|Photo courtesy of AcrylicArtist via Morguefile|
Some years ago, my husband and I were house hunting and came across two historical pieces of property. One house "looked" haunted, both inside and out. The other was absolutely pristine and beautiful. When we went to check out the haunted-looking one, I felt perfectly comfortable and would have gladly moved in. The pristine house, on the other hand, was a definite "no." The moment I walked in the door, I knew there was no way I could live there. When I asked the Realtor about the history, she mentioned the original owner had kept slaves.
Some states require you to tell prospective buyers if a house is haunted — just like you would disclose if there were a structural issue or mold and mildew. But this is a grey area of real estate. In Massachusetts, if the property is “psychologically impacted,” the law requires the seller disclose the information (ie. it may be haunted and people can feel these impacts, but not necessarily see them). In California, sellers must disclose "emotional defects and deaths" on the property only if they have occurred within the past three years. There have been lawsuits regarding haunted houses impacted by activity, so the recommendation is to either cleanse the house before sale, or come clean to potential buyers about the activity.
Here is a list of haunted houses that have been, or are currently up for sale. Unless they were already famous, these were very difficult to find. My guess is most people aren't disclosing if a house is haunted!
For Sale by Owner $144,0001217 Marion St, Dunmore, PA 18509
Owner reports the house is, "Slightly haunted. Nothing serious, though. e.g. The sounds of phantom footsteps. A strange knocking sound followed by a very quiet (hardly noticeable, even) scream at 3:13am, maybe once a week. Twice a week, tops. And the occasional ghastly visage lurking behind you in the bathroom mirror. Even still, this occurs very rarely and only in the second floor bathroom."
List Price: $3,900,000
Reports of paranormal activity date back to 1920, where it was believed that the original homeowner’s ghost, Orrin Granger, still remained. Although named the most haunted “Inn” in America, it is said to host some of the friendliest spirits.
List Price: $3,550,000
This 150-year-old house is known as one of the most haunted in New Orleans' French Quarter. The house's original owner was Madame LaLaurie, a Louisiana-born socialite and serial killer known for her involvement in the torture and murder of slaves.
507 E Saint Julian St , Savannah, Georgia
List Price: $2,400,000
The Exorcist HousePrice: $169,900 (asking)
St. Louis, Missouri