basement.  I'm not sure what happened to her, but I hope she's okay.  I know that basement wasn't.  The house eventually sold for under $10,000.  I'm not sure what happened to those poor cats. 


We have a team member that still works with investors, but Amanda and I don't anymore.  The time commitment is the biggest issue for us.  The crap issue is a pretty big one too.  :)  If you are reading this and are a local Fort Wayne real estate investor, give our team a call and our investor specialist will help you.  Just remember to bring the gas masks.  

Posted by




Fort Wayne Realtors Jared and Amanda Christiansen with Century 21 Bradley

Amanda Christiansen is an award winning Realtor with Christiansen Group Realty.


Jared Christiansen is a business partner and in charge of marketing and taking care of things behind the scene.


Enough about us...


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We are committed to giving you everything we have to offer.  We are both full time agents and will work around your schedule.  Do nights and weekends work better for you?  NO PROBLEM. We are here to help YOU at YOUR convenience.


Amanda can be reached at 260-704-0843, and Jared can be reached at 260-704-0842, or you can email us at, or




Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
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  2. Dale Taylor 02/25/2012 11:36 AM
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Robert Poe CCIM

I think the last time I had to "mask up" was in military training and it was awful.  Must have been one crazy person but welcome to real estate 2012.......

Feb 02, 2012 04:29 PM #126
Sylvie Stuart
Realty One Group Mountain Desert 928-600-2765 - Flagstaff, AZ
Home Buying, Home Selling and Investment - Flagsta

Wow, I've seen some bad homes in my career, but none have been THAT bad. I could smell it the way you wrote this, it's a great post. I still think it's funny he had gas masks in his car!

Feb 03, 2012 12:22 AM #127
Linda Fidgeon
Berkshire Hathaway Homeservices Page Realty - Wrentham, MA
Make your next move your best move!

Yes, Jared, you got me beat! I don't know whether to laugh or cry when I read these kinds of posts. But, if you don't keep a sense of humor in these situations, you will end up needing a week in the rubber room.

Feb 03, 2012 01:49 AM #128
Ken Anderson
Apex Results Realty Inc., Brokerage - Burlington, ON
Broker in Burlington, Ontario

Don't show it, send in the home inspector and read his report!  Sorry, guys, just being funny.  Move out the physical droppings, wash down with bleach and Lysol, seal house, run powerful ozone generator for 3 days, you can take off gas mask, now.

Feb 03, 2012 03:53 AM #129
Ken Anderson
Apex Results Realty Inc., Brokerage - Burlington, ON
Broker in Burlington, Ontario

Actually, probably better to seal off house first and run ozone generator, then again after.

Feb 03, 2012 03:54 AM #130
Marlis Landreth
Retired - Tucson, AZ
Retired Tucson Realtor

A good point for cats - we were cat breeders back in Iowa and one time, in particular, my two "moms" had 15 babies between them over a three day periood (one had 10 and the other 5) and we had 3 other adult cats, but people coming into our home said they would never have known we even had one cat.  Cats are normally cleaner than dogs or just about any other animal you might have in your home.  But I know there are some people with animals who give the rest of the good guys a bad name.

Feb 03, 2012 04:52 AM #131
Jack O'Neal
Conway Real Estate - Gilbert, AZ

See it all the time I just walk away, If I can smell it from the street I'm out of there

Feb 03, 2012 10:49 AM #132
Kay Van Kampen
RE/MAX Broker, RE/MAX Solutions - Springfield, MO
Realtor®, Springfield Mo Real Estate

I tried to show one a few weeks ago.  Opened the door and shut it quick.  Told the buyers if they had a week stomach to stay in the car.  Yours tops them all.

Feb 03, 2012 11:10 AM #133
Kasey & John Boles
Jon Gosche Real Estate, LLC - - Boise, ID
Boise & Meridian, ID Ada/Canyon/Gem/Boise Counties

Oh wow.  That's disgusting.  I thought the end of the story was going to be about how your investor bought it and made a great flip out of it.  I guess I'm wrong.  And, I'm glad I didn't have to walk throught he house.  But good for him for being prepared with his gas mask :-) Kasey

Feb 03, 2012 12:15 PM #134
Amanda Christiansen
Christiansen Group Realty (260)704-0843 - Fort Wayne, IN
Christiansen Group Realty

I love to hear all of the stories and experiences!!  Thank you all for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. 

Feb 03, 2012 12:30 PM #135
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

It could have been worse, you could have found a body.  I wonder if that has happenned before.

Feb 03, 2012 01:33 PM #136
Kathy Dowd
RE/MAX Realty Team, 239 220 4133 - Punta Gorda, FL
Consider it SOLD

No one person asked about the lady it was all about the casts interesing!  Gene as green as the pools are here in SW Florida I wonder the same thing if they clean a pool will they find a body???

Feb 03, 2012 11:57 PM #137
Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

H Jared, I think I showed that house in Florida.  I help my breath and invester his nose.  After 2 minutes he said no and I could inhale again!

Feb 04, 2012 10:30 AM #138
Amanda -

It's definitely sad, but sometimes homeowners just can't cope and things like that happen. Poor cats. While  trashing out a property in Minneapolis we came across a dead cat, the sad reality of foreclosures... 



Feb 04, 2012 03:21 PM #139
Dawn A Fabiszak
Private Label Realty ( Denver metro area, Colorado - Aurora, CO
The Dawn of a New Real Estate Experience!

Jared ~ I feel sorry for those cats that had to live in that basement with all that crap.  I'm sure many of them ended up with diseases.  I am one huge animal lover.

Feb 05, 2012 12:19 PM #140
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

what with the spam on active rain, I thought you had to be registered to be here???

Feb 06, 2012 01:31 PM #141
Susan Zanzonico
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services - Morristown, NJ
Sellers/Buyers Agent, Morristown NJ Real Estate

This is an amazing and sad story.  I must say that I too find it interesting that you just happened to have 'gas masks' with you.  I guess you have seen enough even up to that point to know to expect just about anything!

Feb 20, 2012 11:05 PM #142
Fred Griffin
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

You lived to tell about it... so it could not have been that bad   ;) 


  Seriously... people who abuse cats or other animals should be flogged.

Feb 25, 2012 12:02 PM #143
Matt Robinson
Professional Investors Guild - Pensacola, FL

Ok, so I am in fact eating lunch, so I skipped to the bottom after I read that part.  But enough said.  I am a rehabber also, and a realtor 2nd, so I have seen it all as well.  But most of them time, the worst it smells, the happier I am...because it means a deal.  We always say it smells like money...LOL.  The worst is cat pee, which just gets more pungent in the hot weather.  The things we do for money!  Haha.

Oct 04, 2012 04:27 AM #144
Wayne B. Pruner
Oregon First - Tigard, OR
Tigard Oregon Homes for Sale, Realtor, GRI

That's pretty discusting. Cat smell is one of the very worst.

Oct 21, 2012 10:23 AM #145
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Christiansen Group Realty
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