Recently a family member spotted an article of interest in House Beautiful to the readers of this blog: Dream Job Alert: Live in a Haunted Ghost Town — for Free! (Talk about having interesting neighbors.)
Here’s a snippet – click on the link below to see the entire article.
It may not be tops on your bucket list, but admit it: The idea of staying, even just for a night, in a ghost town sounds intriguing. Well, now you can — and all for free. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is looking for volunteers to help manage Garnet Ghost Town, a Montana mining town more that’s more than 100 years old, and has been mostly abandoned for nearly that long.
As part of the deal, residents will assist the full-time professional staff in guiding tours, maintaining the historic structures, and brushing and cutting trails. Fans of modern amenities, beware: The town has no electricity, running water, or wi-fi. But housing is free, and the Bureau will even provide a small stipend to volunteers.
Is your idea of a great vacation one in which you stay in a haunted hotel room? It’s not mine – I don’t actually want to sleep with ghosts – but apparently many of my readers love the idea! So today’s your lucky day, if that’s your goal. There’s a wonderful resource for finding haunted hotel rooms: http://www.hauntedrooms.com.
A quick look at the site reveals an intuitive layout (would you expect less for something related to the paranormal?). The visitor can use a quick search tool by city or state, or instead navigate a map to located the ideal haunt.
Additionally, if you are the proprietor of a spooky site, you may also add your abode to the directory.
Right now there are over 100 hotels listed, with more coming online all the time.
Finally, this site is an expansion of another one in Great Britain, so for those of you who really want to go the extra mile, have a look at this website too: www.hauntedrooms.co.uk .
Realtor.com ran a consumer survey Oct 1 – Oct 3 2012 regarding home buyers and their interest in purchasing haunted real estate. Surprisingly, 29% would buy a home with a reputation of being haunted – but only if they got a substantial discount in the price, 20% or more off from an otherwise normal house. For a small minority, the property would be worth more if haunted (just 2%).
Of the approximately 1900 people polled, 35% said that they would not consider purchasing a home which was said to be haunted, 32% said they would consider it and 33% said they might. In the U.S. today, about half of all Americans believe in ghosts – an interesting point to factor in. It is not surprising that people who do not believe in spooky spirits would be willing to live in a house or condo with a haunted reputation; what is more surprising is that a third or so of those who do believe are willing (or interested) in living in a haunted habitat, and that any of them would pay more for it!
A lovely old Victorian house in the historic Almond Grove District of Los Gatos at 230 Tait Avenue is said to be haunted, according to its owner. The area is filled with homes which are more than 100 years old and I’ve often wondered how many of them are haunted. At Halloween most of them look exceedingly spooky!
This house is in the middle of a zoning and use controversy in Los Gatos. The town does not permit Bed & Breakfasts (I think that’s a shame – it’s really almost ideal for that use) or short term rentals, but this house was being advertised as such for at least a couple of years – I noticed because links to one of my blog posts on my Live in Los Gatos blog was getting cited.
The website for the Los Gatos rental includes a page about the haunting which states that the
friendly Ghost has been heard many times by Lynley and her children and seen only once, by someone else, since Lynley bought the home in 2003
If you have any additional information on it, please share here!
A house of horrors is the real lead character in the new FX suspense drama “American Horror Story,” which, in early episodes, finds its owners trying to illegally unload their haunted house without disclosing its dark, dark past. (Reprint this story for free with limited copyright restrictions.)
Good luck with that.
“American Horror Story” revolves around the Harmons, a family of three who moved from Boston to Los Angeles in order to reconcile a dark past and end up with a home that has some baggage of its own.
There’s unfaithful Ben Harmon, a shrink; Vivien Harmon, Ben’s pregnant wife and their teens-will-be-teens, pot-smoking daughter Violet Harmon. They are joined by Constance, the Harmon’s gun-wielding, spooky neighbor; Tate Langdon, one of Ben’s patients; Larry Harvey, who doesn’t seem bothered by the spooks; the Harmon’s housekeeper, both in her past sultry mode and in her present guise as a real come-on bitch. Continue reading
How can you find out who lived – or died – on the property before you owned it or lived in it? It helps to know a friendly real estate agent or title company employee if you want to get the distant past history of your haunted land.
A title company can run a title search and get what is called the “chain of title” for you. That will tell you much more than a property profile or the county records, which often go back only about 10 years. A chain of title can go way, way back – as far as Mexican or Spanish land grants in our area.
Sometimes the chain of title will also include death certificates, so you’ll know if anyone died on the land or in the house. But don’t expect this to be absolutely perfect – no guarantees here!
The title records won’t include everyone who lived at the property address, only those who were on title, so at best it can give you a particular window. But with the owners’ names you may be able to expand your research and learn more about what took place there in days gone by. Google and other search engines can be a huge help, but so can archives from the paper (San Jose Mercury News and others). Don’t forget to just ask the neighbors – you’d be surprises at how much they might know!
I received the email, below, and have permission to share it here (edited slightly for brevity and clarity). I suggested that she talk to the neighbors as they often have input. Got any ideas for her? Please leave a comment!
We have three daughters and out youngest was 13 yrs when we moved into a two story rental home. Her room was a large room over the garage with steps down into it. During our time there the room was always cold (even in the summer). Ali (my daughter) had trouble sleeping and I would go lay in bed with her and I would become uncomfortable in the room and somewhat anxious and inevitably take her to my room.
Ali finally talked to me after we had been there two or three years that there were two children – a girl in a blue smock dress and a boy in older style clothes) that were in her room. She described them as angry at times and they would pick on her. Ali would sleep walk (hasn’t since we moved out). She said they pushed her down in the bed-she said she knew they were mad at her because, she had been gone two days. They would get mad at her when she got migraines (they thought she was ignoring them). The radio would turn on in her bathroom when she showered. One day Ali was very upset about something and went into her room and a music box in the window that needed wound up turned on, on its own, and they whispered “it’s okay”.
As we got closer to moving I would verbally tell them to leave her alone and Ali told me they didn’t like me. After we moved out – they literally broke things – it was winter and the land lord blamed us for leaving the house a mess….It was spotless when we left. I saw pictures of what the landlord claims we did. The toilet in Ali’s bathroom had black water in it that had frozen and cracked the bowl. The oven had been turned on by the landlord to warm the house and all the grease on the exterior turned black. There was a huge water stain on the wood floor that could not be removed. We ended up owing $2000.00 to the landlord for repairs of things we did not do.
I did leave a necklace of Ali’s behind hoping they would not follow her. So far so good. It has been over two years. I wondered how to find out about the land the house is on but I don’t know where to start.
Many thanks to my friend, Adrienne Foster, who sent me this link a week or so ago regarding a house that sounds very haunted in the Hollywood Hills!
A couple of months back, I saw something on television about a home in the Hollywood Hills that’s haunted. It was similarly situated clutching the hill, but it was occupied so should not be the same home as this one in the article, since it does not yet have an occupancy certificate. If you know anything about that house, please let me know. I can’t find it anywhere!
Also in Hollywood, according to seeingstars.com, the ghost of Harry Houdini is said to haunt his old digs on Laurel Canyon Road. Click on the link or Google haunted Hollywood and you’ll find many more spots!
My Sacramento Realtor blogger friend, Gena Riede, recently helped some buyers to purchase a home known as Snowball Mansion in Knights Landing that was reputed to be haunted. (Knights Landing is about 40 minutes by car from Sacramento.) Her clients have now moved in and are experiencing some telltale signs that they may not be alone. They hear noises – things like drawers opening and closing. Or the doorbell ringing but no one (apparently) there.
Gena tracks the sale through several posts on her blog, Sacramento Real Estate Voice.Her most recent entry is this one: Are There Ghosts at Snowball Mansion? Here she details her clients’ experience since moving in and tells readers about the paranormal team that investigates it. If you’d like to read her series in order, here are the earlier posts:
Curbed picked up a Newsday story that “The Amityville Horror House, where Ronald DeFeo Jr. killed six family members in their sleep in 1974—and where a, um, tumultuous month spent in the house by the next owners was turned into a bestselling book and cult classic horror movie—is now on the market asking a cool $1.15 million.”
Get the full story and pics!