This house is haunted?

5th May 2023. Reading Time: 2 minutes General. 701 page views. 1 comments.

Would you knowingly purchase or rent a property that was the scene of a crime or is said to be haunted? What is the responsibility of real estate agents in this case?

In this week's headlines in Australia, the topic of finding the perfect home has taken a different angle with a property that was the scene of a gruesome murder on the rental market.  In 2019, Jessica Camilleri murdered her mother in the kitchen of the property in very graphic circumstances.  The house is now up for rent and it has brought up a debate on social media as to if you would live in a property where such a horrible crime was committed.   It also made me wonder about so-called haunted houses.  Does this affect the outcome of a sale?

Image Source: News.com.au

In Australia, real estate agents are required by law to disclose details of any crime that has been committed to any potential buyers or tenants applying to rent the property.  In fact, the legal clause also means that the agent must disclose if there are known hauntings in the house.  It all comes down to the requirement to disclose information that is deemed important and disclose anything that could 'stigmatise' the perception of the buyer.  It falls under The Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth).  Interestingly, the agent does not need to prove the existence of a ghost or haunting, but they must disclose anything that is deemed to be important and could affect the outcome of the sale.  In short, a person may not want to buy a house that a person believes is haunted, so it is information that should be presented to them.  The same applies to a crime, death and anything that could cause some buyers to think twice about buying a property!  

Image Source Twitter @mbloomstein

So here are a few questions for discussion.  If it is not the law to disclose this sort of information where you live, should it be?  While some owners would be fearful that some events could drastically reduce the selling price and may try to hide information, should they be required to disclose this kind of information?  What sort of ethics and duty of care should be considered in these circumstances?

Would you live in a house where a crime was committed?  Would you live in a house that was a known 'haunt'?


References

https://www.afr.com/property/is-there-a-ghost-in-the-house-things-real-estate-agents-must-tell-you-20160925-gro22j

https://www.barryplant.com.au/media-hub/blog/moving-haunted-house/

https://www.news.com.au/national/nsw-act/news/sydney-home-where-jessica-camilleri-killed-mother-rita-listed-for-rent/news-story/e8611e516b2f677f71dbb31d5998380b

Cover Photo by Thirdman: https://www.pexels.com/photo/close-up-of-a-woman-holding-a-home-for-sale-sign-8469937/

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Comments

  • Olena 1 year ago

    Before when I was younger and more adventurous (and didn't appreciate the natural health ), it could be my personal challenge to try to live in a haunted house. Though I'm not a ghost hunter, I read a lot of modern interpretations of 'anomalous' or paranormal. And recently I've come to the same conclusion that Barry E. Tuff did. There is always the result of individual RESONANT interaction of the 'focus person' with the environmental factors, in Barry's own words ‘inductive resonance coupling’. For illustrative purposes he presented a photo of the alleged process https://web.archive.org/web/20211018052314/http://barrytaff.net/2014/12/demystifying-the-paranormal-dr-barry-taff-unravels-the-poltergeist-mystery/ And inside the article he explained what he means "So, even if you’re in the right environment and you’re seizure-prone or epileptic, if the field doesn’t resonate with yours…nothing happens. And that may be based more on your emotions than anything else".
    I would definitely skip the haunted property as my potential residence. But if it has a history of very kind ghost(s) and generous (yeah, it's a slippery slope, I know), then I would think twice...and skip it altogether I will definitely choose only the healthy environment. Period.