The Kitchen Ghost

In the beginning of my real estate career, I jumped at the chance to sell a darling, 1930’s cottage in West Seattle with a fantastic view of downtown Seattle. The owners were retired and traveling between their other homes in Arizona and Salt Lake City, so I was given the access code in order to prepare the home for listing.  I was by myself when I entered to stage it.  the front door was rounded at the top, much like the medieval castles with a wrought iron door handle.  The entry had prominent presence that harkened to the past and at first I thought that was the reason the hairs on the back of my neck stood on end.

Every time I entered through that front door a little gust of wind would rush past my face.  There were no doors or windows open and it was summer so the heat was not on.  I was too focused and excited to give it much thought, but it did make me pause and wonder if something or someone was in this vacant home. The kitchen was a little cooler than the rest of the home, which was odd. There weren’t any vents or windows that would account for this.

I went about staging the home, moving some furniture around, hanging a neutral shower curtain and rearranging the cabinet contents in the kitchen as they were paned glass and I wanted them to look organized.   I had just closed the cabinet to admire my work and when I turned around to reach for something else, a coffee cup catapulted out of the cupboard and smashed to the ground.  There was no explanation for this as I had just been looking at the cups and I knew that they were all snug as a bug in their assigned places.

This was before I knew what to do with ghosts, so like most of you, convinced myself that there was a reasonable explanation and went about my work.  This was just the beginning of the oddities that I experienced there.  When the marketing photos came back from the photographer, none of the pictures of the kitchen turned out and we had to exclude kitchen pictures from the listing.

During an Open House, I was sitting alone in the dining room that adjoined the kitchen when a bumble bee went buzzing by my face.  I do not like bees at all, so I nearly had a heart attack trying to get it to fly out the window.  A few minutes later 2 or 3 more bees were flying around the kitchen and I could not locate where they were coming from.  Thankfully a buyer walked in and helped me either kill them or shoo them out, but that one still stumps me. That same day as I was locking the house up to go home the patio door off of the dining room swung open.  I had already locked it, double checked it and was absolutely sure it was closed.

Throughout this 30-45 day Selling period, doors would slam shut, objects would move and the inspector never did find a source for the bees and the wind would always greet me at the front door.  I have no idea who or what was in that house, but when it finally Closed, it was a happy, happy day.

If you also have experienced odd occurrences in your home, your first stop should be the library. Tax records may be able to reveal owners names, estate sales, possibly signifying a death in the home, but won’t reveal news articles or the history of the home like a trip to the library will. Once you have a greater understanding of who or what is in your home, then you can take the appropriate measures to remove it.  Evil spirits require a religious expert to exorcise it, old homeowners require a blessing of love and light and ritual to send them to the light.  Or if they are nice, you can co-habituate, but a ghostly roommate unfortunately doesn’t pay rent; I say send them home.

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