Maybe there's something creepy about the way your stairs creak when no one is walking on them. Or maybe that new house you're considering buying gives you chills and you don't know why.
You don't need to consult a psychic or a Ouija board. The website DiedInHouse.com will search for murders, suicides and accidental or natural deaths at any U.S. address. But that's not all. Your $11.99 fee will also cover a search for any fires or meth lab activity that occurred at the location. (How practical!)
According to the website, the company has a database of 4.5 million houses that were the site of confirmed deaths, and that number is growing at a pace of about 500,000 per year. This takes the guesswork out of figuring out if anyone expired where you live or where you want to live.
Although most people would want to know about any in-house deaths, few states have laws requiring disclosure of deaths or crime to prospective purchasers. For example, according to Bloomberg, the state Supreme Court of Pennsylvania ruled last year that "psychological stigmas" such as deaths don't need to be disclosed at all. It's the same story in Massachusetts, where state law allows sellers to keep quiet about "alleged para psychological or supernatural phenomenon."
The company uses news reports, obituaries and other public records to track down the information, and has so far performed 30,000 paid property searches, founder Roy Condrey told Bloomberg.
Condrey said he created the site when the tenant of a rental property he owns told him she thought the place was haunted. He searched the Internet for a website that might reveal if there had been a death in the house.
"I was looking for a Carfax for homes," he said. "Instead, I found pages and pages of Google search results asking the question 'How do I find out if my house is haunted?'"