The closer you look, the weirder things get. And yes, that applies to buildings, too! When you actually take the time to look at your home—and we mean really LOOK at it—you might start to notice some incredibly bizarre design and building decisions. Suddenly, a ton of things stop making sense. Like why the roof of your house is curved. Or why this particular light switch turns on a lamp that’s way over there. Or why your outside terrace is made from the least weather-resistant materials (perhaps in the Universe).

These are all questions that digital influencer, lifestyle blogger, and prop stylist Joanna Hawley-McBride, aka Jojotastic, asks in her wonderfully weird and lightheartedly satirical TikTok video series, ‘Questions I have for the man who built my house.’ It’s a real treat for homeowners (both actual and prospective), architects, builders, and fans of designs, and we’re sharing Joanna’s videos with you today, dear Pandas.

Congratulations, you’ve taken your first step down the rabbit hole and out of the Matrix, and odds are that you’ll start noticing a bunch of quirks about your own home now, too. It’s good to have these questions because you develop your sense of taste and you start noticing bizarre and unusual decisions. And it’s a lot of fun giggling and trying to imagine what went through a builder’s head. Scroll down for Jojotastic’s funny and insightful TikToks (the link to each video is right underneath each pic), and let us know what you thought of them in the comments.

Bored Panda reached out to Joanna and she was kind enough to tell us all about her video series, moving to the remote cabin, and how she feels about having such a massive following. "Sometimes it blows my mind that I have such a large audience, especially because I'm just a woman in the woods with fancy chickens and satellite internet posting satirical videos of my house on the internet!" she quipped. Meanwhile, Ariane Sherine, the editor at ‘These Three Rooms,’ answered Bored Panda's questions about why builders make decisions that might feel illogical and how to embrace homes being imperfect. Read on for our full interviews with Joanna and Ariane, Pandas!

More info: TikTok | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Jojotastic.com

In 2020, Joanna moved to a remote cabin in the mountains outside of Seattle

Image credits: jojotastic

She then started the renovation process of turning it into a quirky dream house

Image credits: jojotastic

Image credits: jojotastic

Image credits: jojotastic

Joanna has been sharing the adventures of renovating and decorating her house on her social media accounts

Image credits: jojotastic

Image credits: jojotastic

Image credits: jojotastic

Image credits: jojotastic

However, she noticed some interesting details about the remote cabin that didn't make much sense and she decided to share them with her followers

Image credits: jojotastic.blog

"Questions I have for the man who built my house" is now a viral series on her TikTok channel

 
@jojotastic.blog The guy literally lives the next street over 👀 #homeownership #buyahousetheysaid #cabinlife #electricalwork #justwhyyyyyy #decortok ♬ Sneaky Snitch - Kevin MacLeod
#1

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

You couldn't have centered that light fixture? Okay. And while we are on the subject, why are you so close to the trim?
And let's not forget - there's an outlet!

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stardust
Community Member
3 months ago

Why is it so tinyyyy

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Joanna told Bored Panda that she started the 'Questions I have for the man who built my house' video series on a whim because her house is "truly one-of-a-kind and very, very quirky." While walking up the stairs, she realized just how hilarious it was that they had so many outlets. "I was curious to see if anyone else would find it comical and apparently many people do!" she shared.

"During the buying process of this home, I accidentally found the man who did in fact build it! Our town is a very remote, small community and I was searching online for a contractor to provide an estimate... and found him as the only one out here!" Joanna told us. "When I called, he recalled building the house in 1987, but said he's now retired. He wasn't especially friendly, so it was a quick call. Now, as we discover more and more 'features' of the house, we jokingly shout his name and ask WHYYY (for example the 17 outlets in our bedroom). I hope to meet him one day, but people really keep to themselves out here so I'm not holding my breath."

The digital influencer revealed to us that she's gotten two types of responses to her videos. Some people completely don't realize that the videos are satirical and think that she and her husband shouldn't have bought the home. Meanwhile, others are grateful that someone's posting realistic content about buying a real home. It acts as a nice contrast to the overly-polished, shiny pictures and videos found on social media. We think the truth is beautiful. With all of its imperfections.

#2

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

You couldn't have opted for a window that fit, instead, you cut into it and trimmed it like that?

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Alex Boyd
Community Member
3 months ago

Because non-standard-sized windows cost extra.

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"After owning a house that was 110+ years old prior to this one, we very much know that no home is perfect... nor is it ever fully finished/renovated. Especially in this housing market where it can feel like the only option is the rundown fixer-upper," she said.

Joanna stressed just how key inspections are during the buying process. They're vital when it comes to knowing what you're getting into. "Our buying process was pretty standard since we aren't in an area that's overwhelmingly desirable like city real estate is. I know that this step of the home buying process is often skipped now and can be challenging in competitive housing markets though. We had our home inspected and even brought out a trusted contractor to confirm a few things and provide an estimate. Then we were able to negotiate the buying price based on that info," she shared.

"Because we're handy and confident DIY types, our main focus during buying is to make sure that the big-ticket items are good: the roof, the plumbing, the well and septic (in this case), etc. Pretty much everything I've mentioned in the video series is something we can fix ourselves. Or it's something that we are learning to live with, like the multitudes of outlets and switches and the varying floor levels. It comes down to a cost/benefit ratio... is it worth it to dig into the crawlspace/concrete slab to put the plumbing underground in order to remove the steps up to the bathrooms? For us, the answer is no," she explained where the line between something that's a real issue and a quirk lies for her.

#3

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Why is there a curve on the roof?

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Tina B
Community Member
3 months ago

To squeeze the window in!😂😂

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Bored Panda was interested to get to know Joanna even better, so we asked her about her background, what keeps her passionate about she does, and what it feels like to have so many online fans.

"I've been working in the digital world since 2009 back when it was primarily just blogs... so I've been around! As more social platforms were created, my community grew and my content evolved as I purchased my first home, got married, and now as we have tackled cabin renovations. I'm lucky to be able to do what I do every day and am extremely grateful to everyone who's chosen to follow our journey and be part of it," she told us that her fans make her very happy.

#4

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

16 outlets in my bedroom alone. I know that there's more, I just haven't found them yet. And they are not even wired. They're just like wires hanging in a box.

jojotastic.blog Report

Kind Panda
Community Member
3 months ago

When you rearrange furniture you never know if an outlet will be close enough for lamps and other things. Wonder if the original builder added these for 'jic' but never needed them? Having 16 outlets in my bedroom would be exactly what I would want! I've got four extension cords or power cords in my room for lamps, desk fans, computers, t.v., Alexa, etc. "I need more power!"

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Nature and being in the mountains are what fuel Joanna's creativity. It's also a major part of why she and her husband left city life to move to the middle of nowhere.

"I'm happiest without phone service and usually come up with my best ideas while swimming in alpine lakes, hiking, or rock climbing. Couple that with being diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder called Birt-Hogg-Dubé and we knew we wanted to make a major life change. Thankfully, sharing this personal journey on my blog and social media channels have resonated with other people and inspired them while allowing me to continue creating content that I feel passionate about sharing!"

#5

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Why does this switch operate that outlet, especially when there's a light fixture right there. What am I plugging in there?

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stardust
Community Member
3 months ago (edited)

Better question: Why is there an outlet on the ceiling?

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Joanna is a major powerhouse over on Pinterest. She has a whopping 3.8 million followers on the image-sharing site, and odds are that you might have stumbled across one of her posts without even knowing it.

The influencer lives in an "extremely remote" cabin outside of Seattle, with her husband and two dogs. And they also have a flock of “fancy chickens and geese,” which sounds downright idyllic. Who wouldn’t want that? Joanna is remodeling a cabin in the North Cascades from the ‘80s, which is the focus of her ‘Questions I have for the man who built my house’ videos, though she posts about a lot of different things.

According to Ariane, the editor at 'These Three Rooms,' there can be a range of reasons why builders make decisions that homeowners might feel totally don't make sense. Not all of them are the hallmarks of villainous intent. Though... some definitely might be.

"Certain materials might be unavailable so they decide to use an unsuitable substitute, or they might have a surplus of the substitute that they want to use up. They might be misinformed and not very good at their job and think they're doing the right thing. Or they might be trying to save money and end up cutting corners as a result," she told Bored Panda.

#6

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Let’s discuss the various intersections of trim/logs/baseboards/etc. in our home coz IT'S A PARTY.

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Ara
Community Member
3 months ago

Ah, actually, it looks like a quirky cabin in the woods to me

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Some red flags that indicate that corners are being cut include builders using materials that aren't fit for purpose. Ariane explained that an example of this would be using non-weather-resistant woods like oak, ash, and pine outdoors.

"Or not following the correct process during an installation, such as not tanking a wetroom to ensure it's waterproof. I also had a builder who fitted decking on top of my garden but didn't put down a thick heavy-duty membrane over the original garden, so to this day weeds still grow through the decking. I learned from that mistake and now advise that you should always use licensed and vetted trades for this reason," she said that it's essential you work with professionals you can trust.

In Ariane's opinion, no house is ever truly 'finished.' "There's always some problem, something to fix or replace that would make it better. Realistically, as long as there's nothing major such as a faulty boiler or leaking roof, it's up to the homeowner what they're willing to live with," she told Bored Panda.

#7

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Left window is a different size than right window. Why?
By the way, all three of these are slightly different sizes.
Pretty sure there was a sale at the discount window store the day these were put in.

jojotastic.blog Report

Chich
Community Member
3 months ago (edited)

The guy probably built it as he had time and money and watched for sales. It is described as a "Remote cabin in the mountains" after all

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#8

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Why do I need to go upstairs to go to the bathroom? Or do laundry?
SO MANY LEVELS… one of my theories is that the house didn’t originally have plumbing so they added it by bumping up the floors for the pipes, but who even knows.

jojotastic.blog Report

Rost it
Community Member
3 months ago

This is common when you're unable to bury pipes. The more I read this the less interesting it is. It's like she's stretching the weirdness when it's clearly functional rather than for looks

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"I personally want to make my house as beautiful and well-functioning as possible because I'm obsessed with interiors and architecture, but other people may have zero interest in decor. Only you can decide what's right for you."

A bit of quirkiness can add charm to a home. It’s easy to embrace some mistakes that don’t impact our day-to-day lives. However, other flaws are far harder to forgive, like the use of cheap or inadequate materials, or simply cutting one corner too many during the building process.

#9

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

How "UNsquare" this corner is. Nothing about it is square. And why are there so many angles?

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stardust
Community Member
3 months ago

wait I actually kind of like it??

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#10

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

You go upstairs and then you have to take a step down to get to my office. Why?

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stardust
Community Member
3 months ago

For your daily dose of exercise

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However, some homeowners and architects fully embrace the weirdness and go all out. A while back, Bored Panda spoke to an urban planning expert from Sweden, who shared her philosophy and views about how public and private buildings look.

“Most of the time, the elements of the built environment should be in harmony amidst each other and with the surroundings. However, sometimes, something bolder and out-of-the-box might form an engaging contrast,” she said that, in her opinion, built environments should strive to stimulate our minds and senses, and should engage us. For her, one of the most powerful aspects of architecture is its ability to make us think.

“There are circumstances where the architecture should create a sense of calmness and safety, yet there are instances in which it is not bad if the architecture provokes us and makes us think, ‘Why don't I like the look of this building?’” the urban planning expert said that when it comes to private property, people should have the freedom to express themselves as they like. Nearly everything is allowed, according to her.

#11

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

This is a funnel. The drainage pipe didn't meet up with where the drain was for the shower. So they put a funnel in, and this funnel wasn't glued in place either. It was just resting there. The drainage pipe that connects to the sewer system was probably off by an inch or so, so they just put a funnel in there, but they didn't attach the funnel to anything.

jojotastic.blog Report

Jo Cooper
Community Member
3 months ago

My bathroom drain is a hole in the floor with a little grate thingy, which fell down the hole. Just waiting for the snakes to find out in the summer. PS in Australia here

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See Also on Bored Panda
#12

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

I want to know why our front porch is made of the least weather-friendly material ever known to mankind? Period.com. We got two feet of snow this past winter. And we live in the Pacific Northwest, so it rains all of the time. And this material is not supposed to get wet unless it's been painted. Why, why would you do that? Why?

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CindyLouWho1209
Community Member
3 months ago

Why would you buy a house knowing that it had these issues? Did you get a home inspection before you bought it?

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“Quirky architecture comes from our innate desire to demonstrate our uniqueness. However, not everyone who has the means has an average taste for aesthetics. Yet, as long as it is for the people who inhabit or use their private space, I mean why not?” she shared her thoughts with Bored Panda.

“But, I think that we should not cross that thin line where architecture becomes reserved for only the wealthy and for those with ‘good taste’ (whoever decides that). I’m only talking about private property here, though. When it comes to public space, there should be a consensus between the public and the professional about the design,” she said.

The expert shared some of her thoughts about design, too. “Firstly, even though I often advocate for unconventionally looking buildings, I do not encourage purposefully provocative architecture. The building should be designed with the intention to accommodate and protect society. It should create a sense of safety but not be boring,” said that there has to be a balance between what the designer wants and what the community might need.

#13

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Why is there unpainted wood behind the glass in the window?

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I would die for cats
Community Member
3 months ago

They where short on paint?

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#14

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

There's this outlet which is controlled by a switch down there. Why?

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Leara Bridges Brown
Community Member
3 months ago

Well obviously it's came in handy. You're plugged into it.

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Accessibility, inclusiveness, and empowerment should all ideally be key parts of any architectural project. “Also, I prefer somewhat complex but systemic designs. Minimalistic and box-like floor plans are good in some cases where easy access is necessary (for example, hospitals) yet they can be completely mind-numbing while more complex floor plan designs are more mind-stimulating (for example, good for schools, in my opinion).”

#15

House-Design-Architecture-Fails-Tiktok-Jojotastic

Why there are 22 pieces of trim? And they didn't even fill the screw holes.

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Dave Hinckley
Community Member
3 months ago (edited)

The Previous Male Occupant of my house built a garage that has 5 separate pueces of wood for a 20-foot ridge beam. Also, one wall has 23 separate pieces of plywood jigsawed together. He went dumpster-diving at a development under construction and used cutoffs. I could go on and on.

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After going viral, Joanna explained that the series is satire and she absolutely loves her quirky house

Here's how some people reacted to the video series