Buying/Selling Haunted Houses
Do people selling homes/properties in Florida have to disclose that the house is haunted?
At this time Florida does not require specific disclosure by a seller of a haunted house. However, with that said, Florida does require disclosure of anything that could materially affect the value of a property. Regardless if it is required to be disclosed or not, it is always best to be an informed buyer by asking all the right questions and having a good professional helping you.
Does having a ghost on premises affect the selling price of a property?
Not all paranormal activity has an impact on property value. If buyers believe in paranormal activity then haunted properties are generally more valuable to them but if a buyer doesn't believe in paranormal activity nor is sensitive to paranormal activity then there usually is no impact on the value.
There are buyers who seek out property that is suspected to be occupied by the spirit realm. In fact, some commercial sites have benefited from being noted as haunted sites. Property value in Casadaga Florida, a spiritual community, increases with the possibility of a haunting. However, there are sites that have dropped in value, such as the Amity House in Amityville New York, due to the alleged activity which was later acclaimed to be a hoax.
Is my house haunted?
How do I know if a ghost is present in my home or business?
A haunting does not always have to be overt and there are subtle signs of a spectral presence. These can include an uncomfortable feeling in a particular room or at a particular time for an unknown reason, the sensation of being watched when no one is present, a sensation of hostility directed to you from an unknown source, a sensation of peace/love/comfort directed to you from an unknown source. [Note: The over-consumption of caffeine can result in similar sensations].
There are also more direct signs of haunted activity. These include:
Seeing a shadow/shadowy figure(s): Nondescript shadow forms that can sometimes emit a sensation of negativity (though are not necessarily negative).
Peripheral vision manifestations: Seeing movement out of the corner of the eye (barring medical conditions or natural phenomena).
Full manifestation of an entity: Entities can look solid, misty, or solid with transparent or misty parts (often fading below the knee, or seeming solid until they fade away as the viewer watches).
Temperature fluctuations: Cold drafts or cold spots found only in a certain location (Barring drafts created by the a/c or heating units, fans, and windows). Areas of the location that are abnormally cold, centralized locations, or columns, of coldness that won't go away, or cold areas that move through the house (These also manifest as pockets of heat, or warm sensations).
Psychokenetic activity (apportation): the paranormal transference or appearance of an object. This may also relate to small household objects that disappear, cannot be found, but "reappear" in either the exact location first searched or in an area where it will be easily found. Metal objects, including keys, coins, and jewelry, seem to be most often affected.
Visual confirmation of objects moving, including the abnormal behavior of lights or doors; locked areas becoming (unexplainably) unlocked or visa versa.
Phone calls from the dead: This is a rather uncertain form of study. This asserts that the dead attempt to contact us through any means possible, including through the telephone. This can relate to phones ringing at the exact time of a person's death (or on the anniversary of the death), strange (unnatural) voices on the other end of the line, disconnected phone numbers working, etc.
Sounds: Unexplained instances of popping or sizzling, rustling, voices, footsteps, objects moving, and/or doors/windows slamming.
Can ghosts manifest in dreams?
The dream state has long been described as a method for ghostly communication and paranormal awareness dating to the ancient epics of The Epic of Gilgamesh and The Iliad. The dream period certainly relates to an altered state of brain and mental activity. However, it is hard to put full stock in dreams as always conveying ghostly presences. There are many factors that can impact dreams, including medications, sleeping position, stress levels, and even temperature.
Paranormalists may refer to the old hag syndrome, which happens during the gray state period of sleep. The dreamer describes the inability to breath or move and often sees a presence in the room. This presence, sometimes described as an old woman, is sometimes seen sitting on the individual, making it hard to breathe. Old hag syndrome may relate to a form of sleep paralysis in which the mind awakens before the body. Both states are often described as frightening and disorienting.
Lucid state dreams are produced by an individual who can control the mindscape while dreaming. This may be achieved accidentally or through practiced meditation techniques. Here, the dead may be produced as part of the dream, as the circumstances of the dream reality are altered by the dreamer.
My pet is acting up in certain areas of the house. Does this mean that s/he is sensing a ghost?
The theory behind animal interactions with ghosts is also very ancient. Cultures across the world attribute animals, from dogs and cats to cattle and horses, as sensing supernatural presences. Paranormalists often utilize the theory that animals do not reason in the same manner as humans. Rather than analyze their circumstances, they appear to naturally embrace what they see as real. There are cases, several which have been personally observed, in which animals act up in the presences of investigators and in conjunction with paranormal phenomena.
However, the drawback to animal behavior is that it is often generalized into statements as the animal appears frightened, avoids certain rooms, or watching something that its owner cannot see. Though owners are often in-tune with their animals and aberrant behaviors, there may be non-paranormal phenomena that create this behavior. Past experiences, possibly unknown to the owner, or undiagnosed health issues could be a factor. While there has been a greater emphasis on studying animal cognition, animal behavior still remains enigmatic at times.
Regardless of the reason, an animal should not be forced into any area where s/he is not comfortable.
Actions/What to do
What should I do if I think my home is haunted?
Don’t panic. Remember that you, the living, belong to the material world. This is your realm and your space. Ghosts rarely hurt an individual, though they may do things that make others feel uncomfortable. If phenomena start to happen, document it. Note the place, time, who was present, and the circumstances that preceded the phenomena. Keep a running log of activity in case a pattern emerges.
It is possible to research the history of a location. Try to find the following information:
There are numerous books on haunted history of this area that might help determine if the local area is haunted. We also recommend checking on the history of the house, property, or neighborhood with the local newspaper sites (http://www.tampabay.com/, www.tbo.com). You can do a basic Google search of the property, as your real estate agent for any history, and interview your neighbors about the area.
Try to find the following basic information:
What was on the property prior to this structure?
Information on prior home owners
Is there a history of deaths (natural or otherwise) or violence on the property?
Recent remodeling or refurbishing of the property
Consider the following: Has anyone else reported activity? Did the property have a reputation of being haunted before you bought it? Did the property owners change at a relatively frequent rate? If so, is there a reason why?
I've determined that I want my house to have a paranormal investigation. What do I do now?
Find a group with a long history. Make sure that they have done other cases.
Check out the team's philosophy and research methods.
Talk to the team lead. Make sure that you are comfortable with them and have no additional questions.
Ask for background information and/or references.
Ask friends for their recommendations.