Haunted Houses – Would You Say Good Buy or Good-Bye?

would you buy a haunted house?

It’s that time of the year again! Throughout our neighborhoods, we can see countless homes bedecked with fall and Halloween decorations. Pumpkins and Jack-o-lanterns dot patios and stairs, ghost clings haunt storm doors and trees, and skeletons dance in the windows of our homes. This time of the year is exceptionally spooky with the arrival of fall, shorter days, and, of course, Halloween, and Americans love decorating their homes in celebration of the holiday.

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Is Your House Haunted? 7 Spooky Home Happenings Debunked!

Haunted HouseHalloween is just around the corner, and your mind is probably geared toward spooky ghosts, shambling zombies, and lots of other creepy things. You might be prepping for the holiday by watching a whole weeklong marathon of scary movies, which is all fine and dandy… until the lights go out. Suddenly, you hear a lot of strange noises and see shadow figures. Things that you can’t immediately explain occur in your home, and you’re two seconds away from calling an exorcist.

Don’t pick up the phone just yet! Check out these 7 spooky home happenings and see how you can easily debunk them (and fix your home to stop those things from occurring again)!

Things are going “bump” in the night – Are you hearing spooky noises in your home at night? Does it sound like there’s a monster prowling around upstairs, ready to strike? Hearing seemingly unexplained noises in your home could be enough to scare anybody. Truthfully, however, you could be hearing the many materials that make up your home expand and contract throughout the night, making audible pops – this is very common during the fall when warm days give way to cooler nights. So next time you hear a random “pop!” remember that it’s probably just your house settling!

My lights turn on and off for no reason – One night, you might be sitting down, watching your favorite show after a hard day’s work when the lights go off and suddenly come back on with no warning. You might wonder if Dracula is behind you turning the lights on and off, but more than likely, your home might have faulty wiring. Remember also that if bad storms are going through the area that you could experience a whole-house power surge, which sometimes causes lights to turn on and off by themselves. When in doubt, call an electrician!

I have a plague of pests in my home – Are you suddenly seeing an influx of spiders or other critters? Are wasps mysteriously congregating in your basement or attic all of a sudden? It could be a plague from another world, or your home could have cracks in your foundation or simply poor insulation. Check your insulation and foundation to see if there are any holes that need to be patched or if there are any areas that need attention.

I smell weird odors – Do you smell cigarette smoke out of the blue even though no one in your home smokes? Maybe you experience an unexpected whiff of perfume that you’ve never smelled before or a strange smell of sulfur. It could be a deceased relative dropping by to say hello, or it could very well be real hidden odors playing with your mind. Wet fiberglass, which is hidden behind your walls, can carry and give off those musty, strange smells, and any dead rodents that are hidden within your home’s structure can also give off foul odors. You might want to check your gas lines and connections as well. While natural gas is odorless and colorless, natural gas suppliers can add a foul-smelling odor to alert you of any leaks. This smell is like sulfur – rotten eggs.

The television turns itself on and off for no reason – It’s like a scene out of a horror movie. You go downstairs to do your laundry in silence when out of nowhere your television turns itself on for no reason! Casper might be trying to turn the game on, but more than likely this is probably another case of faulty wiring. Your television set could also have a defective switch or a loose circuit connection, which is a serious fire hazard. Disconnect your television until you can get the problem solved!

I think I found some cold spots – Cold spots are a classic sign that a ghost is trying to manifest itself to the living, but there are many other explanations as to why you might be experiencing cold spots in your home. Air leaks, typically from inadequate insulation inside the home, are a very common cause of cold spots showing up in your home. To know if you have a draft problem, try holding a lit candle carefully to your windows, doors, and walls. If the flame blows sideways when it’s held to these fixtures and walls, then air is seeping in and out of these locations in your home. Fix the drafts with a combination of insulation, weather stripping, and caulk, and you should eradicate the issue!

My doors and cabinets open on their own – If your drawers, doors, and cabinets open all on their own, you might be on the set of “Paranormal Activity,” or you could just have low relative humidity in your home. When drier air is present in a house, the wood inside shrinks, which can cause drawers, cabinets, and doors to open all on their own! Try leaving your bathroom door open when you take a shower in the winter – it can help raise the humidity levels in your home. You can also try investing in a good humidifier to help balance the air quality and suck out the moisture that lingers in your home. Your doors and cabinets should stay shut after these fixes! If not, you might want to call the Ghostbusters!

Need more tips? Ready to sell your home? Don’t be scared! Just pick up the phone and call us at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298! You can also visit us online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can help you!

Keep Your Home From Looking Like a Haunted House to Potential Buyers

Many residents in the country enjoy decorating their home for the Halloween season. It isn’t unusual to see doors with spooky wreaths and spiders on them, bushes covered with tons of cobwebs and spiders, and maybe even a few headstones here or there in the front yard.

But what if your home looks like that ALL of the time, regardless of the season? If you’re trying to sell your home, you could be easily be scaring away any potential buyers.

Homes with high curb appeal will typically demand higher prices from a potential buyer, and it almost always takes less time to sell. Of course, the way a house looks from the curb can add thousands of dollars to its value. Maintaining and giving your home a little extra love will definitely help!

But what will give your house the most curb appeal? Just follow these seven tips to help your house from becoming “that creepy house” everyone knows and avoids!

Tip #1 – Time For a Facelift: Before you do anything else to enhance your curb appeal, wash off the dirt, mildew, and general grunge from your home’s exterior. Just a simple bucket of soapy water and a long-handled, soft-bristled brush can remove the dirt and dust on the exterior. Power washers are wonderful at cleaning and revealing the true colors of your home (and your sidewalks!). Be sure to wash your windows inside and out, take down the cobwebs, and hose down your downspouts as well. Don’t forget your garage as well!

Tip #2 – Consider a Paint Job: A new coat of paint or two can really enhance curb appeal. Buyers will notice it instantly, and appraisers will value it. For your best bet, try to match the paint you already have. A home that’s painted a wildly different color from the rest of the competition will usually be marked down in value.

Tip #3 – Raise the Roof! What’s one of the first things potential buyers notice? Your roof! If you have missing, faded, or curled shingles, you’re doing your home no favors! Be sure to hire a professional to replace the roof if it needs it! Sometimes, even cleaning a rooftop of the years of moss, dirt, lichens, and algae will make it look like new, but don’t do it yourself! Call a professional to care for your roof properly!

Tip #4 – Spruce Up the Yard: A neat yard is a happy yard! If your lawn could use some extra attention, try putting in some fresh mulch, pruned shrubs, and beautiful flowers and plants around the house, patio, or trees. Surround your trees and bushes with gorgeous reddish-brown bark mulch – it will give your yard a rich feel to it! Take out the weeds, keep the sticks picked up, and maybe consider potting some pretty flowers and displaying them on your porch. A great yard will do wonders for your curb appeal.

Tip #5 – Use Splashes of Color: You don’t have to go crazy with color – even just a little bit of color will please the eyes of a potential buyer! Plant a tulip border in the fall that will bloom next spring. Place some pretty petunias by your mailbox. Place a colorful Adirondack chair on your patio or front porch. Go ahead and paint your front door red or blue. Just these small touches will help grab a potential buyer’s attention and can help to sell your house more quickly.

Tip #6 – Fence It In: If you don’t have a fence consider investing in a beautiful picket fence to frame your yard. It will add some punch to your property, and appraisers will give extra value to a fence that’s in good condition. Already have a fence? Clean it up and be sure it’s in good condition. Consider giving it a new coat of paint, tighten loose latches, and replace broken gates if you have any.

Tip #7 – Maintain The Exterior: Nothing drives a would-be buyer faster than a home with hanging gutters, an overgrown lawn, missing bricks from the front steps, or peeling paint. When not maintained, these items can damage your house AND decrease it in value by 10%. If you’re looking to sell your home, you should first take care of some maintenance chores such as refastening sagging gutters, resealing cracked asphalt, replacing cracked windows, straightening your shutters, and repointing bricks that have lost their mortar.

Trying to sell your home? Want to ensure that your home doesn’t look like it belongs in a Scooby Doo ghost town? Come see us! We can help you sell your home and get you that house you’ve dreamed about having! Just call us at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298 or visit us online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can help you!