We bought this 1914 bungalow from a woman whose family owned it for 70 years. With all that history and an interest in collecting (plus quite a bit of cash which they didn't spend ON the house), they'd developed quite a houseful of things from around the world. Like this:
As a result, we gave the seller a 30-day rent-back period after the official "closing" to sort through and remove her family possessions (well, we didn't charge her any rent, actually. Just utilities...we felt sympathy for her...there were so many things to sort through). Then, three days before she was to move, we received a letter...
The seller had not removed all of her things and didn't intend to. She also did not clean. She told us that since she was "officially" a renter, not a seller, that she was within her rights to leave the house in any condition she wanted to. Surprise!! We were caught a bit off guard, as you might expect. That night we went through the house and found that 50% of what was originally there still remained. She had hired an auction house to come through and they took most of the furniture. We found books, pottery, glass, paper, trash, kitchenware, rocks (really) and boxes and boxes and more boxes.
After some discussion, we ended up negotiating an agreement. We were rather overwhelmed (we had to rent storage for our own things for an additional month and delay our move into the house) but figured we could rent a dumpster to quickly get to the task of renovating our new home. But then came the second surprise--some of the things in the house were really cool! (There was still a lot of trash and dirt too.) So, yes, it has set back our renovation by months and months. And we are finding many more things to fix in the house as we peel back the layers of grime and "stuff".
We've decide to make lemonade out of these lemons and share the experience. So, we're going to start posting photos of the items we've found. Well, some of the 1000's. We'll just keep plugging away until you have no more patience to peek in here with us.
To see all the photos we've taken so far click here and scroll down. (Just a warning--there are lots of photos to download!!)
Update: We're now offering some of these items for sale via our "Virtual Estate Sale." To see what we're offering click here.