Entries Tagged as 'Zoning Violation'

Downside To Hillside Home

October 23rd, 2010 · 17 Comments

I had the pleasure of viewing this, uh, interesting mountainside home in Phoenix this week.  In a setting of million dollar homes and views, the previous owners cheapened the house, in my opinion, with horrific faux paint as you’ll soon see. 

They were a little upset that the house went into foreclosure; the return vent was kicked in.  Every wall, and I mean EVERY wall, was painted with bright colors and finished off with gold sponge paint.

really ugly horrific terrible awful tacky faux sponge paint Phoenix Arizona home house

Let your eyes readjust for a moment.  Here’s the front yard of the house.  The lot size is 1.2 acres.  Hilltop home with nearly 360-degree views.  It’s quite a walk up to the house.

hilltop hillside mountainside home house fixer-upper Phoenix Arizona dirt driveway

Check out the dirt driveway.  All rutted from erosion.

hilltop hillside mountainside home house fixer-upper Phoenix Arizona rutted dirt driveway

OK, now back to the horror.  This is the living room.  Green with gold sponge paint.  Entirely green.  Nearly every square inch.  The room in the background is also green.

really ugly horrific terrible awful tacky faux sponge paint Phoenix Arizona home house

The kitchen with ugly red paint with gold sponge paint.

really ugly horrific terrible awful tacky faux sponge paint Phoenix Arizona home house

They ripped out tile at the front entry (seen here), the master bath, and two other locations.  Was probably custom-made mosaic that they wanted to take (or sell).  The house was listed for $2,877,000 in February 2008.  It didn’t sell.

removed ripped up torn out mosaic tile entry floor damage Phoenix Arizona home house

It was re-listed in April 2008 at $2,250,000.  It didn’t sell.  It was listed again in September 2008 as a short sale for $1,200,000.  It didn’t sell.

really ugly horrific terrible awful tacky faux sponge paint Phoenix Arizona home house

Media room/movie theatre with green padded wall and ceiling cushions.  The house went into foreclosure and was taken back by the bank in 2009.  The bank listed it for $735,000 in April 2009, then dropped it to $550,000.  It’s now listed at $479,000.

green padded wall cushions media room movie theater home house Phoenix Arizona

Downstairs family room with lots of damage.  That’s a wet bar in the corner.

drop ceiling damage wet bar fixer-upper vandalism foreclosure Phoenix Arizona home house

The family room with floor tile on the wall (repeated in several other rooms).  In my opinion, this home was poorly designed.  It’s a hilltop home but has view windows from the living room and master bedroom and that’s all.  Surprisingly, the house is very dark.  The media room, the family room, and the next two photos are the basement floor with no windows at all.  How can you entertain guests in darkness?  The only way down there is by a narrow staircase off the back of the kitchen.  Creepy.

drop ceiling damage fixer-upper vandalism foreclosure Phoenix Arizona home house

I expected sunshine in a mountainside home so didn’t bring a flashlight.  These photos were taken in total darkness, using the camera flash to light my way.  Flash and walk 10 feet.  Flash and walk 10 feet.

dark design no windows tile on walls mountain rock inside Phoenix Arizona home house

In the dark, I thought that thing in the corner was an ugly water fountain.  But it’s actually part of the mountain!  To the left of it was another room, used as an office.  All that time spent installing tile and rock veneer!  In total darkness.  It’s like a mine in Chile.

dark design no windows tile on walls mountain rock inside Phoenix Arizona home house

The master bedroom with tacky green and gold paint.  They spent so much money on tacky decor in this house.

really ugly horrific terrible awful tacky faux sponge paint Phoenix Arizona home house

The master bedroom smells of pet urine.  And you can see why.

bad awful smell dog urine stained carpet master bedroom fixer-upper Phoenix Arizona home

These are the steps leading to the front door.  Uh, where’s the railing??!!  How dangerous is this staircase??

dangerous unsafe code violation missing railing scary staircase Phoenix Arizona home

Looking down from the top of the stairs.  One slip and you’re a goner.  The dirt driveway has eroded onto the stairs.

dangerous unsafe code violation missing railing scary staircase Phoenix Arizona home

The house is 5 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 5000 square feet.  So much work needed, small kitchen, dark rooms, etc. that it’s really a tear-down.  What a shame.  What a waste.

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Tags: Carpet · Ceiling · Driveway · Faux Paint & Murals · Fixer-Upper · Foreclosure · Phoenix Homes · Safety Issue · Tile · Ugly Décor · Vandalism & Theft · What Were They Thinking?!?! · Zoning Violation

Ugly Everything

August 16th, 2010 · 9 Comments

We’re trying to find something nice to say about this house.

They saved money by not paying for a building permit for the room addition?  The back door is eco-friendly?  They recycle?  The electric panel is accessible?

non-permitted room addition unsafe electric panel fixer-upper foreclosure Phoenix home house

They save time & energy by not having landscaping?  They didn’t waste money on a concrete driveway?  It’s a big lot?

boring curb appeal no driveway or landscaping Phoenix Arizona home house

The refrigerator is included with the sale?  The house has gas service?  The gas line serves as a cup holder?

ugly kitchen dirty walls unsafe gas line refrigerator fixer-upper foreclosure Phoenix home

The cabinets look new?  There’s a window above the sink?  Nice.

ugly kitchen missing faucet dirty walls fixer-upper foreclosure Phoenix home house

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Tags: Cabinets · Curb Appeal · Fixer-Upper · Foreclosure · Kitchen · Landscaping · Phoenix Homes · Room Addition · Safety Issue · Security Bars · Zoning Violation

Do-It-Yourself Gone Wrong

July 6th, 2010 · 4 Comments

Some thumbtacks and a piece of cardboard will cover up that hole nicely.  Buyers won’t even notice.

air vent hole covered up with cardboard thumbtacks bad repairs Phoenix Arizona home house

We’ll install our own electric service panel without city permits.  We’ll put the weatherhead on a six foot pole ourselves.  There’s no need to consult with the local power company (gosh, their 42″-48″ max height rules suck anyway).  Yep, we built the house ourselves too.  Who needs attic space?  Just make the roofline flush with the rooms’ ceilings.  It’s hot in Phoenix, so if you put the water heater outside in the sun, it’s like getting hot water for free.

electric service panel weatherhead code violation safety issue Phoenix Arizona home house

We added electric wiring to the outside of the house.  Junction boxes mark where the wires go inside the house.

electric wiring conduit outside of house code violation safety issue Phoenix Arizona home

Don’t ask, ‘cuz we’re not telling.

damaged popcorn ceiling fixer-upper Phoenix Arizona home house photo

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Tags: Ceiling · Fixer-Upper · Phoenix Homes · Repairs · Safety Issue · Zoning Violation

Serious Safety Concerns

April 4th, 2010 · 2 Comments

What were these people thinking?!!  Let’s hook up our dryer’s vent to the gas water heater and maybe it will help heat up the water.  Right.  So the blowing air won’t affect the gas flame.  Hmmm.

stupid dumb idea dryer vent connected to gas water heater San Diego safety issue hazard

How about we store bleach and detergent next to the gas water heater??!!

bleach laundry detergent stored near gas water heater San Diego safety issue hazard

We don’t need to maintain this walkway do we?  Buyers won’t fall & trip when they visit.  That’s what insurance is for, right?

stone walkway steps in disrepair broken San Diego safety issue hazard

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Tags: Hazards · Other US Cities · Safety Issue · What Were They Thinking?!?! · Zoning Violation

The Electric Slide

March 20th, 2010 · 6 Comments

These three San Diego homeowners are going to be in for a shock when the buyers run away or ask for electrical repairs after seeing these safety hazards.

Electrical spaghetti.  Watt where they thinking?

electric wires safety issue hazard San Diego California home house

Creative wiring.  At least they’re labeled??

electric wires safety issue hazard San Diego California home house

Air freshener and nightlight too.  Wanna bet the outlet’s not GFCI protected?

electric wires safety issue hazard San Diego California home house

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Tags: Other US Cities · Safety Issue · What Were They Thinking?!?! · Zoning Violation

Two Attached Outhouses

November 14th, 2009 · 8 Comments

Back of a home with two room additions, mostly likely bathrooms.  But the rooms were not built on a foundation.  They are held up by concrete support piers, the kind you see under old homes with wood floors.  It is very doubtful they were built with city permits.  The two white boxes on top are evaporative coolers.  Water runs down the slatted sides and a fan sucks in outside air; the water cools the air.  The gas water heater sits on the ground.

two pink outhouses room additions without permits Phoenix home house real estate photo

There’s a guest house in the back that needs a new roof.

guest house bad roof Phoenix home house real estate photo

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Tags: Phoenix Homes · Room Addition · What Were They Thinking?!?! · Zoning Violation

Shanty Town

July 29th, 2009 · 3 Comments

I’m embarrassed and ashamed to admit we have houses like this in Phoenix.  Looks like some of the houses I saw in Cambodia.  What a shame.  All of those crazy room additions.  All without building permits.  All built on dirt, I’m sure, which is a great conduit for termites.  Someone probably lives out there.  Believe me, that is quite common.  I did social work in the poor sections of Phoenix for many years and met clients living in places like this.  Notice the satellite dish on top of the roof.

ugly shack shanty unpermitted room addition unsafe bad MLS photos Phoenix home house

A close-up of the back of the house.  At least they installed guardrails for the ramp, right?  Safety first.

ugly shack shanty unpermitted room addition unsafe bad MLS photos Phoenix home house

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Tags: Back Yard · Garbage and/or Junk · Phoenix Homes · Room Addition · Zoning Violation

This Is Just Dumb

July 27th, 2009 · 1 Comment

Dumb, dumb, dumb.  A heavy block fireplace placed nearly in the middle of the room.  And blocking the window.  And ugly to boot.  And probably not built to city code.  It’s too heavy to be temporarily moved to that position.  So what possessed someone to build it there?  So they could cover up the ugly carpet?

ugly fireplace zoning violation stupid placement hideous carpet bad MLS photos Phoenix

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Tags: Carpet · Fireplace · Phoenix Homes · What Were They Thinking?!?! · Zoning Violation

Awful Bathroom

June 16th, 2009 · No Comments

I showed this Phoenix foreclosure home to clients this morning.  It’s listed for $40,000.  Four bedrooms, 2 baths, 1530 square feet.  Sounds like a great buy.  Until you see it inside.  Another example of amateur remodelers.  The entire house was a mess.  Dirty walls, bad floor tile, human waste in both toilets, dented A/C unit, roof leaks, etc.  The owners did not take care of the home.

This is the master bathroom.  They started to remodel but stopped when the bank took the house back.  The biggest and scariest problem with this home is that they replumbed the house not in copper but in pvc sprinkler piping!  The entire house.  You can see the white pvc pipe in the photo.  They used blue hot glue to seal the pipes.  And they did not try to conceal the sprinkler piping; they did not fill in the drywall holes throughout the house.  What other building codes were broken?  This is a house you run away from.

ugly dirty unfinished bathroom remodel fixer-upper foreclosure home house Phoenix

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Tags: Bathroom · Fixer-Upper · Foreclosure · Phoenix Homes · Remodeling · Zoning Violation

Sad Little House

May 6th, 2009 · 3 Comments

Poor little house, with its dirt back yard.  The front of the house faces Interstate 17.  How nice.

ugly curb appeal dirt back yard green house home bad MLS photos Phoenix

The kitchen has newer cabinets, but the rest is in bad shape.  Look how they added electricity after the room was built.  Let’s put an electric 220v stove right next to the sink and next to the non-GFCI outlets.

ugly kitchen bad electric work safety hazard fixer-upper Phoenix home house

The $50 bathroom remodel.

ugly bathroom cheap vanity foreclosure fixer-upper Phoenix home house

Quality workmanship.

bad drywall electric flooring fixer-upper foreclosure bad MLS photos Phoenix home house

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Tags: Back Yard · Bathroom · Curb Appeal · Fixer-Upper · Flooring · Foreclosure · Kitchen · Landscaping · Phoenix Homes · Remodeling · Safety Issue · Zoning Violation