513 voters

People Describe The Strangest House Rules They've Seen In Other People's Homes

Updated September 18, 2018 3.9k votes 513 voters 15.7k views17 items

List RulesVote up for the rules you find strange. Vote down for the rules that seem too normal.

Every home has its quirks. Occasionally, those quirks translate into house rules or creepy family traditions designed for reasons unknown to houseguests, tenants, babysitters, and even future spouses. For example, being frugal and recycling are relatively regulated practices, but can saving go too far? These Redditors just might have the answer. 

Whether it be your new landlord's strict schedule or a revenge-driven dinner game, there is no limit to the number of quirky house rules most people would be surprised to hear about.


  • 1

    When Recycling Goes Too Far

    From Redditor /u/rainbowbright87:

    I was probably 10 or 11 and stayed over night for the first time with a friend of mine. Her family seemed normal, we had fun. I got up the next morning and all four were in the kitchen, at the table, eating cereal together. Her mom gets up and prepares a bowl for me, which was super nice of her. I eat it, then try to be nice in return and pour my leftover milk down the sink. Her mom stops me and hands me a partially full gallon jug and says, "no need to waste! Pour it in the cereal milk jug." I vividly recall how nauseated I was when I realized the milk I had just consumed was recycled. Never went back.

    Is this rule strange?
  • 2

    BYOTP: Bring Your Own Toilet Paper

    From Redditor /u/bunnylajoya8:

    A friend I visited a few times when I was a kid had really wacky bathroom rules. If I had to go [my friend's mom] would say, "one or two?" Then she would carefully count the number of squares she thought I would need and hand it to me. This was particularly embarrassing since I had a little crush on my friend and he was always there to see me say what I had to do. It was never enough. I always, always ended up poking a finger through the TP and they never had soap! I had to wash my hands with shampoo, once it was dog shampoo.

    Is this rule strange?
  • 3

    Big Brother Is Watching And Listening

    From Redditor /u/Mediocre-banana:

    My friend's parents had surveillance cameras in every room, including their kid's bedrooms. Anytime we were in a room without a parent, the surveillance camera had to be on. There were many times I’d walk into the kitchen after being in the game room or my friend’s bedroom and see the TV on, streaming surveillance from the room I was just in (it even streamed sound). If one of us said something the parents didn’t like while the cameras were on (they never told us when they were turned on) a parent would burst into the room and yell at us for saying something they didn’t like. A friend of mine got kicked out of the house because he jokingly put a napkin over one of the cameras.

    Is this rule strange?
  • 4

    "In For The Night" Has A Different Definition In This Household

    From Redditor /u/Kwasan:

    The parents of a girl I dated in high school had the rule of, "after dinner (usually 5 PM or 6 PM) lock yourselves in your rooms." So for most of the night her and her little sister were just locked in their rooms, only allowed to leave to use the bathroom. Before bed on a school night, they'd get called downstairs for any final things they needed before bed.

    Is this rule strange?