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Is Your Dream Home in the District Haunted?

Do you believe that houses can be haunted?  Do you believe you should know of the real or rumored past of your new home in the District?

This may seem just plain crazy, but what you aren’t told is an all-too-real aspect of buying a new home - unless it happens to you.  Because many jurisdictions, including the District, have in place what are known as “stigmatized property laws,” Realtors® aren't allowed to disclose whether or not a house is haunted. It's treated the same as discussing anything that may negatively impact a prospective buyer's view of a given neighborhood or property.

Some Realtors® are rigid adherents to the law; others believe that, with the permission of the seller, it's advisable to disclose everything about a property. As Washington real estate lawyer notes, “It goes with termites and leaky roofs...the more you disclose, the better. In fact, a ghost might turn out to be a good selling point.”

Regardless of your agent's opinion on the matter, the looming question remains: Are ghosts a serious issue in the Washington area? According to Bobbie Lescar, founder and director of the Virginia Ghosts and Hauntings Research Society, “Hauntings have picked up” recently. The organization receives 70-80 calls and emails each day. Her group will investigate and document empirical evidence, but they do not intervene; her volunteer staff usually conducts one full-scale investigation each month.

Lawana Holland, owner of the Washington, DC Ghost Hunting Page, notes that individuals should first look for natural causes, such as “an electrical problem or power lines,” at the root of what they believe is a haunting. She admits that sometimes, events do appear to be truly unnatural.

The founder of the Maryland Ghost and Spirit Association, Beverly Litsinger, says that “There are a lot of people who believe.” She also notes that, “People often make peace with ghosts...and just like you, they don't like to be ignored.”

What do you think about this?  Do you believe that houses can be haunted? Would you move into a home with that reputation?  Would you mind having a ghost as a roommate? Should you be warned?

Owning a home that's haunted – or even possibly haunted – can be an exciting undertaking. Are you planning to buy or sell a home in the DC area? The Menkiti Group is provides exemplary service, based on our core values of knowledge, team, community, and excellence. Contact the Menkiti Group today to discuss your real estate needs; based in Brookland, we are the premier real estate service company in the DC area.

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Reader Comments (3)

Asking the historical background of one's property is supposedly the most important information that every buyer should ask for. But sometimes the new owner of the property is the last one to know of the house background or history. So you must be wise in choosing the home you ever dreamed of by totally inspecting the every single detail of the property.
November 18, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterserendipity willy
It would suck to buy a home that you are not comfortable in, not satisfied with, and scared to be in. One suggestion might be to give vacation deals for the property you want to sell. This allows you try before you buy, which decreases the chances of neglecting a great deal. The potential buyer also gets first hand experience of the property and neighborhood for themselves and there is nothing better that first hand accounts.
November 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRonnie Arnold
This is an interesting post. Ghosts, spirits, apparitions, or whatever they may be, are usually something that most people don't believe until they see, which is pretty much where I stand. I don't believe nor disbelieve in supernatural activity, but I do have a great interest in doing my own research. So my answer to whether I would buy a house that was rumored to be haunted would be, "Yes"... Actually, I would probably rent first =P. I would love to find out for myself.

I will say one thing though... I love those ghost hunting shows, and they always catch unexplainable things, which makes you wonder.
November 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTry Before You Buy

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