Boo!-tiful homes Stories by ROSE YASMIN KARIM
March 14, 2009
ROSE YASMIN KARIM
The Star Online
Along a tree-lined road in Cheras are some big homes with big yards. One of them, decades old, may have something the rest don’t — a former tenant too attached to leave.
What makes the situation even more special is that he’s dead.
“My wife and I looked at over 30 houses,” recalls owner Christopher Lee.
“Most were far too expensive. Some were dumps and almost uninhabitable. This was the best, and the price was right at 20% below the market value.”
The five-bedroom, four-bathroom house was on the market for a long time and was sagging from neglect.
“The plumbing was outdated, but the quality of the workmanship was good.
“The valuer’s report came out clean and there were no termites, so my wife and I bought it at a big discount. It was too good a deal to pass on,” says Lee declining to say how much he paid.
After Lee and his wife contracted to buy the house, they were stunned to learn from a neighbour that their lovely new house had a sinister past. Lee wouldn’t offer details but says the previous owner of the house suffered a very gruesome death.
The Lees became worried that their relatives wouldn’t want to visit them if they knew about what had happened in the master bedroom, and they were especially concerned about the value of their house.
“One evening, I was playing with my dog, Fleece, when I noticed a shadow out of the corner of my eye. It was mimicking my arm’s motion. I didn’t think too much about it, but then my car keys, which I always put in a dish, kept going missing. I searched high and low for them to little avail.
“Every time, I would eventually find the keys back in the dish they had gone missing from. It became clear that there was something in the house that wanted to make itself known to me,” says Lee.
A medium told Lee to firmly tell the spirit to leave, so he took the advice and delivered a spirited monologue to the paranormal entity.
“I said, ‘I know you loved this home and have lived here for many years, but this is my house now, not yours and I can’t have you disturbing my family. Move on. You would be happier if you crossed over’.
“A spiritual cleanser came to bless the house, and whatever it was that was in the house, went away and never returned,” sighs a relieved Lee.
Now, Lee and his wife have two sons. You’ll find flowers and play-doh on the lawn. A large glass window allows sunshine to illuminate their Ikea kitchen cabinets. The gloom has been lifted.
“The ghost did one good thing for us, though — it got us this home for a steal,” Lee concludes.
While Lee’s dream of growing old in his dream house may just come true, there are others who haven’t been so fortunate.
Emily’s (not her real name) first real estate purchase wasn’t the stereotypical older house with creaky flooring thrown in. Her house was in a new housing area, and she had bought it from the developer. Still, she found herself battling an unseen force bent on chasing her out of her own home.
“When the bulbs kept fusing, I assumed there was a wiring problem,” she says.
Then the real haunting began.
“I experienced bad dreams and heard voices calling me. Every time I entered the house, I was overwhelmed by feelings of sadness and depression.
“At night, I’d be awoken by this feeling of someone sitting on my chest. My doctor said I was experiencing sleep paralysis and advised me to sleep on my side.
“It didn’t help, so I slept in a different bedroom and turned my old room into a guestroom. It didn’t surprise me when guests who slept there told me they were visited by dead relatives.
“A couple of times I was downstairs watching TV or cooking in the kitchen when I heard footsteps upstairs. I went up to investigate but there was no-one there,” she says.
Emily, a teacher, considers herself to be a rational and articulate person. She doesn’t think it was her imagination going wild.
“I kept a journal and wrote down the details of the occurrences,” she recalls.
Eventually, when she couldn’t take it anymore, Emily sold the house and moved back in with her parents.
“I consulted an appraiser and sold the house for 30% more than the original price to a big family.
“I didn’t mention the weird happenings because the couple who bought it seemed very modern and I didn’t think they believed in ghosts.
“I drove past the house some time ago and it looks totally different now. They have given it a face-lift; I could hardly recognise it.”