Article Lead Image


‘Wait, wait, wait. This is paper?’: Tenant finds a ‘landlord special’ in her home

‘Previous homeowners….woooooow … Seriously folks?’


Braden Bjella


A popular topic of discussion on TikTok is the “landlord special”—a subpar repair job performed by a landlord before a tenant moves into a property.

The landlord special takes many forms; for example, a landlord may simply paint over hair left by previous tenants, or, in one case,  cover a box of raisins in paint as part of a hastily-performed fix.

Knowing that landlords will often go to extreme lengths to keep security deposits, many tenants attempt their own “landlord specials” before handing the keys back to the property owner. Frequently, these involve cutting the same corners as the landlords themselves, as shown in a recent viral video in which a tenant covered a hole in the wall with a piece of paper and painted over it.

However, this leaves the next tenant to handle the issue, as TikTok user @justthem0m recently discovered. In a video with over 1.6 million views stitching with the paper hack, the TikToker realizes that someone had attempted the same low-grade fix in her residence.

@justthem0m #stitch with @Mels💕 Previous homeowners….woooooow 🤦🏻‍♀️ Seriously folks? #previoushomeownerssuck #omg #lol #isthisreallife #homeownerdiy #diyhacks #nonono #landlordspecial #realestatefail #diyfail #fypシ #diytok #homeownerproblems #fml ♬ original sound – Just The Mom

“Wait, wait, wait. This is paper?” she asks in the video, poking a divot in the wall. The divot flexes, indicating that it likely is, in fact, paper.

“Previous homeowners….woooooow,” she wrote in the caption. “Seriously folks?”

In a TikTok direct message exchange with the Daily Dot, @justthem0m confirmed that the repair was not performed by a landlord, but the previous homeowner.

“The house has been nicknamed the little house of horrors (exaggeration) for all the crazy surprises it’s had,” she explained. “Based on all the other issues with this house, [this] was definitely a band aid repair.”

That said, she doesn’t plan to fix it anytime soon. She says she’s just handling each problem “as it comes because of finances,” and as for this specific issue, “this patch is going to hang out for a bit while I handle some other issues. It makes me smile when I walk by it now.”

In the comments section, users shared their own dealings with “landlord specials.”

“I just found out my landlords used cardboard as my windowsill,” wrote a user.

“Found a hole covered with a krispy kreme donuts box lol,” added another.

“My landlord filled a hole with scraps of acrylic leftover from my laser cut jewellery era,” claimed a third.

That said, others admitted to performing similar repairs.

“I did paper and plaster and it looks just like the wall did before,” said a commenter.

“I put a hole in my last apartment from a doorknob and stuffed it with rolled up cardboard,” alleged a second.

For TikTokers who are currently looking for a home, @justthem0m has some advice to ease the process and prevent issues like these from arising in the future.

“Folks should be aware of ‘gaslighting,’ including being rushed during the home buying process [by] the sellers and the seller’s agent,” she explained. “Always hire your own home inspector and make sure you’re present during the inspection. If you’re there, it’s much less likely they’ll be paid off to massage their report. And maybe visit more than a few times before signing…without the seller’s agent.”

We crawl the web so you don’t have to.
Sign up for the Daily Dot newsletter to get the best and worst of the internet in your inbox every day.
Sign up now for free
The Daily Dot