For those looking to live within a Homeowner's Association's jurisdiction – whether it's a house in a community, or a unit in a condominium – specific rules imposed by the HOA can be downright ridiculous.
Potential buyers who become aware of demanding HOA rules like maintaining manicured lawns "twice a week" can easily elicit a hard "no" response.
Basically, if the neighborhood you're considering to live in looks like Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives, do a 180. Otherwise, you'll have your work cut out for you.
Curious to hear from homeowners on the internet, Redditor imback91 asked:
These Redditors complained of strict rules that may have been temporary inconveniences.
But perhaps the biggest grievance applied towards an unsympathetic HOA president.
"House in the neighborhood caught fire. Luckily everyone was okay (they had small children), but the fire burnt a hole in the side of the house."
"While waiting for it to be repaired, the family covered the hole with a blue tarp to prevent rain from getting in and causing more damage."
"HOA fined them because the tarp was an 'eyesore.'"
"The president of our HOA came to wish me well when both of my parents died (I lived with them, I was 18). Literally the next day he sent me a fine for forgetting to bring the trash cans in. I drew a middle finger on the paper and sent it back to them and then proceeded to park my car on the lawn until I was able to sell the house. Never did pay that fine or the fines they sent me for having cars on the lawn lol. I know I'm petty."
That's Just Garbagedrag race no GIF by Robert E Blackmon Giphy
"My old boss lived in an HOA that demanded that trash cans couldn't be at the curb for more than THREE HOURS before or after trash collection. She got fined all the time because she was working during those hours and would have to bring it in late."
Some rules have no rhyme or reason for existing. Like fining people if they don't mow their lawns TWICE A WEEK or for not mowing lawns THAT DON'T EXIST.
Must be HOA presidents who are hungry with power.
"When we were looking for a house, I was pretty against homes in HOAs, but I'd still look and wanted the bylaws available so I could see if they were something I could live with if I really liked the house. Like our last house we rented was in an hoa and the rules were basically 'keep the grass decently mowed, don't park cars or campers anywhere not paved, animals outside of a fenced area need to be on a leash. Thanks!' So yeah, normal things."
"We found a home we really really liked, but the hoa rules were absurd. Like you had to mow the yard 2x a week between the months of April-October but no mowing after 5pm (because noise) trash can't be taken out before 8am and must be back in the garage by 10 am on wednesdays, no food smokers without prior approval, all grills must be gas and have approval, no cars in driveways longer than 15 minutes" it was insane. No thank you."
Christmas Has A Cut-Off
"My parents HOA is stupid strict. Can't have any holiday decorations up past the first week of Jan. My mom pulled a Clark Griswold and broke her ankle falling off a ladder putting up decorations before the holidays so a wreath was left on the front door longer than allowed. They got a letter with a picture and a threat of fine."
"A few summers later they and some of their neighbors decided to stick it to the man. They got a flock of plastic lawn flamingos and planted them in one of their yards. Whenever the HOA would send a letter the flock migrated to another yard. Kept it up for about a month and a half."
Mowing Without A Lawn
"The first month in our townhouse, we got a notice that we had not mowed our lawn and were in danger of being fined. We didn't have a lawn. The entire yard was covered in topsoil, seed, and straw. The 'lawn' turned out to be a single weed that was growing up in the shade of a bay window."
"I didn't pull it. I tied it to a stake and told them it was our garden."
"Can't take a walk after 8PM."
"People's dogs bark and apparently this is others' fault for walking outside..."
These HOA community rules for maintaining a sense of uniformity were scoffed at as they were created to benefit HOA presidents.
The Second CoatGiphy
"We have to get HOA permission to repaint the house the same color it already is."
"The fences on your property must all be the same color, and match the adjoining fences of the neighbors property. The community was planned single-family houses with fences between houses. Looking from the street it went House-fence-house-fence-house-.... I was in the middle of the row and had a shared fence with both neighbors, that each had their own color. I got a violation notice the same week I moved."
"If I painted my fences to match each other, at least one of my neighbors wouldn't have matched theirs on the other side. This would have sent a cascade of violations down the street."
Keeping Up With Appearances
"Not allowed to park pick up trucks in the drive way with two exceptions: the Cadillac EXT and the Lincoln Blackwood. These were described as luxury vehicles. The HOA president also drove an EXT so he basically exempted himself from the rules."
Some Shady Business
"Everyone in my neighborhood was fined for having 'dirty roofs.' Seriously, they claimed that everyones roofs were dirty and made the neighborhood look bad. It's not like they were covered in mold or anything, hell idk how a roof is even dirty but 268 of the 284 houses in my neighborhood were fined $75 for it. We found out later that the HOA president started a power washing business and likely just wanted to drum up some business. He was impeached because of it and none of us even paid the fines."
"Edit: I've replied in the comments with this a few times but it should be noted; power washing asphalt shingles will ruin them. It's strips them bare and you'd have to replace them as a result. The HOA presidents son conveniently owned a roofing company, which was 1 of the 2 that were approved by the HOA to work in the neighborhood. So after he would have ruined your roof and made money from that, you'd have to hire his son to replace your roof."
Why can't HOA's just stick to what's important? They act like members of Congress, don't they? There are far more pressing matters but you want to focus on the trivial. SMH!
I remember a story about an HOA that told a resident he was not allowed to have a pickup truck because of the ban on "work vehicles" in the bylaws. There was no contractor or business sign on it, the truck was a personal vehicle. The HOA wouldn't budge. He went out and bought an old station wagon that he painted camouflage and stuck a picture in the back window of his brand new shiny pickup truck with a sign that said, "The HOA will allow me to have this car, but not this truck in my driveway." The bylaws were amended shortly to allow non-commercial pickup trucks.
Go Away?Go Away Reaction GIF by MOODMAN Giphy
Not allowed to put a welcome mat at my front door.
Hush little baby...
Friend of mine lived in a building that didn't allow vacuuming between the hours of 1-3pm; the time of the HOA president's child's nap time.
Here's your fine for vacuuming.
I wasn't vacuuming,
Yes you were I have a recording of it.
I assure you I was no vacuuming, I was at work all day, and I live alone.
Then why did I hear a vacuum going inside your apartment
I set up a 2 hour long track of vacuum sounds to play automatically from 1pm to 3pm. They say music is good for plant growth, and my cactus hasn't done much recently so I though maybe it liked vacuums, have a good evening.
I Love Flowers
We have a landscaping committee. If you want to plant flowers, they must be approved by the committee before you plant them.
I have this rule as well.
When I moved in I noticed a bare spot in the landscaping facing my house. I was wondering what to put there and when I met my neighbour next to me I asked about what we were allowed to put there.
"Oh, nothing.... you're not allowed to add anything to the landscaping."
"Can... I put a potted tree or something there?"
"No. If you're really torn up about it though, you can e-mail the strata."
"Oh, do you have their e-mail?"
"It's mine. Here."
This is stupid for how we were asked to handle it....
HOA covenant says trash cans can't be visible from street. We keep ours at the side of the house like half the neighborhood. You can only see them if you follow the outer edge of the cul-de-sac and are really trying to look for them. And of course that traffic is minimal since it is a cul-de-sac.
Management company told us put them in garage or behind house. I opted for behind the house where the entire freaking neighborhood can see since we back up to the main road into and out of the neighborhood.
So many colors...
My parents moved into an HOA a few years ago. I lived with them temporarily. One day, someone from the HOA went around to every house with a color palette of shades of white that were acceptable for mailboxes to be painted in. If the white paint on a mailbox didn't exactly match one of the shades of white on their color palette, the mailbox had to be repainted, at the expense of the homeowner. My parents had to repaint their white mailbox so its shade of white was acceptable.
I prefer Red...Shiba Inu Bounce GIF Giphy
In my neighborhood, we are not allowed to have blue trampoline covers. They must be green or black.
Not my HOA, but when we were condo-hunting we looked at one community that had a change log for their house rules. They'd been amended from no pets to allowing one cat per unit, and then two weeks later back to no pets. What did that cat do?
Not Without my Camper!
My parents live in an HOA neighborhood. It didn't have a ton of rules or restrictions so they moved in. One of their main rules is you can't have a camper visible from the street.
In the county they live in you can't have a camper parked in front of the house (basically the front door is considered the front of the house). They knew this going into the house so first month they had poured a drive way addition that ran to the side of their house and into the back yard.
Their house is at the end of the street so you can only see this camper I'd you walk into their side yard.
One HOA sent my dad a pic that someone took standing in his yard. He copied the county's trespassing laws and gun defense laws to a letter and forward it to the HOA.
He hasn't heard from them since then.
Isn't a neighborhood supposed to be welcoming? That is the whole point of community no? I feel like an HOA should be a band of merry peeps trying to keep the neighborhood happy for all. Who twisted the meaning?
Battle of the Pigeons
Not necessarily a rule, but my HOA has been having a never ending battle with pigeons since I bought my condo 5 years ago. Their latest plan was to leave trays of poison seeds all over the complex (on the ground, no less). This resulted in a pigeon corpses appearing all over the complex with no noticeable decrease in the amount of pigeons hanging around. After a huge storm blew the trays over, it also resulted in everyone being afraid to walk their dogs for fear of ingesting poison. A+ work HOA.
Edit- INFO- This post inspired me to go back through my HOA emails to refresh myself on the situation. The poison was put out by a pest company. I did some research on the matter out of curiosity. Apparently in Arizona, pigeons are not protected & it is legal to kill them, but use of poison is highly discouraged due to our large protected birds program.
"Hedge" your bets...
I have hedges in the front yard. There's dirt under them because you know, plants grow from dirt. HOA comes by and says we absolutely can't have any exposed dirt, including under the shrubs. I didn't even know what I was supposed to do about that?? I just poured mulch over the dirt under the shrubs. They haven't said anything so I think that was the right thing to do. It definitely looks worse than just the plain dirt.
Wildest thing is that it was just the dirt under the shrubs for a literal decade.
In the Dark
At my parent's house growing up, you weren't allowed to have the garage door open and illuminated after dark for 1) aesthetics and 2) bears. We got cited because we were packing for a camping trip, bringing things from the garage to the car in the driveway. When we pointed out how dumb that was, they said we could have done it without violating the agreement if we'd loaded the car in the dark.
You can't leave your trash cans anywhere visible unless it's trash day. For reasons too difficult to explain, it's almost impossible to get the cans in the back yard, so we had them at the side of the house (in the shade, practically invisible unless you were standing in our driveway). Fast forward to a letter from the HOA reminding us of that rule and helpfully including a photo of our cans.
My dad's/stepmom's condo association told them they had to get rid of a potted plant on their front porch because it clashed with their front door. Their WHITE front door. No colors clash with white!
Window washers hired by homeowners must be chosen from an approved list of window-cleaning businesses by the HOA.
I SpyBinoculars Watching GIF by Originals Giphy
We are only allowed to have chained link fences. No wooden or any other fencing. I'm sorry, but I want some privacy in my back yard. Our houses are so close together I can see everything the neighbors around me are doing.
Edit: so I just checked hedges are ok. No mention of slats in the fences. Our bylaws are kinda vague.
The Welcome Note
I recently started renting a house in an HOA community. One of the first pieces of mail I received was from the HOA telling me that my fence had not been approved by the board and the house is in violation of the HOA rules. That was a fun note to get in the first week after uprooting and moving across the country with no money.
Worse than the Cops
I actually live in a condo now with a pretty chill HOA... the worst place was actually when I lived in an apartment in a town that didn't allow overnight parking. I had to park like 1/4 mile away in a municipal lot but had to have the car moved by 830am. Overnight guests had to be reported to the police so they didn't get ticketed.
When I busted my knee and was on crutches, I had to get a letter from my doctor faxed to the police dept in order to get special permission to park on the street near my place overnight.
After having to play "may I have an overnight guest" with the police, an HOA would have to be really nasty to be worse than that.
When my parents bought the house I grew up in during the early 90's, they got a letter in the mail saying that they hadn't paid their dues for the HOA. They took the letter into the office and asked what fees they were referring to.
The office lady was really rude and pulled out a piece of paper saying that my parents had signed a contract and they were legally obligated to pay their monthly dues and follow the rules blah blah Karen Karen blah.
Well, when my parents looked at the sheet they supposedly signed, it wasn't their signatures. Their names, not their signatures.
Someone at the HOA had forged the paperwork, presumably bc they'd forgotten to get it signed. Needless to say, the contract was void and my parents refused to sign a new one. They were one of about 5 houses that they'd done this to in the neighborhood, one of which was our nextdoor neighbors. About 3 houses to this day still don't have signed contracts including theirs, and they get to do whatever the hell they want with their house, to the immense frustration of the HOA.
""Find a Hobby"
Some people really need lives. I can totally understand noise issues, ugly horticulture, or bad behavior issues. But people are already paying a ton of money for the house and the land, so why do you need to pinpoint every little personal thing? Are these people's lives that dull or empty?
The HOA I'm in currently is controlled 100% by the building company that developed the neighborhood. That control moves to elections once 100% of the plots are developed within the development for residential purposes. The literal last plot currently has a nice looking storage garage for landscaping equipment for the communal areas that the builder maintains. They've maintained control of the HOA for the last ten years.
They don't pester anyone. The only rules for appearances are that the property must comply with state/county/town codes for appearance, building, and fire code.
Attractionpaula abdul 90s GIF Giphy
My Friend lives in a neighborhood with an HOA and it doesn't let you paint your room any colors except white or light grey, because it can "attract attention" if seen through a window.
Never Before 7
Can't be parked in the same reserved parking space for more than 72 hours. Kinda F'ed up they enforce that during a pandemic.
Can't park your vehicle with the front or rear bumper sticking over the curb.
Pick up trucks have to have a bed covering.
No kids toys, including bikes and scooters can be left outside when not being used.... got a fine for that one when my daughter took a break to eat lunch.
Can't have interior lights on past 10pm without have curtains closed.
Trash has to be put out behind your car after 9pm the night before it's picked up. It doesn't get picked up until around 7am. No fun when you have to leave before 7. No guidance on where to put it if you don't have a car or have to leave before 7. When asked, they tell me to just take it to the dump myself if I can't follow the rules.
A Rigged Election
Dumbest rule in ours is when they pass something it only requires the majority of people who voted to pass it but to stop it from passing you need a majority of the entire neighborhood.
So 50 ppl vote and 26 vote for it and it passes but if 26 vote against it, it doesn't count because you need 51% of the 2600 houses in the neighborhood to vote against it.
They up everyone's HOA bill if they need to replace a tree or some bushes, well one time our HOA bill was in the 7,000 because they had a tree break one of its limbs, fast forward a few weeks there are about 20 new small trees and the playground got remodeled.
I didn't even know about this rule until I sold my townhouse but the HOA had a stipulation that only certain loans could be used to purchase a townhouse. This excluded first time home buyer loans. That stupid rule cost me $8,000.
They had a stipulation that you had to use their financing or pay a $1500 fee if you used your own financing. I worked for a mortgage company and asked about this clause and was told it was illegal to penalize someone for using their own financing.
Fill the Gaps
Garage doors have to be closed all the way when closed with no gaps. The dumb part is that this rule was added because of me. I used to drive a tow truck and was often on call at night. There was already a rule that commercial vehicles couldn't be parked in the driveway or on the street, okay, fair enough, I'll park it in the garage. It wouldn't quite fit with the boom, so I'd lower the forks down and close the garage door on them. It wasn't too much longer after that everybody got a notice of the rule change and I had to park about a mile away after that.
The really dumb part is that when I confronted one of the board members about it, she claimed that had always been the rule and I knew about it when I moved in. Stuck to her story even when I showed her the letter of the rule change. Eventually, everyone got sick of that kind of crap and elected a new board, but I'd already quit that job so it was a pyrrhic victory at best.
Keep it Baredirecting homer simpson GIF Giphy
No car covers and no basketball hoops... Apparently, these are distracting to drivers. And nothing else distracts drivers going 20 mph, but it was very important to eliminate these very basic distractions.
The HOA representatives police like it's their job or something. Freaking damn losers, get a real hobby.
Into the Wastelands
Not me, but my parents--
- No BBQing between 4-7PM.
- First-floor curtain must be neutral colors
- Garage door can only be held open for more than 20 mins at a time unless you have permission (usually only granted if you are doing work around the house).
I would rather die than live in one of these wastelands. Just full of people who are mind numbing bored so they entertain themselves with petit-facism.
"Understanding & Consequences"
I feel like the only way to truly understand an HOA is to join and try and destroy it from within. Infiltration maybe the only key to change. Because some of these places are being run like a communist nation. And we all know how that usually turns out.
The existence of an HOA was enough to cause my wife and I to pass on buying what would otherwise have been our dream house.
That was at the top of our "absolutely won't live with" list when my husband and I were shopping for our home. We found a dream home, and as soon as we saw the area, my husband literally said, "This will have an HOA for sure." The first thing our realtor said when we met her at the front door was, "There's no HOA here." We bought that house for that and many other reasons.
but it's our heritage...
We got fined every time we were putting out Indian decorations for every celebration. Diwali lamps (tea lights in clay pots) outside our front door were a "fire hazard", chalk and powder driveway decorations that wash away with rain were an "eyesore" (but kids could draw hopscotch blocks), flower garlands during harvest season violated the gardening rules.... but people could put up whatever decorations (including garlands) they wanted for Christmas, Easter and Halloween.
get your own waiver...
I'm not in one currently, but I was looking at moving into a park with HOA fees earlier this year. No dogs. 1 cat okay, but required a waiver. WTF? You need a waiver for an inside cat? It's a neat way to make you buy a house but still feel like you're under a landlord's eye. Why not ask that if you have an aquarium you can only stock freshwater fish, only two of them, and you need a waiver for a castle.
Are you just bored?
My old condo had a rule that forced you to keep your recycling and trash bins against your house in the middle of your carport. This took up space meant for the length of your car/truck. Because of this rule, my extended cab tacoma stuck out into the street, leading to complaints about it sticking out in the street. The 80 year old busy body HOA lady told me I had to park the truck in the adjacent lot, not in my carport. I refused, since my tools would be stolen, then moved my bins into my walled in back patio, and parked my GD truck properly in my carport. Morons.
by the bladesurreal grass GIF by Mina Mir Giphy
My grandparents once told me someone from the HOA came around one time to measure their grass with a ruler to see if it was over the allowed length.
No 2 Wheels
Just bought a townhouse.
First thing I noticed in the rules (written in 1974) was "no motorcycles" but I bought one anyway and haven't heard anything yet so hopefully they realize how dumb and outdated that is.
There is a singular guy who runs the HOA. He doesn't get payed or anything, he just runs it because he's a power hungry moron. There is no legislature, he has complete power to enforce any policies he wants uncontested.
Right now, he's trying to fly drones through a private company to "map" out the neighborhood, even though it's 2021 and everyone has access to google maps. He's been hesitant though, because the residents have told him that if he flies drones through the neighborhood, they will be shot down regardless of légal repercussions.
I can't stand the guys he's a slimy "man" on a power trip because in the real world he's a looser.
We are not allowed plants. It's a golf course but, really? My edgy neighbor planted some basil. So far, so good. We put up with possible fly balls going through our porch while drinking our coffee each morning, I think you could let us grow the occasional freaking tomato.
Reasons and Laws
There's a rule that you can only have a cat if you fill out this absurd amount of paperwork beforehand, and No Dogs. This was a whole big thing. Two months after we moved in the monthly HOA newsletter had an item in it stating that people who had service dogs were allowed to have them because of Reasons and Laws, &c., worded in the most cranky, passive-aggressive phrasing I've ever seen used in a professional setting. It was hilarious.
I joined my board in large part to clean up the rules. Right now, they allow "cars" and prohibit other vehicles including "trucks"
What's a car? What's a truck? Are we using EPA rules? A specific dictionary? Is a motorcycle a car? This is literally a law school fact pattern that my professor used to introduce interpreting ambiguous laws.
As far as I can tell, the rule has never been enforced, so after 50 years it's probably waived out of any legal force, but if that's the case, why have it at all?
Same goes for the many references to faxing. I'm 95% sure no one has faxed the HOA anything lately. The rules are pure legalese, which I'm fine with as a lawyer, but most of our residents aren't lawyers, so they shouldn't have to parse through 50 pages of not-even-good legalese to figure out whether they can park an SUV in the HOA.
All for $66?
Not a rule, but still an HOA story. So, I bought my townhouse in July and read my closing paperwork very closely. It said there were no overdue payments to the HOA, but there are 2 $66 payments due in July and November. No problem, I pay them but start to wonder why this isn't just part of the monthly dues. So, Christmas comes around and I check my bank account. I'm missing $66 and my HOA took out my normal dues plus that much. I call them the following Monday and ask what the heck is going on.
They say "the previous owner didn't make his $66 payment in March, so you have to pay it." I say "no, I do not. That should have been disclosed in the closing paperwork. Any payments he didn't make at this point are between you and him. I've made all of my payments for this year, so what you're doing is theft. You're going to give me that $66 back or you'll be hearing from my attorney." I got that money back 3 days later.
More than one thing...
It's not so much one single rule. It's bending their interpretation of the rules to whatever they want and selectively choosing facts to back it up. And then fining you for taking too long when literally half the time is spent waiting for them to respond.
Bought an older home in an older sub. Builder came in and built new homes around the older homes. A bother but oh well. Then he tried to enforce rules from the newer sub on the older sub. That was not well received at all and we refused to "join." His HOA enforced "no sheds." Many of us in the old section have sheds. One of his houses caught fire in the garage and went up quickly. Fire department said it was because the family had no shed and gasoline, mower etc. were a safety hazard in the garage.
Be Original...Gay Hearts GIF Giphy
My gf parks in the garage and I park in the driveway. I was getting quotes to get a little roof to go over my driveway to protect my car from our crazy weather.
Block charter states that the house cannot be modified from its ORIGINAL design that was built in 1986 to include a roof extension either permanent or temporary. We get a severe hailstorm at least once every 2-3 years that causes billions in damage to homes and vehicles. But FORGET THAT we gotta make sure all our houses look similar.
Many HOA guidelines are cosmetic-oriented with the aim of preserving the cleanliness and uniformity of the association's zone.
As you can see, many of these strict HOA guidelines were out of personal interests for the HOA enforcers.
But hopefully, in exchange for paying HOA fees, residences are provided with killer amenities – not limited to tennis courts.
Unless residences are required to mow those as well.
We often find ourselves having to guess how to make things work and make things fit--in our lives, but also just in our possessions. Will these pants fit me? These shoes?
Will this screw fit my table? Will this charger fit my phone?
If everything was somehow standard, wouldn't it all be so much easier?
Here were some of those answers.
No More Vanity Sizes
Sizes for clothing.
Especially for shoes. How hard would it be to just list the sizes in centimeters (or inches if you're American)?
WHY DO WE USE STANDARD MEASUREMENTS FOR OUR CLOTHES, BUT THEY ARE DIFFERENT SIZES IN DIFFERENT BRANDS???
Calvin Klein's men's slacks: 32'' waist
Bar III men's slacks: 32'' waist
Perry Ellis slacks: 32'' waist
THEY ARE ALL DIFFERENT WAIST SIZES. WHYY?!?!?!?!
Ah Yes, Three Chilis
There's a standard for chili heat levels (the Scoville scale), but food manufacturers never use it. Instead, they use a varying number of chili icons which mean nothing at all.
It's always fun going to like a Thai restaurant in Canada and trying to figure out whether the chili icon means Thai spicy or Canadian spicy.
Ah Yes, This Could Kill Me
Household electrical voltages and sockets.
Interestingly enough, there was an attempt: since 1986, there is an international standard socket, IEC 60906-1. However, only South Africa has implemented it so far.
And it is unlikely it will ever be implemented in other countries, as the EU is even advising against it since 2017:
REFIT found that "the harmonisation of plug and socket outlet systems in Europe, by introducing changes in national wiring legislations (would have) important transitional periods (above 75 years)", and that the cost to "replace the old socket-outlets (and the corresponding plugs of the appliances being used)" was estimated at 100 billion Euro, "generating a huge environmental impact, producing some 700 000 tons of electrical waste". REFIT does not recommend harmonising the plugs and socket-outlet systems in Europe.
Can we just get a little consistency here? Please?!
After working in a grocery store, can diameters should only come in a maybe 4 sizes. And they should all stack.
But they don't. They never do.
I feel your pain. I hate those narrow jars and cans that are slightly narrower than 3 wires of the shelf so they tip over if you don't place them perfectly.
A Computer Mouse, Not A Little Baby Mouse
Modern rechargable batteries.
We spent years with standard size batteries. We are now stuck with proprietary batteries which aren't designed to be user replaceable and often dictate the life of the device.
Yes absolutely. I found this fact especially annoying when looking for a mouse. Most of the more expensive mice come with rechargeable batteries, and it seems that modern tech reviewers are claiming this is better than some standard double A.
All Standard, Yet None Standard
I worked in a hardware store long enough to learn that apparently everything is standardized.
"I need window screens."
Okay, what are your dimensions?
"It's a standard size window."
"I'm looking for a replacement ceiling fan."
Okay, do you want small blades, large blades? A modest 30" span or a robust 56"?
"Just standard size."
"Do you think this large, bulky, cumbersome commodity will fit in my vehicle?"
I don't know. How big your truck?
"It's a standard one."
protip: it's a sedan. it's always a sedan.
Welp, Here's Your Problem
Based on years of helping my Dad in his shop, doing bodywork on vehicles - fastenings. Bolts, screws. rivets, clips... the sheer amount of specialized fastenings and required tools is insane. Even the variety of types in single vehicles is excessive.
Not to mention many of them are so cheaply made that there is no reusing them.
So Many Sign Languages
Not necessarily something that should be standardised because it would affect many cultures negatively, but I've always wondered what it would be like if every country just spoke one language. Sign language should probably be standardised, but re-learning sign language for people who use it may be difficult and time-consuming
Perhaps We Need To Rethink Policing
Police responses to missing persons across the nation, and the information requirements for police reports to be filled out with specific and complete information at the first point of contact by the person reporting the missing person, regardless of the age, status, or suspected reason for disappearing.
Police should NEVER be allowed to decide a case isn't valid at the first point of contact.
A Recipe For A Lint Fire
The laundry exhaust receptacle in homes should be centered exactly eighteen inches (45.7cm) from the floor with eighteen inches (or 45.7 cm) of clearance on both sides.
The exhaust duct of a clothes dryer should be in the middle of the back of the machine, and centered eighteen inches/45.7 cm from the floor. The dryer should have adjustable feet to allow for slight errors in measurement.
Once this is done, a laundry dryer can be pushed into the wall and we won't need to craft a length of ducting to connect the two.
Just a little bit of sameness and consistency could really go a long way here.
Some things ought not be tried again.
Sure, they made sense the first time. It may have held charm, at least some sense of purpose on the second go around. But eventually, surely, an essential truth became clear: never again.
Reddit is apparently crawling with people carrying around that permanent grudge towards some thing they've done in the past.
Lucky for us, we can learn from their mistakes.
senorllama57 asked, "What is something you will never do again?"
There were, of course, plenty of people who discussed horrible jobs they've held in the past. They may have had little choice at the time, but now that it's all in the past they feel free to share how they really felt.
The Customer Always Seems To Be Wrong
"Work retail. I think every kid fresh out of high school should work a retail job for a year. It builds character." -- ProfessionalTheme415
"How did you get out!?! Lol. It's like a black hole where I work. Everyone that tries to leave comes back." -- threebillion6
A Lot Going On
"Work in a nursing home. The sights, screams and pleas Will haunt me forever." -- M_Lamora
"Honestly working in a nursing home was one of the most weird jobs I ever had. I've never been threatened so many times in my life. I once had a memory care resident ask me if I would help her jump a caregiver."
One After Another
"Work in a call center." -- Evilsmurfkiller
"Sucked the soul right out of me within a year." -- Bandana-mal
"I was at one for 2 and half years and it was not until I left I realized I had work-related depression. I was overeating, not eating, sleep deprived, slept all the time, I had such rage that would come out at times...
"I did not care what happened to me, I left because they were gonna fire me over something dumb because they just fire people for being there long. I left over a year ago, and I have not been this happy to wake up every day in years, my life is so much better now." -- UnusualLight0
Others discussed past struggles they've encountered within the romantic realm. Unfortunately, these lessons came with plenty of emotional struggle.
"Get married. It'll be 19 years this August and my marriage is my marriage. I reserve the right to have a girlfriend at some point if she passes away before I do, but she's the one and only wife, end of story."
"Ignore red flags when talking to someone I want to date. I've done it twice now, and both times sucked" -- YareYareYandere
"Listen to your gut. If something feels off, you're probably not imagining it." -- SurealGod
Don't Forget About You
"Okay first off I'm sorry if this might sound cringe :D . . . That would be hmm become too attached/codependent on a person. Whether it may be of a lover, friend, or just acquaintance."
"Idk if it's coincidence but they either end up gone one day or become total di**s when you least expect it and I'm forced to cut ties."
And some people chose to recall the things they were so certain would be fun and enjoyable, but turned out to be so not.
A Bad Ratio
"I made a super elaborate meal once. It was ... okay. Certainly not worth the effort involved." -- Astramancer_
"Take an hour to make something, only takes 15 minutes to eat. It's bullsh**." -- SurealGod
Hours and Hours
"Times Square on New Years' Eve. It was fun once, never need to do it again." -- AnswerGuy301
"I was going to answer the same thing. It seemed like it would be so much fun but now that I know what it entails — never again" -- hi_its_me
"I have never been and never understood the attraction of waiting for hours and hours in the shivering weather." -- amrodd
Think of Grease Splatters
"Prepare steaks when drunk" -- Kiaulunne
"Not for your reason, but same here. Cooked one at 2am after half a bottle of rum. Quickly ate and passed out after. Woke up around 8am dying for water and realised I left the gas stove on... So glad nothing burned down..." -- schofield101
"I will never get drunk again. Tipsy, buzzed, sure. Thats fine."
"But when I was in front of that toilet for an hour, being so weak I couldn't even sit up, having people constantly come in to check on me, worrying that I might have alcohol poisoning, that is exactly not a fun time"
So take some notes! Or maybe there were some true horrors you went through that this list seems to be lacking.
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You know what they say, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions". Because the people who have our best interests in mind typically have good intentions when they give us advice, but there's a chance that that advice can go horribly wrong.
Try not to follow the bad advice given here, because you don't want to get the results that these guys did.
The workplace can bring a cornucopia of terrible advice. Don’t follow these unless you want to get fired.
Bad jobs are usually not worth it.
Stick with a job no matter how bad it is. I stayed with a terrible job working retail, dealing with horrible customers and sexual harassment. I was told I wouldn't find anything better.
"No, no, you misunderstand. I said you wouldn't find anything better at making you feel like complete garbage."
This gets really creepy really fast.frustrated workplace GIFGiphy
"After you put in a job application, you need to call them at least once a day every day until they hire you."
Note: this did not get me hired. It got me called out by the HR person I was calling and forbidden to ever contact their facility again.
I work for a law firm that employees over 1500 people in the home office alone. Once I received a call from the building security saying, "Insert Name is here to speak with the owner." Well we are run by a committee so that's odd. Found out they just applied for a job and wanted to talk directly to the person that would potentially hire them. Told him the firm will contact them to schedule an interview. They refused to leave without "talking to the owner." Had security escort them out of the building.
This is absolutely not true.
"Sleep is for people who do not want success" great words from my uncle, it almost killed me.
Now I may be oversleeping.
Interpersonal relationships are also a big breeding ground for terrible advice. Don’t listen to any of these.
My father always tought me and my brother that "having friends is bad and in the end they will never be there for you" so everytime I told my father about my friends he would get kinda mad and give me the advice to stop talking to them.
Now I am afraid of people and have several trust issues, thanks dad.
This won’t end well.A Christmas Story GIF by filmeditorGiphy
In the fifth grade my teacher was talking about bullying, then she said "if anyone tries to bully you just agree with them." So the next time I got bullied I agreed with the bully and they bullied me more.
Dude one time I saw an anti bullying video that told the victims to just BE NICE TO THE BULLY. Like the bully was hurling insults and the victim was smiling and complimenting him. My first thought was about how much I hated the mere thought that this would work. My second thought was of how the people who came up with that method had clearly never been bullied.
When I met my now wife at the age of 19, one of my coworkers said that it's very important to start at the bottom with presents and work your way up, she still has the socks I gave her on our first anniversary on the wall over our bed as a reminder...
I'm still trying to teach my boyfriend about good presents and bad presents. Biscuits from the supermarket = bad present. Cheap unbranded laptop battery from China as my only present = bad present (and only lasted 2 months). Anything off my 7-page wishlist = good present. It's literally a list of things I want to receive as presents.
Can tell you from experience that this is a bad idea.
Had a falling out with some friends. My husband recommended I reach out to an old friend who ghosted me suddenly in a manner that induced some pretty severe abandonment trauma. Went for it anyways because "it's been so long, surely they changed". Am now experiencing the same things as last time.
When you follow bad advice, it can lead to mistakes that you just can’t come back from.
Buying a house is tricky.for sale dancing GIF by Lisa VertudachesGiphy
"Buy a home now before the prices go up!" -my FIL in 2006.
We bought in 2007 and paid $259,500 for our 1,300 sq ft house (we really couldn't afford it and had an 80/20 so we had 8% interest for one loan and 6% on the other) and in 2008 it was worth $97,000 so refinancing wasn't even an option. We watched all of our neighbors walk away or get foreclosed on but we kept paying our bills and as of this very moment our house is worth $462,000. I'm so happy we stuck it out, we both worked our @sses off and the house will be paid off in 2 years.
It worked out for us, it's a horrible idea. Especially since 1300 sq ft houses are $460+k
My heartbreaks for future generations, I honestly don't know how people are going to afford housing in the future.
It’s there for a reason.
"Never apply for any government assistance."
Cue years of suffering trying to work full-time with a painful disability. Quit a particularly terrible job, and wanted to apply for food aid until I could find another gig; a friend with lots of DHS experience recommended I apply for Social Security "just to get in the system." Turns out my disability was bad enough to get accepted the first time, which I wasn't expecting. Really could've used that support, oh, the 30+ previous years of my life.
Credit is important to have.
I was told to not get a credit card until after college. I was super fortunate to have my college paid for so I had no loans, car paid in cash, no credit card or anything to start building credit. Found myself out in the world at 22 years old with a credit score of 0.
So while a lot of this bad advice came from trusted people, oftentimes they were too misinformed to give that advice in the first place. Don't trust the word of one person--do your research, and make decisions for yourself.
It'll be way better in the long run
Every once in awhile, somebody comes along, enters your life, and catapults themselves to that awful, unique position at the top of your list of the worst people you have ever met.
Sometimes, the person's blindingly terrible behavior and overall essence is actually impressive. We ask ourselves, "how could a person like this actually exist on purpose?"
Alas, they do. And you have to deal with them. Or, if your lucky, you can carve out some distance.
Redditors shared descriptions of the worst people they've ever had the misfortune to meet. Some have escaped the relationship. Some are are still stuck in the clutches.
LoneStar202 asked, "Who is the worst person you have ever met?"
Some chose to talk about the acquaintances they simply couldn't help but encounter. External circumstances beyond their control made the stars align in the worst way possible.
Keeping the Peace
"There was this guy who used to come into the McDonald's where I did security overnight (yes, that's a job), and he was the biggest ahole I've ever met in my life."
"Ginger, 5'6 or so, named Colby, had a perpetual scowl on his face, looked for any reason to start a fight with anyone. He and his friend would come in when it's super busy, not order, and then yell at the staff that he paid and wasn't given a receipt in the hopes that they'd give him free food rather than deal with him."
"I kicked him out for six months on two separate occasions for coming in drunk and throwing things, drinking beer in the restaurant, starting fights, you name it. Only got in my face once and I never had to fight him, but I'm much bigger than him and the law is on my side."
"Not that I would necessarily have won. I'm big and strong, but I have no idea how to fight and he did. I called his bluffs because I was pretty sure he wouldn't attack me and he didn't."
"Funny, I just realized I've finally forgotten his last name. Not that I'd mention it. He might be less of a @ss now and he's no longer my business."
You Know 'Em
"I work with a real life, archetypal, Karen. She's two-faced, mean, anti-vax, and just generally the whole nine. The first interaction I ever had with her she had to make fun of me behind my back for being a dude with earrings."
"Recently kicked up a stink by making an 'anonymous' email address and emailing our HR department saying people were discriminating against folks not getting the covid vaccine.
"Luckily she's burned too many bridges for anyone to really take her crazy anymore but man is she frustrating to deal with."
Others discussed the family members that, for obvious reasons, they were forced to put up with for years and years. But even family isn't enough to keep a person like that around.
Marrying Into It
"It sounds cliche, but my ex-MIL. What made her the worst is that she was a covert POS."
"We always lived about 1k miles from them, so I didn't pick up on it for far, far too long, but goddamn, I've never met anyone with as much unacknowledged hate and cruelty in their heart."
A Thing of the Past
"My father. Cheater, never paid child support, verbally abusive to my mother, sister and I. Just all around bad dude."
"Haven't talked to him in about 15 years and am 100% ok with that."
So Many Problems
"My brother. He's like a cross between Kramer (Seinfeld, 'my newest thing' and mannerisms) and Frank from Its Always Sunny (illegal activity and completely illogical 'logic')."
"He's ripped me off for thousands of dollars (getting close to 5 figures). Constantly stealing anything he can, but claims 'borrowed' if caught with it. Been to jail 3 times and is currently on house arrest after over a year of probation violations. "
"The epitome of 'easier to say sorry than ask permission' (but the apologies are hollow) and 'what's yours is mine and what's mine is mine.' No consideration for anyone or anything. Manages to break virtually anything he touches. Hasn't had a job in over 1.5 years, but has been trying to fraudulently collect unemployment."
"Constantly thinks everyone is out to get him and people are stalking the camper he lives in (has security cameras that he watches frequently and often 'patrols' the area). Tries to break into locked doors and safe, and pulls the 'why don't you believe/trust me' line."
"I'm just scratching the surface here. He'd use your clippers/razor to shave his family jewels and not clean up the mess (something he's done multiple times)."
Finally, there were the stories of classmates. Whether it was high school, college, or even graduate school, there were enough people there all in one place that one or two rotten people were never far away.
"Guy from my high school was a wannabe thug. He ended up going to juvi junior year. After a year of juvi. He became a true criminal. Broke into people's homes. Stole from stores and got heavy into drugs."
"Then he eventually died after robbing the wrong store at gunpoint. The owner came out the back and shot him with a shotgun."
Wait for the Twist
"My gf's college classmate. Narcistic. Thought of himself as very important so he came into the church where we were graduating, on his HORSE. He damaged a 1000 or something-year-old church floor in Leiden. He thinks he didn't do anything wrong."
"And the weird thing is, we were graduating LAW SCHOOL"
Ride Like Lightning, Crash Like Thunder
"I had a classmate who wanted to become a stock broker and a millionaire. He said more than once, with absolute pride, 'When I'm rich I wont donate a single penny to the poor!' I asked him why and he said 'I have my own problems, and the poor being poor is not one of them.' "
"He opened his own business when he was 23 and was pretty successful, but suddenly a fire burned the place down while he was in it and he suffered from third degree burns all over his body."
"He later confessed setting the fire himself and was found guilty on insurance fraud. He's only 24 now and his professional life is basically over."
A Sudden Shift
"A teacher I once had. Didn't know me. Never spoke to me much."
"One day just randomly snapped at me. Yelling at me telling me that I had no future, that all the awards I got were to go to waste, that I the article I published which I spent hours working on and submitted didn't matter. That even though I was 14 and had many great achievements, I would end up just like that said teacher."
"Worst person I have ever encountered. Did collateral damage to my life as now I am a high school student with no more ambition. Wanna be a journalist? Wanna be a writer? A lawyer? Not anymore buddy."
Hopefully, you don't have too many of these people in your own life. But, let's face it, there's one or two people on your mind right now.
Here's hoping you managed to let go and get away.
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