China’s haunted house testers get paid to prove homes are ghost-free

HERE’S THE SCOOP:

  • It’s so hard to sell a haunted property in China that owners are hiring people to ensure they’re ghost-free.
  • Haunted house testers get paid by the minute and earn up to $220 for a 24-hour stay.
  • “The new buyers do not dare to sleep in the place, so they pay people to give it a try and see if it is safe,” one tester said.

In China, it can be nearly impossible to sell a property where an unnatural death occurred. A group of brave freelancers is willing to help ensure that homes on the market are ghost-free — for a price.

The country is home to a small sect of haunted house testers hired by real estate agents, property owners, or potential buyers. These bold individuals typically make 16 cents per minute, meaning they could earn up to $220 for a 24-hour stay.

“This is a niche occupation. It’s not suitable to be a full-time job, but it can be a part-time gig. Workers need to fly across the country and they do not know where they will go next,” said Zhang, a retired soldier who works as a haunted house tester.

“Some of my friends say it is an easy job — sleep for one night and get the money. They asked me for help to get into the gig, but most of them were afraid. My friends quit after their first time.”

In addition to being a niche job, there’s also low demand, Zhang said. For the last few years, he worked about one gig annually.

That one person is usually a real estate agent or a recent purchaser of a property they suspect has unwanted guests.

“The new buyers do not dare to sleep in the place, so they pay people to give it a try and see if it is safe,” Zhang said.

“Some of my friends say it is an easy job — sleep for one night and get the money. They asked me for help to get into the gig, but most of them were afraid. My friends quit after their first time,” he added.

According to the South Morning China Post, it’s common for people in Asia “to actively avoid houses that were the location of an ‘unnatural death’ because of concerns that the incident will bring bad fortunes to the subsequent residents.” Haunted houses tend to sell for a significantly lower price, the outlet said.

“This is a niche occupation. It’s not suitable to be a full-time job, but it can be a part-time gig.”

Although it’s not a new occupation, a haunted house tester’s 24-hour live stream made waves with the public. The stream was an attempt to auction a house where its former owner had committed suicide.

While the stream attracted 56,000 views, none of them wanted to buy it. Under normal circumstances, the home would’ve had a value of roughly $345,000. However, given the odds of spookiness, its starting bid of $188,150 never got off the ground.

Source: South China Morning Post

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