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These Real-Life Ghostbusters Will Help Sell Your Haunted House
Who you gonna call? Some psychics and paranormal investigators charge hundreds of dollars to clear homes of unwanted spirits

By
KATY MCLAUGHLIN

Lots of things can thwart a home sale—ugly décor, a bad location or an unrealistic price. But some homeowners and real-estate agents cite another reason: ghosts.

For help, there’s a cottage industry of people who advertise themselves as psychics, ghostbusters and paranormal investigators. Some charge hundreds of dollars to visit “haunted” properties—either in person, or via astral travel—and “clear” them of unwanted spirits. Others are volunteer ghostbusters who comb homes with high-tech gear to suss out paranormal activity.

Jane Phillips, a paranormal investigator and self-described clearer in Santa Fe, N.M., markets her services to real-estate agents because “it’s easier to get them to pay for something if it gets their houses sold.” Ms. Phillips, 65, was a mortgage banker for 30 years in Minneapolis, before moving to New Mexico in 2008, she said. Since then she has worked on hundreds of homes, mostly locally, charging about $350 to $400.

Jobs require her to remove “energetic things,” that can include ghosts but can also be portals—energetic holes connected to planets—as well as what she calls dark energies, which are “energies from other dimensions,” she said. The work mostly occurs “in my imagination—but my imagination is real,” said Ms. Phillips.

Suzanne Taylor, the broker/owner of Taylor Properties in Santa Fe, hired Ms. Phillips for six of her home listings, paying between $500 and $750 for services. She recently brought her in on a house listed for about $300,000 in Santa Fe. Ms. Phillips came into the house carrying “dowsing rods,” crooked rods that are traditionally used as divination tools for finding buried treasure or water.

“She holds them and walks around the house and the rods move on their own,” said Ms. Taylor. At the end of the process, Ms. Phillips said she created a “white blanket of light” in her mind to “lift out any stray energies.”

Shortly thereafter, “I got an offer and closed it,” Ms. Taylor said.