Spooky Real Estate Stories

Killer clowns, haunted houses and moving objects—no, we’re not talking about the latest Hollywood horror flick coming to a theatre near you.

Just in time for Halloween, we asked members from CREA’s Board of Directors to tell us about one of their ghostly or ghoulish real estate tales. These (mostly) true stories are sure to give you chills. Read on…if you dare!

James Mabey, Regional Director, Alberta

James Mabey

“It was March of 2016, on a particularly chilly and cloudy early spring day. I was working with a young couple, Eric and Lynae, who are great friends of my husband and I.

The showing began like any other. I shook off the morning chill and opened the key box. We toured the main floor, turning on lights as we proceeded, given the gloomy day. Allowing my clients to lead, we headed to the basement. The wind was blowing outside, and tree branches scratched at the side of the house—spring in Alberta.

The light on the lower landing flickered but didn’t come on. Lynae reached through the darkness for the doorknob of the closest room. She gave a tug on the door. It didn’t give way, so Eric gave her some assistance.

The door flew open and from the darkness beyond a knife wielding clown lunged for my clients!

Not my proudest moment: I let out a shriek!

Only moments later we realized we had stumbled upon the seller’s Halloween decorations in storage.

I have yet to live this down amongst our friends.”

Get in the Halloween spirit with our real estate-related pumpkin stencils. Show off you Jack-o’-lanterns on social media using #ProudREALTOR—and don’t forget to tag us in your snaps.

Kimberly French, Regional Director, Atlantic

“I was one month into my career when I received a call on Halloween to list a house. The sweet little voice on the other end of the phone explained to me she could no longer live in her home and must sell. 

She wanted me to meet her at a location that was not her home, and someone would go with me to view it later.

The home was located in a desirable area with many executives’ homes, so I was eager to have my first listing there.

I met with the lady and the friend with all the enthusiasm of a newly minted agent, we were on our way!

Now today, I am very cautious of who I have in my car but back then I had no fear!

Things started to get strange when the friend opened up to me that this dear soul had to leave her home because of harassing phone calls and cruel pranks. I injected with the required ‘oh my’ and ‘so sad’ and other similar expressions in the conversation until we arrived at the house.

Then I saw it!

Blackened windows, garbage strewn around, signs of a neglected home—so I thought. 

I had the oddest feeling but realized why soon after the door was opened.

The house and contents had been completely burned and prior to this, a man had been murdered there! The person who was accused of the murder was the spouse of the person I was with and this person was accused of setting the fire in the house!

Because it was Halloween, I thought it had to me a prank, but it was not!”

Steven Bobiash, Regional Director, Saskatchewan

“I listed an old home (more than 100 years) in a small town. I was in the house one day taking my pictures and measurements when I came down from the third floor and the tenant asked if I had heard a loud noise.

A large mirror in a room on the main floor had fallen off the wall and shattered, a few minutes after I had taken pictures in that room. The mirror had been up on that wall for years according to the tenant.

I later learned that the room had been used to host wakes a century earlier.”

haunted house

Thankfully, no REALTORS® were hurt in these Halloween-inspired stories, but unfortunately it doesn’t need to be Halloween for real estate professionals to walk into some scary situations. To stay safe on Halloween—or any time of the year—read our REALTOR® safety tips.

Have a Halloween story to share? Tell us in the Comments below.

Sarah Doktor brings her experience as a small-town journalist and national online editor to the Canadian Real Estate Association as a Communications Advisor. Sarah helps facilitate conversations between CREA and our members, boards, associations and the public via our online communities. She also helps coordinate the content presented to you here on the CREA Café. In her spare time, Sarah can be found at the gym, running on a trail or watching Netflix with her cat, Libby.


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