Haunted houses aren’t necessarily just fables made up from neighborhood kids. There are some homes on the market that simply give off a type of energy that can’t quite be explained.
Movie director, Michael Chaves, decided to write a screenplay on this very idea. In the feature film, The Maiden, the plot is centred around a real estate agent who struggles to sell a home with an eerie past.
It was after becoming intrigued by stories of a haunted house combined with North American’s real estate crash that Chaves became curious about just how hard it would be for the REALTOR® to have to sell this type of home.
How a REALTOR® was able to sell a stigmatized property
To non-REALTORS®, a spooky home may be considered as a ‘haunted house’, though, among the real estate community, these homes are referred to as a “stigmatized property”
Stigmatized properties are considered as homes that either the buyer or seller may be reluctant in living in or selling the home for reasons that are unrelated to its physical condition or the property’s physical features. Rather, these could be reasons due to events that have taken place in the home such as a long illness, death or even worse, a murder. As a result the home is often deemed as being “haunted” due to its negative past.
Selling one of these homes has proven to be difficult as REALTOR and Real Estate Investment Specialist, Justin Li, explained.
Justin explained that there was an interesting tie to the home.
Call it a coincidence or maybe not - in the Summer of 1990, just two months after a family had moved into the home knowing of its negative Feng Shui, the husband and father of two who resided in the home died in a severe car crash while on his way home. While the death did not occur in the home, news of the death raised some eyebrows of residents who has known of its past.
Needless to say the advice from the buyer’s agent was not taken as they did not believe that something as minor as an intersection in front of the home could later impact them gravely.
With all of this information in tow, Justin took no chances when it came time for him to sell the home. He hired a Feng Shui practitioner to conduct an ancient ceremony which comprises of burning incense and offering food and gifts to ‘honor’ the lingering spirits of the deceased.
A REALTORS® legal obligation to disclose information about the home’s past
Whether we like to believe in haunted houses or not, certain states in the U.S. and provinces in Canada require a REALTOR to disclose every single aspect of a property’s past - both in the physical and supernatural sense.
Though in Justin’s case, most interested buyers would point out the home’s indiscretions to him before he even got the chance.
What did Justin do to put his client at ease?
In spite of the home’s stigmatized past, Justin and his team was able to sell the home Christmas Eve of 2015.
When asked if he knew if the home’s new residents had taken the advice of the Feng Shui practitioner, Justin said,