From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
In real estate, stigmatized property is property which buyers or tenants may shun for reasons that are unrelated to its physical condition or features. in addition to a belief that a house may be haunted. The concept is controversial.
Famous homes, such as those used in television productions or filmmaking, can also be stigmatized by increased traffic from fans wanting to see the house in person. One such home is the house at 112 Ocean Avenue in Amityville, New York, made famous in the film The Amityville Horror. In this house, Ronald DeFeo, Jr. murdered his family. The Lutz family claimed that, a little over a year later, evil spirits drove them from their home; their claims have been repeated by the Catholic Church and by paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. The late Hans Holzer also maintained to his dying day that the spirit of a long-dead Indian chief haunts the property. Since the film's release, the house has been renovated and the address changed in an attempt to prevent sightseers from disturbing the neighborhood.
It is argued that the seller has a duty to disclose any such history of the property. This, in practice, falls into two categories: demonstrable (physical) as well as emotional. These guidelines vary from state to state.