When a client tells you they have felt cold spots, seen shadows move in a particular room and furniture has moved without explanation, what do you do?

Asked by Paris and Connor MacIvor, Santa Clarita, CA Thu Nov 25, 2010

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23
Tony Lewis, Agent, Valencia, CA
Thu Nov 25, 2010
BEST ANSWER
It depends on whether this is a home they wanted t buy or sell! For a buyer it is time to move on to the next property. For a seller this is a disclosure that needs to be written in a manner that will not turn off every potential buyer.
Web Reference:  http://www.TonyLewis.com
1 vote
John Souerbry, Agent, Fairfield, CA
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Excellent question. I manage a single family rental that has ghosts. The tenant mentioned the shadows, voices and footstep noises, but said they didn't feel threatened so it was no big deal. That tenant left to buy a home, and before the new tenant moved in we had a paranormal team come to the property to take a look. Turned out there are 2 ghosts, a man upstairs and a woman downstairs. One of the team saw the woman very clearly and the lead investigator recorded a brief conversation with the upstairs ghost. The painting and cleaning crews saw shadows, heard footsteps and voices, and experienced the cold spots during turnover maintenance. The new tenants were friends of the old tenants and had witnessed some of the ghostly noises when visiting, so they are also not bothered by them. The owner is planning to sell the house in 1 to 2 years, so we've been talking about how we should disclose the situation. We're waiting for an opinion from our real estate attorney, but my belief is that we should add a page to the seller's disclosure summarizing the situation. We believe the ghosts did not die on the premises within the last 3 years, which requires disclosure, but I'd want to know about this situation if I was moving my family into the home.
On the night before the painters were to begin, I stopped by the house at about 10pm to drop off the paint. I opened the front door and stacked the paint cans in the living room where the painters would find them, but left the lights off. Before leaving, I stood quietly in the dark and asked the ghosts if they wanted to speak with me. Not a sound. Seems not even ghosts want to talk with agents these days.
5 votes
Alex Meguerd…, Agent, Valencia, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
Good question! Love the responses!
Web Reference:  http://www.AlexLAEstates.com
3 votes
Jeanne Feeni…, Agent, Basking Ridge, NJ
Sat Nov 27, 2010
I find this very interesting and have enjoyed reading the responses - I have no direct experience from which to contribute advice...however wanted to award a thumbs up to John for sharing his own experience - very helpful and also I like you humor, "Seems not even ghosts want to talk with agents these days." You made me laugh out loud, very clever!

Though I hope never to encounter this situation, it is good to know that even the paranormal is discussed here!

Best,
Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service
Web Reference:  http://www.feenick.com
2 votes
Emily Knell, Agent, Huntington Beach, CA
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Call Penn State University & the Paranormal State Team!

Go Nittany Lions!

EmilyKnell1@yahoo.com
562-430-3053 cell
2 votes
Guy Gimenez, Agent, Austin, TX
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Call Ghostbusters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2 votes
William Boyd, Agent, Santa Clarita, CA
Sun May 5, 2013
I would like to see these things for myself though, maybe I could make a new friend. If it was my listing, I would always try to show it on a bright sunny day and not after dark.

I have had experiences with the spirit world twice in my life and they were very positive. So, I guess it is not the situation that causes stress, it is how you perceive it
1 vote
Edith Karoli…, Agent, Winnetka, IL
Mon Nov 29, 2010
I would run...... Not sure what else to say.....
Not only would I feel that this would become a problem listing....for various reasons....
but shadows and moving furniture, it is hard enough to sell homes in this market
who needs shadows and moving furniture.....

But I am reading with interest other Agents' answers.
Happy Selling to all...
Edith YourRealtor4Life and Chicago Connection
Working always in the very BEST interest of her clients
EdithSellsHomes@gmail.com
Web Reference:  http://tinyurl.com/MeetEdith
1 vote
Frank Dolski, Agent, Lahaska, PA
Sat Nov 27, 2010
See if the ghosts have any liquid money? Perhaps they could buy the home?
1 vote
Frank Dolski, Agent, Lahaska, PA
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Recommend a counselor? Why post something like this????
1 vote
William Boyd, Agent, Santa Clarita, CA
Sun May 5, 2013
There is nothing you can do. Try showing them some different home
0 votes
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
There is so much we don't understand, between heaven and earth.
Did I get that quote right?
Given all the choices around; why would a ghost choose Santa Clarita? I would opt for Las Gatos.
0 votes
Melissa Goss, , Center Moriches, NY
Tue Apr 30, 2013
I try not to hold open houses at those types of homes... I get scared
0 votes
., , 92705
Sun Feb 6, 2011
Disclose it.
Required or not, the new owners should be told about the inhabitants they are about to inherit.

Gives me the shivers!
I commend you Connor for taking on this property.

Oh and call a priest, ghost hunters, a paranormal team, or that lady from Poltergeist!!!

Good luck!!
0 votes
Tony Lewis, Agent, Valencia, CA
Sat Feb 5, 2011
Tell them to disclose it!
Web Reference:  http://www.TonyLewis.com
0 votes
Melia and Ol…, Agent, Rancho Santa Fe, CA
Mon Dec 6, 2010
Tell them to stop watching horror flicks :)
0 votes
Dorene Slavi…, Agent, Torrance, CA
Mon Dec 6, 2010
Dear Connor and Paris..

Um ....Well... I would consider carefully how badly I wanted such a client..first it's "cold spots" then it's "cold feet!"

Good Luck..!
Web Reference:  http://www.doreneslavitz.com
0 votes
Myra Gouger, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Sat Nov 27, 2010
I had a listing with a lady like this. When I went to take the listing, she told me I was to only wear black so the ghosts did not see me coming into the home!!! So, naturally I wore black. As I was going through the rooms for the pictures she said that she was limited to one room in the home because the ghosts were in the others. I opened the door to the second bedroom and she told me the ghosts had made the mess in the room. Clothes were strewn all about as if staged in a movie fight scene. You guessed it; the ghosts were fighting!!! While I am writing up the listing, she started getting agitated "Do you hear that, did you see that, she asked?" I did not hear or see anything. This went on throughout the whole time I was there. I have to admit this was one of the most unusual real estate listings I ever took!!! When I left she told me they would follow me to the car. Since you have so many papers to carry as a realtor, I was hoping they would at least open the car door for me!!! No such luck. Real estate - you gotta love it. Some days you are talking to ghosts and the next you are wrestling alligators and 900 lb gorillas!!!
0 votes
Cameron Novak, Agent, Corona, CA
Sat Nov 27, 2010
I don't even know what to say Connor. LOL. Sounds like a double ender to me.... Sell her home and find her a replacement. Preferably one without ghosts ;-)

Better yet... next time... choose a client with a LESS ACTIVE imagination.
0 votes
Phil Rotondo, Agent, Melbourne, FL
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Connor and Paris;
Easy.....
Only show them homes that are vacant with no air conditioning and no windows.
Web Reference:  http://www.321property.com
0 votes
Paris and Co…, Agent, Santa Clarita, CA
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Happy ThanksGiving to you all. And Frank, because it is true!!! I thought we could turn to each other for help. But apparently not from Frank. Thank the rest of you for your help. I'll use your resources. My best.
0 votes
Lyle Wolf, Agent, Morristown, NJ
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Connor and Paris
Have them check out the following organizations that investigate paranormal activity in California:
http://www.paranormalinvestigatorsofsocal.org/
http://www.ap-investigations.com/
http://california-paranormal-investigators.com/
http://www.calparainvestigations.org/
0 votes
Walter 'Skip'…, Agent, Brea, CA
Thu Nov 25, 2010
Hi Connor,
I assume you are referring to the disclosure issues. I just recently read something about disclosing such things, although I cannot remember where. I would check the CAR website or call the legal hotline.
Good luck,
0 votes
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