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What's Haunting Your House and What to Do About It

Updated on August 29, 2017
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Kitty has had paranormal experiences her entire life. These experiences have fueled her passion to write about all things supernatural.

What kind of spirit is haunting your house? There's more than one kind and depending on what it is will determine how to get rid of it.
What kind of spirit is haunting your house? There's more than one kind and depending on what it is will determine how to get rid of it. | Source

Is Your House Haunted?

Maybe you're experiencing strange things in your house. Maybe you've seen things, felt things, or heard things, and you're wondering if your house is haunted. The first thing you should do is stop doubting if your house is haunted or not. If you've had the inclination, it is most likely haunted. The next step is to determine what kind of haunting you are experiencing, and then you can move on to determine what to do about it.

Each section below will tell you the signs of each type of haunting, and then will go into what you can do about these hauntings. A good rule of thumb is to keep notes and say yes or no to each sign: the section with the most signs will most likely tell you what kind of haunting you are dealing with. Keep in mind that each haunting is unique, just as each individual is unique. You may have to adjust and adapt.

Signs You're Being Haunted by a Ghost

You might be thinking your house is haunted by a ghost. Ghosts are the spirits of the human deceased who have gotten trapped between this world and the next or of whom have returned to earth for a specific reason (though the former is most common). Ghosts who are trapped on the earthly plane tend to be the more sad, angry, or vengeful ghosts while ghosts who visit earth for a reason from the other side are usually bringing a message of peace or hope to someone they love.

Here are some signs your house is haunted by a ghost:

  • strange noises at night: footsteps, banging of doors or drawers, knocking, voices, laughs
  • strange scents that seem to come out of nowhere and disappear as fast: grandma's perfume, cigar smoke, roses, food smells when those foods aren't around, etc.
  • strange sights: wispy translucent images, movement in the corner of your vision, visions of deceased loved ones or strangers
  • strange feelings: feelings of not being alone when you are alone in the house, feeling of someone touching your shoulder/back/arm/etc, goosebumps with no explanation

Other signs could be shown by your pets. Often dogs and cats (and other animals) can see ghosts and sense things when we can't. You might notice your animals staring or barking/meowing at the air. You might notice them getting scared and hiding for no known reason.

Here are reasons why your house might be haunted by a ghost:

  • your house is old (usually 40 years or older)
  • someone died in your house
  • you live near a cemetery or gravesite
  • a tragedy occurred in (or possibly near) your house: murder, suicide, chronic illness, fire, a nearby battlefield, hunting accidents, drowning, etc.
  • the person who lived in your house before you might have messed around with the occult or magic
  • a loved one recently died and might be visiting you

Ghosts can show themselves as shadows or translucent forms.
Ghosts can show themselves as shadows or translucent forms. | Source

What to Do About a Ghost Haunting

If you can say yes to a bunch of these signs and reasons, then your house is most likely haunted by a ghost. Some people have a hard time distinguishing between demons and ghosts, which I plan to clear up for you in this article (read to the next section if you're not sure). If you're sure you have a ghost in your house, here are some things you can do:

  • if they are relatively peaceful ghosts, live alongside of them in peace (particularly if they were in your house before you)
  • if they are becoming bothersome or ominous in some way: perform a spiritual cleansing and blessing of your house with sage smudging and holy water/oil
  • ask a priest or religious official to perform a cleansing or blessing on your home
  • look for evidence that the ghost might be attached to a specific object in your house and remove it from your house (look in the attic, basement, etc. for antiques or other heirlooms potentially left behind)

If these things don't work, you might be dealing with something more sinister and more steps will need to be taken to remove the entity from your home and life. See the next section on demons.

Your pets may be showing you signs that your house is haunted. Often they pick up on things that we don't notice.

— Nicole Canfield

Signs You're Being Haunted by a Demon

If you answered yes to many of the signs above in the ghost section, but you're having problems of a more aggressive or violent nature, you might be dealing with a demon. A demon is a spirit that has never incarnated as a human. There are debates as to their origin, which include: fallen angels that work for Satan, ancient gods that have been forgotten over time, guardians of the land, thought forms, and more. Regardless of their origin, when they decide to attach to a family or person, they can be downright terrifying and destroy lives in their wake.

Here are the signs you're dealing with a demon's presence and not just a normal ghost:

  • the hauntings began randomly in a house where you've lived for a while
  • they seem to center around one particular person in your household (often a teenager or even a child)
  • the person of whom the activity is centered around has become withdrawn or lashes out, acts like a different person than what they used to be
  • if it's a child, they may mention having an imaginary friend but this imaginary friend encourages them to do bad things
  • you may see shadows in your peripheral vision that move without an explanation, you may even see shadows directly
  • you may hear voices at night that sound evil, whisper awful things, curse, scream or cry. Sometimes these voices mimic the voice of a child.
  • things are moved, tossed, thrown, destroyed without an explanation
  • heirlooms, photo frames, and precious personal items are destroyed without an explanation
  • nightmares, night terrors, sleep paralysis (waking up and not being able to move) that continues regularly and comes out of nowhere
  • strange, offensive smells: sulfur, smoke, rotten meat, etc.
  • violent attacks on you or other people in your house by an invisible force: smacks, kicks, choking, pushed.
  • inexplicably bruises, cuts, marks on bodies after waking up in the morning

If you have these signs, please read on to find out some options to end this cycle.

What to Do About a Demon Attachment/Possession

If your type of haunting is demonic in nature, often it is more than just a "haunting" where the spirit is living in your house. Often it is what is known as a demonic attachment which can lead (in rare situations) to a possession. It is a terrifying though, but these things have been documented and do occur whether you are a religious person or not. Don't believe me? Do the research yourself.

Here are some things you can do to sever the attachment between the demon and person before it goes too far:

  • the person being tormented needs to stop all bad habits that weakens them: alcohol abuse, drug abuse, addiction of any kind, negative thinking, self harm, etc.
  • the person being tormented could be dealing with depression and anxiety, both of these illnesses need to be addressed with counseling immediately
  • someone in your house could be dabbling in black magic (magic that deals with dark and negative energies such as necromancy and curses). Also be aware of any ouija board use as ouija boards are known to be wide channels for spirits to come through, most often attracting low level spirits and demons. Get rid of any ouija boards or dark magic items.

In addition to helping the person of whom the spirit is trying to attach itself, you'll need to do a full cleansing of your house on your own or by a religious official. If you feel like you will be too scared or weak to do it on your own, contact your religious official such as a priest, pastor, mambo, shaman, medium, witch, etc. If you decide to do the spiritual cleansing on your own, use sage to smudge your house (always open the windows to let the entity out otherwise you'll piss it off more). Also bless our windows and doorways and the person's room with holy water or olive oil (draw a protective religious symbol using the oil or water).

Here are some other things you can do:

  • leave some lights on at night (demons thrive in darkness)
  • leave some fans running (demons thrive in stagnant air)
  • teach your family members not to fear or thrive on negative thoughts as this feeds the entity
  • hang religious or protective symbols around your home
  • be firm in your beliefs and don't take no for an answer if there are those who are unwilling to help you

Abandoned houses and places are often breeding grounds (so to speak) for demons.
Abandoned houses and places are often breeding grounds (so to speak) for demons. | Source

Signs You're Being Haunted by an Elemental

There's a third kind of spirit that could be haunting your house or property that most people are unaware exists. This is an Elemental. Elementals are the spirits of the land and could also be guardians of certain sacred natural sights: waterfalls, rivers, forests, lakes, mountains, caves, even certain old trees and groves. They are also what are called fairies, the wee folk, the sidhe, dwarves, trolls, etc. They aren't just mythological creatures, they are spirits of the land that were made into these creatures over time. When these beings haunt a house or building, it is most often because they feel their territory is being infringed upon in some way. And, unfortunately, these beings will be harder to "get rid of". They are extraordinarily strong and willful beings and often act much different than a ghost or demon will.

Here are some signs you might be dealing with an Elemental haunting:

  • you recently moved into a brand new house or new construction of some kind
  • you recently had a large tree or trees cut down
  • you made some kind of major change to the landscape near your house
  • you added on to the structure of your house
  • jewelry, sparkly things, keys, and other smaller items are moved or lost then returned later
  • poltergeist activity such as things being broken, moved violently, doors slammed, things thrown in plain sight
  • strange sounds during day twilight hours (dusk and dawn): instruments playing, giggles, singing, bells ringing, voices speaking another language
  • aggression shown towards you outside of your home: pushed, hit, hair pulled.
  • if you have animals, their hair being braided or cut without an explanation
  • animals acting strangely - being spooked or playing with something unseen

Elemental spirits have been known throughout folklore to braid horses' hair. Watch your pets' hair for signs of this.

— Nicole Canfield

What to Do About an Elemental Haunting

The reason an Elemental could be haunting your house or your property as mentioned before is because they feel their territory has been invaded. Because of this, and unfortunately, it's going to be more difficult for you to deal with this kind of haunting. Until the spirit feels it is safe or justified for its activity or until its territory is left alone, you might be dealing with its antics and anger.

Here are some things you can try to do with an elemental haunting:

  • contact your local medicine man or shaman: this specific kind of spiritual official often know more about this kind of haunting than say a priest or official from the church
  • hang wind chimes and bells around the outside of your house (elementals while they love their own music are often scared off by our loud or sharp noises)
  • hang iron horseshoes above your doors (elementals are historically known to despise or be driven off by iron)
  • leave offerings for them outside of your house: elementals are thought to like sweet desserts, milk, cream, mead, ale, wine, bread, etc. (Never leave an offering inside of your house as it's like saying they are welcome in your home)
  • smudge your house using white sage (google how to smudge your house), make sure to open the windows to let the spirit escape
  • erect a sanctuary outside for the elemental to show it that you want peace: this can be a garden, bird bath and bird houses, plant a tree(s) (this works especially if you recently cut down a tree which might have been the elemental's home)
  • if all else fails, deal with the haunting or move.

Sometimes elemental spirits will appear in the form of a wild animal...showing aggression to an intruder.
Sometimes elemental spirits will appear in the form of a wild animal...showing aggression to an intruder. | Source

© 2017 Nicole Canfield

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  • GreenEyes1607 profile image

    GreenEyes1607 7 weeks ago from USA

    Very interesting stuff. I used to live in a haunted place so I know exactly what you're talking about. I have heard about land being haunted by an elemental, but didn't know much else about it. I think I've seen on one of those ghost hunter shows where a family was being haunted because they built their house on land that used to belong to Native Americans and was an ancient burial ground. I've always been fascinated by the paranormal. Thanks for sharing this article.

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    Amiejl627 2 months ago

    Oh wow... this is EXACTLY why I am here.... let me explain. ... my fiance committed suicide in 2009 in my name. Since then I've always felt his presence near me and not in a good way but he's never hurt me..... he goes everywhere I go. WELL I'VE recently moved in with some extended family and they have had a spirit in this home since they moved in regards years ago, but in their case they feel it protects them. Moved things on occasion and also knocks on one certain wall all the time.... I also moved into the most active room in the home. And in the last week 2 huge bruises have appeared on my leg, I am waking up literally drenched in a cold sweat (enough to ring out a shirt)... I am a lucid dreamer but these last few weeks I can not remember a dream to save my life.... ALSO my things (only my things) are now starting to disappear. Not move like before this is different... my glasses (very expensive and mostly special to me because I could never afford them and got them by chance) have gone missing among other things but in this case I accused one of the teenagers I live with (also my cousin) of stealing. She DID NOT take them however it caused a great deal of animosity in the home.... my idea is that the spirit of my fiance was never a good one and has caused many bad relationships and torn family ties... but now with this other spirit here is it possible that he is feeding off of it and gaining the power to hurt me? He was physically abusive when alive..... I'm starting to feel a bit crazy. If anyone has any information please reach out!!!

  • fpherj48 profile image

    Paula 2 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    MzB WHAT?! OMG, all these years I've been tearing the house up, one side and down the other, searching for my keys, my glasses, my purse, etc??...and all I had to do was tell them all to "STAY?!" Damn, where were you 50 years ago? I don't even want to think about the total hours of life, I've spent looking, under, inside, over, in the house, the yard, the car!! Wracking my brain, going over my steps...until I want to sit down and cry.

    You have just made my day!!................Paula

  • kittythedreamer profile image
    Author

    Nicole Canfield 2 months ago from the Ether

    Hi MizBejabbers - I have had experiences with certain pieces of jewelry disappearing, only to show up the next day right in the spot where it should have been. I thought this might've been the wee folk playing tricks, but who knows? Your theory is an intriguing one, and I agree...the veil right now is very thin...the eclipse perhaps?

  • MizBejabbers profile image

    MizBejabbers 2 months ago

    I dealt with a cranky elemental in a building where I worked at night years ago. It loved to scare me, but when I let it know that I knew it was harmless, it left me alone.

    Right now I'm dealing with things disappearing. Sometimes they come back on their own, sometimes I or my husband can call them back, and sometimes I never see them again. I've come to the conclusion that this is a manifestation of my own multidimensionality and not an elemental or a demon. I lost a bracelet a few months ago, and tried to call it back. After I bought a new one just like it, the old one reappeared exactly where I had placed it. Now when I put up a piece of jewelry or something that I care about, I hold my hand over it and say "stay". So far that has worked and nothing has disappeared that I've commanded to stay. LOL Have you had any problems with this, Nicole?

    The veil is so thin between dimensions that right now many people are exhibiting this trait. The thin veil also can account for seeing shadows or shadow people around us or in our homes.

  • heidithorne profile image

    Heidi Thorne 2 months ago from Chicago Area

    Not likely our house is haunted. But good to know what to look for! Even if not haunted, I think homes retain the energy of their occupants in some way. Interesting as always. Have a blessed weekend!

  • kittythedreamer profile image
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    Nicole Canfield 2 months ago from the Ether

    coffeequeeen - Me too! Thanks for reading. :)

  • Coffeequeeen profile image

    Louise Powles 2 months ago from Norfolk, England

    My home isn't haunted, but I have been places that are. I find it all very interesting.