The question “Would you buy a haunted house?” is always entertaining to think about.
There are many reasons, skeptical people reject the existence of ghosts and hauntings. They frequently respond affirmatively to the largely hypothetical question, “Would you prefer to live in a large old mansion?
” However, rising mortgage interest rates and a competitive housing market must make even the most ardent believers in the paranormal wonder, “How haunted is too haunted?” Perhaps one or two cheeky poltergeists are okay, but blood dripping down the walls? Eh, probably ok as well (again: housing is really a nightmare in the U.S. right now).
The horrifying potential that the house you buy might be haunted by the living, rather than the dead, is what that hypothetical ignores. The Watcher, a true crime series on Netflix, explores this circumstance.
The Watcher describes what occurs when a stalker appears to be more interested in a house than a specific target since it is based on the true story of the Broaddus family at 657 Boulevard in Westfield, New Jersey.
The Broaddus’ (on-screen Brannocks) started getting eerie letters from a being that went by the name of The Watcher when they bought the house at 657 Boulevard in 2014.
The Watcher appeared to be keeping an eye on the Broaddus family and appeared to be familiar with their daily habits, as suggested by their moniker. The changes the family was making to this revered home infuriated The Watcher as well. One such gruesome letter says, among other things:
The suffering the house is experiencing has caused it to start crying. You modified it and gave it a very elegant makeover. You are appropriating its past. It laments the past and the way things were back when I used to wander its corridors.
When I ran from room to room at 657 Boulevard in the 1960s, daydreaming about the lives of the wealthy residents, it was a good time. The home was teeming with youth and life. Then, both it and my father grew older. However, he continued to observe till his passing. I am currently anticipating the day when I will once again possess the young blood.
The Broaddus family made an effort to sell their new “Watcher house,” it needs to be said. They first lobbied the local Westfield government to get them permission to demolish the home and divide the land into two separate lots. Just taking the house away would have been a very elegant solution to the problem of a house stalker, but regrettably, the town would not permit it.
On July 1, 2019, the family was finally allowed to sell the house as-is. In the end, the Broaddus family paid $1,355,657 for the property in 2014 and sold it for $959,000 in 2019, suffering a loss of about $400,000. It was difficult for the Broaddus family to sell the house for anything close to its value once the story of The Watcher went viral in 2017.
This was especially true because they insisted on making potential purchasers aware of the house’s baggage. But regardless of how they got rid of it, they were probably delighted to do so.
Who exactly purchased the house? Although the buyers were initially unknown, property records ultimately became available, and the names of the new owners can be discovered here on Patch.com, thanks to the Union County Clerk’s Office.
Although releasing publicly accessible information is not “doxxing,” it seems a bit excessive considering the circumstances and the fact that it is already available, therefore we are merely linking and not publishing it. No further dispatches from The Watcher have ever been reported by the new proprietors.
So let’s go back to the supposition. Would you invest in The Watcher’s home? Except for that one, admittedly very significant, problem. It looks like a beautiful place! Google Maps and Zillow both allow you to view them.
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The single-family home, constructed in 1905, includes six bedrooms, four bathrooms (three of which are full), central air conditioning, and a separate garage. Zillow puts the home’s “Zestimate” at $1,487,700 even though there is no evidence that the current owners are trying to sell.
It appears that 657 Boulevard Avenue’s property worth has recovered even after all the hardship it went through. It just goes to demonstrate that real estate is the one force stronger than fear.
The Watcher’s seven episodes are all currently streaming on Netflix.