With Halloween just around the corner, spooky stories and haunted houses are all the rage. But what if you're in the market for a new home, and you find out it's rumored to be haunted? Should 'haunted' homes come with a warning to potential buyers? This intriguing question was recently explored in a Miami Herald article, where realtors and paranormal experts shared their thoughts. Among those interviewed, Cari Ann Carter from the Cari Ann Carter Group in Minnesota offered her valuable insights and experiences.
The Spooky Real Estate Tale:
The article begins with a fascinating story from Cindi Hagley, a realtor in California's Bay Area. Nearly two decades ago, she was alone in a house in Antioch when she had a spine-chilling encounter. Later, she learned that the house had a longstanding reputation for being haunted. When she wondered about marketing the property as 'haunted,' it piqued a surprising amount of interest. Although she ultimately sold the house to non-believers, Hagley's unconventional strategy was a success.
Cari Ann Carter's Perspective:
Cari Ann Carter, a seasoned realtor with Edina Realty and the owner of the Cari Ann Carter Group, provided her insights during the interview. She shared her experiences in a career spanning 25 years, during which she has encountered around five homes that she believed might be haunted. Carter emphasizes that disclosing potential hauntings is a tricky matter because belief in the paranormal is highly subjective.
In Minnesota, where Carter practices, there is no legal requirement to disclose potential hauntings. She believes that mentioning potential hauntings can be like "opening a can of worms" because it's a subjective matter, and some people may not believe in it at all. Carter firmly believes that real estate transactions primarily focus on the practical aspects of a property, such as its physical condition, zoning violations, or criminal activities.
The Legal Landscape:
The article goes on to discuss the legal aspects of this intriguing issue. It highlights that while most states in the U.S. do not require disclosure of potential hauntings, a few states like Minnesota, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York have specific laws mentioning paranormal activity in real estate transactions.
In New York, there's even a famous case where a home was declared "haunted as a matter of law," illustrating the importance of transparency in real estate. Legal precedents like this set a precedent for sellers to disclose any known hauntings to potential buyers.
The Importance of Transparency:
The interview also includes real estate agents who stress the moral obligation to disclose known hauntings. Jill McDowell, a real estate agent in Long Island, shared her perspective that sellers should reveal any known hauntings, especially when they are widely known in the community. Her belief stems from the idea that buyers have a right to be informed about significant aspects of a property, including any paranormal history.
A Paranormal Perspective:
The article also features Kathy Eastman, a medium and a member of the Paranormal Investigators of New England. She shared her experiences of living in a haunted house as a child and highlighted that her parents disclosed the haunting when they sold it. Kathy emphasized the importance of disclosure, especially when it comes to well-known paranormal properties, like the Amityville Horror House.
The Paranormal Investigators of New England conduct thorough investigations to determine if a home is truly 'haunted.' Their approach combines equipment-based assessments with personal observations and experiences to debunk potential paranormal claims and distinguish real hauntings from other explanations.
In the world of real estate, the question of whether 'haunted' homes should come with a warning is a fascinating one, and the Miami Herald's recent article delves deep into the issue. The insights shared by Cari Ann Carter and other experts offer valuable perspectives on a topic that challenges traditional norms of property disclosure. It's a reminder that real estate transactions are not just about bricks and mortar but also the stories and experiences that come with them, even if those stories are on the spookier side.
Cari Ann and her team deliver a stress-free and seamless process to help you through your next life transition. Whatever that might be.