News & Blog

Haunted Houses: Renters' Biggest Attraction

April 22, 2019

Haunted houses seem fun in the movies, depicting ghost hunters and the Scooby-Doo gang. But supernatural creatures, paranormal phenomena, and other unexplainable activities in a house can scare you to death, or even make you leave your home for good. Experienced landlords are aware that renting out haunted houses is a tricky business. But rumor has it that some tenants purposely seek rentals with horror stories behind them.

How haunted houses can bot attract and scare the tenants

Believe it or not, it's better to know how to react to tenants' assumptions regarding unexplainable activities in a rental than it is to rely on the Ghostbusters.

Do I need to reveal all the secrets before moving in a tenant?

Depending on state laws, it's required to provide a potential tenant with all the information about a rental. This refers not just to the specifics of the heating system or the materials used for construction. The reasons for the previous resident's move might be crucial factors for prospective renters when applying for a rental. Landlords also need to disclose whether there has been a tragic incident or death on a property. While some tenants might like the idea of renting a haunted house, others won't agree to share a rental with a ghost roommate. And we're not talking about a roommate who occupies a rental without landlord consent. Our meaning is something far more supernatural. In this context, the ghost renter refers to some spiritual presence. It's like a renter who doesn't care about lease agreements or rent payments.  

Let's take a real example: Alison, a tenant from Boston, terminated her lease agreement because she was pretty sure there was something going on in her house. Alison never believed in paranormal activity, but she heard strange noises coming from the basement all the time. Trying to keep calm and find a logical explanation, she asked the landlord if he knew what it might be. The landlord was expecting this question, as the previous tenant moved out due to the same reason - a strange noise in the basement. He explained that a few decades ago, a homicide had been committed in this basement. The victim was said to still wander the basement looking for a place to hide from the murderer.

Had Alison known this fact before signing the lease agreement, she might have chosen a more "ghost-free" rental.  

On the other side of things, some landlords and property managers use paranormal activity in their favor by starting a business that rents out haunted houses. Haunted short-term rentals are in high demand among certain types of renters. Digging in the home's archives or inventing dreadful ghost stories to attract tenants might be a win-win solution. But try not to exaggerate.

Steve, a landlord from Minneapolis, uses his old mansion as an attraction for renters. He tells his residents that there are ghostly signs that the house is haunted. However, no one has ever actually seen or heard anything suspicious. Tenants are still looking forward to making the acquaintance of ghosts they share the rental with. Unfortunately for them, it seems unlikely.

Steve is desperately trying to create a mysterious atmosphere for his house, but it's a bit more difficult if the ghosts aren't interested in hanging around.  

Psychologically impacted property.

In real estate and property management, psychologically impacted properties are the ones where certain suspicions or facts may emotionally and psychologically disturb residents. Landlords are obliged to notify prospective tenants if the rental has been the location of a violent death, felony, or suicide. Any alleged supernatural phenomenon or paranormal activity may also be referred to as psychological impact.  

If you don't provide this information, renters are likely to do a little investigating of their own by asking neighbors about previous residents and any rumors concerning the rental.

Do you have any experience of renting out haunted houses? We'd love to hear your terrifying stories. :)