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WESTFIELD, N.J. – It was a million-dollar dream home for one New Jersey family, located in picturesque Westfield, New Jersey — until the letters started showing up.
The threatening notes were signed by someone calling himself “The Watcher,” and the messages were so disturbing they forced the family out of the $1.3 million, 6-bedroom home, leaving the rest of the town on edge.
The troubling messages are detailed in a lawsuit against the former owners, the real estate company, and others. The plaintiffs, Derek and Maria Broaddus, claim the previous owners were so desperate to sell the house they covered up the haunting “claim of a right of possession and/or ownership of the home and his nefarious intentions.”
What to Disclose If the House Is Haunted or Otherwise Stigmatized There are some "intangible" problems with a property that buyers cannot discover through an inspection. A property may, for example, be "stigmatized" if it is affected by psychological or other factors that have nothing to do with its physical condition but affect whether it would be desirable to live in. Examples of such stigma include a house that is allegedly haunted or where a violent death took place. In New Jersey, you do not have to disclose these things BUT, if the buyer asks you about them, you must answer honestly.
originally posted by: Atsbhct
I don't know if it's my love of mail, or my love of rationality, but I don't believe this would scare me. No one has died at the house before at the hands of "The a Watcher". So far, the couple can't prove the previous owners were ever on the receiving end of any letters before they had bought the house and were close to closing.
It wouldn't surprise me at all if this is a scam by the Broaddus's in an attempt to recoup from buying an expensive house that maybe they couldn't afford. I know in Canada there are laws that protect buyers from moving into houses where murders, gang activity, drug activity, and sometimes even hauntings have occured, but not been disclosed before purchase.