Dead Body Found In Open House

Image created by Simon Howden, provided courtesy of

No, this isn’t a home staging consultant’s tribute to Halloween.  The owner actually died in the house and the agent was the first on the scene, showing the home to a potential buyer.  In Texas, if the owner died of natural causes, you don’t have to disclose it.  However, in this case, that buyer will probably figure it out without reading the disclosure statement.  Real estate agents never know what they’re going to walk in on when showing a house to their clients.  Besides the dead owner, lots of other interesting findings have shown up in houses during a showing.

Attention Realtors:  What interesting things have you walked in on during your career of showing houses?

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7 thoughts on “Dead Body Found In Open House

  1. i once showed a house to a young couple with toddler. as i was showing the parents around, the toddler lead us to a window and pointed to the back yard. there was a homeless man ‘playing w/ himself’. ugh. and i was just about to say “this is a great neighborhood!”

  2. Herman:
    You could have saved the day by mentioning that the neighborhood had “friendly, outgoing neighbors.” Or even better, you could have passed it off as extreme form of a house blessing, bringing good luck, like planting the St. Joseph statue upside down but more ecologically Earth friendly.

    Of course a really aggressive real estate agent would have said,”I hope you’re as excited about this house as HE is. He must REALLY like this house so we’d better make an offer quick before it’s too late.

  3. I’m fairly certain this was an NCIS episode, too. If you were the realtor- how do you react? I can’t even begin to imagine. I’m sure I would’ve screamed. Not out of fear, but shock value.

    • Marie:
      I would have definitely rescheduled the open house for a later date and encouraged my clients to lower their offer.

      Actually, this is not uncommon, especially in abandoned houses in bad neighborhoods. A Realtor friend of mine found a dead homeless guy in an abandoned house. She gave the following advice, touch nothing, immediately leave, and notify the police. I’d also suggest dropping the listings agent a note too.

  4. This cracked me up: “I hope you’re as excited about this house as HE is. He must REALLY like this house so we’d better make an offer quick before it’s too late.”

    I guess it shows juts how important it is for realtors to think quickly when faced with something like this or similar scenarios.

  5. That’s actually really sad.

    Good thing I haven’t experienced something like that nor something like Herman’s story.

  6. Jason:
    What a sheltered Realtor life you’ve led. Forget the rush of the sale, you want a rush, try locking your keys in the car in the worst possible neighborhood you can think of. I did that once. And less than 3 minutes later, 7 people volunteered to break into my car for me. By the way they looked, I didn’t doubt their ability to do what they promised. Luckily I was able to find a coat hangar and take care if it myself. Impressed a few while I was at it. Got “street cred” that day.

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