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Trick or Treat: Nearly 60 Percent of People Who Have Lived in a Haunted House Said They Found Out after Moving In

October 27 2019

Thirty-seven percent knew it was haunted before and moved in anyway

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Oct. 23, 2019 -- Nearly 60 percent of people who have lived in a haunted house didn't know it was haunted before they moved in, according to the realtor.com fourth annual Haunted Real Estate Report, which was released today. The findings, which might cause a fright, begs the question: would you consider living in a haunted home?

The survey of 1,000 people across the United States was conducted earlier this month by Toluna Research through online interviews. Here are some of the spooky findings:

rdc 2019 10 23 Trick or Treat

Forty-three percent of respondents may have had a ghost as a roommate

According to the survey, 58 percent of respondents said they have never lived in a haunted home, 23 percent of respondents said they have lived in one, while 20 percent think they may have lived in a haunted home. Of those who felt certain that they lived in a haunted house, 58 percent had no idea it was haunted before moving in and 37 percent knew it was and decided to go for it anyway. Five percent said maybe.

Strange noises and shadows are the most common spooky happenings

So what made them think it was haunted? Sixty-five percent of those surveyed said strange noises in the house made them think it was haunted. Fifty-two percent said strange shadows in the house, followed by 48 percent who said items moved on their own, 47 percent said certain rooms felt haunted, 46 percent said they would feel touched, and 44 percent said their home had hot and cold spots.

"Moving into a new home is a really exciting time, but finding out that your new abode has an unwanted guest can definitely put a damper on the celebration," according to Nate Johnson, chief marketing officer at realtor.com®. "We conduct this survey annually and it's always interesting to see the results. This year, we were surprised by how many people had unknowingly moved into a haunted house at some point in their lives, and even more so by how many people knew and decided to move in regardless."

Majority of people prefer to live ghost free

When asked if they would ever consider moving into a haunted house, 54 percent of respondents said there was no way. Twenty-one percent were prepared to dust off the ole' Ghostbusters costume and brave whatever spooky happenings might be plaguing the house, while 21 percent were on the fence and responded with "maybe."

Interestingly, survey responses were not that different even if the home buyer didn't actually buy the home. When asked what they would do if they inherited a haunted home, 51 percent of respondents said they would take the money and run by selling it immediately. Just under a quarter -- 23 percent -- would try to flush the ghosts out with a new kitchen or floors by renovating the home. Twenty percent of these brave souls are willing to take the risk and would simply move into their new abode, while 6 percent aren't taking any risks for themselves or others -- they'd tear the place down.

But respondents don't mind a neighborhood ghoul

While the majority of respondents were against the prospect of choosing to live in a haunted house, the survey found they were much more amenable to living next to one, rather than in one. Nearly 43 percent of respondents were willing to live next to a house they believed was haunted, compared to the 21 percent that would actually be willing to live in one. Still, 31 percent have seen the movies and they just aren't willing to take the risk of living next to a house they believed was haunted.

About realtor.com®

Realtor.com®, The Home of Home Search, offers the most MLS-listed for-sale listings among national real estate portals, and access to information, tools and professional expertise that help people move confidently through every step of their home journey. Through its Opcity platform, realtor.com® uses data science and machine learning to connect consumers with a real estate professional based on their specific buying and selling needs. Realtor.com® pioneered the world of digital real estate 20 years ago, and today is a trusted resource for home buyers, sellers and dreamers by making all things home simple, efficient and enjoyable. Realtor.com® is operated by News Corp [Nasdaq: NWS, NWSA] [ASX: NWS, NWSLV] subsidiary Move, Inc. under a perpetual license from the National Association of REALTORS®. For more information, visit realtor.comrealtor.com.