(Aug. 27) -- For some people, there's not a ghost of a chance they'd ever buy a haunted property. But for others, like Annie Wilder, a copywriter in Hastings, Minn., haunted real estate can be a scary good investment.
Back in 1994, she bought a beautiful Victorian home that she suspected was spooked before she made the purchase.
"Actually, it didn't feel spooky, just out of time," Wilder told AOL News. "After we closed, the previous owner's daughter did ask if we had had any weird experiences, such as cupboards opening and closing on their own."
Turns out, that did happen. In fact, Wilder had purchased a home that was literally Grand Central Station for spirits and ghosts.
"That's what the resident spirit -- the previous owner, a German man -- told a psychic who investigated the house," Wilder said.However, she didn't mind. She set the house up to respect the spirits who were there and established ground rules for those that didn't want to toe her line.
"We're very respectful of the ghosts," she said. "Anyone who moves into a haunted property should announce their presence and let the ghosts know you're there. When we moved in, we removed all the carpets and curtains -- which looked like they were stuck in the 1960s, but we promised him that we'd make it nice.
"On the other hand, I have no problem asking spirits to leave if they are rude to my family, friends and pets," Wilder said.
In the process, Wilder made her haunted house a true home -- and found a way to supplement her income in ways she'd never imagined.
In 2005, she published a book about her spooky home, "House of Spirits and Whispers: The True Story of a Haunted House," which she followed up with another book, "Spirits Out of Time: True Family Ghost Stories and Weird Paranormal Experiences." As a result, her house became somewhat of a tourist attraction among paranormal buffs.
"People started e-mailing me asking if they could visit," Wilder said. "At first, I was like, 'Sure, if I'm in the yard, stop by,' but after the first 20 or so visitors, I realized this is too much."
Wilder started hosting tea party tours on Saturdays between April and October, and they have become so successful that the Halloween tour has been booked solid since March. She credits the success of her unexpected business to the house itself.
"It's very energetic," she said. "Weird stuff has been happening for 14 years. Half the time, people sense different entities. The most common experience occurs to people who sleep here: They will wake up and feel they are floating through the house or see a spirit next to them on the bed."
Current real estate law doesn't require sellers to mention whether the prospective house is haunted, but Wilder believes anyone selling a ghost-infested home should disclose it.
"It should be reported so the prospective buyer can have all the information," she said. "I knew this house was haunted -- I could just tell -- but I loved the house. I didn't buy it with the idea of capitalizing on the spirit. However, my kids were teenagers. If they had been younger, I would have thought twice."
Brian Horan, a real estate broker in Torrance, Calif., has never seen a ghost, but he has experienced some strange occurrences that were definitely eerie.
"I was at an open house with a fellow agent of mine and there were some strange things happening," he said. "An old radio in the back would go on by itself and doors would slam. It was difficult to keep dismissing this as a 'breeze coming through.' "
Although the seller never mentioned "resident ghost" as one of the amenities, Horan said all of the neighbors felt obliged to come through the house and explain to prospective buyers that the whole block was haunted.
In another case, Horan met a couple considering a house, but only after the woman took digital pictures.
"She was looking for orbs that might suggest the presence of ghosts," he explained. "They were interested in one home, but the woman -- who didn't speak very much English -- declined because there were ghosts."
Horan believes a growing segment of buyers are interested in knowing whether a house has paranormal activity and that the real estate industry may have to take that into account.
"When you buy a restaurant, it's location, location, location, and when you buy a house, it's disclose, disclose, disclose," Horan said. "Agents have all types of disclosures that we use. Some are required by law and some are used voluntarily, but we don't currently have a 'ghost disclosure.' It may be coming and it's just a matter of how to create the wording of it. Maybe call it the 'Casper clause.'
"One thing is for sure, if the agent has been told something about it, they better tell the buyer because if it comes from another party after the closing, the agent doesn't want to be the one to have to defend something like this."
The thought of buying a haunted house might scare some people off, but, sometimes, a ghost is just the ticket for good business.
The Hotel Del Coronado in Coronado, Calif., has long touted the presence of Kate Morgan, a ghost who has been haunting the place since 1892 when she reportedly took her own life after spending five lonely days waiting for a man who never arrived.
Christine Donovan, the hotel's director of Heritage Programs, says Morgan's haunting presence has been very good for business.
"Not only is her room  our most requested room, but the book I wrote about her, 'Beautiful Stranger,' is our best-selling history book (we have three others)," she said via e-mail.
Still, ghosts haven't always been popular hotel amenities like, say, a spa, pool or restaurant.
"There was a era -- not that long ago -- when the hotel sought to keep the ghost under wraps," Donovan admitted, adding that greater acceptance of things like biofeedback and extrasensory perception have made it a more positive climate for all things paranormal.
It's one thing to spend a night in a haunted hotel room and another to work in a haunted office. But that hasn't stopped Lenny Layland from having a successful business.
A few years back, Layland converted a purportedly haunted hotel in Longwood, Fla., to office space and has found success with it.
"I knew it was haunted beforehand," he said. "It didn't discourage or encourage me. I didn't believe in ghosts at first, but I've heard enough stories that I'm now more of a believer."
The ghost is reputedly that of the man who built the hotel. Layland isn't bothered by his presence because "he mostly messes with the girls."
Layland hasn't seen anybody run from his business because of the ghost. In fact, he says some have come because of it.
"There was a psychic in the building and she thought it was cool there was a ghost," he said. "If I sold the building, I'd definitely disclose the ghost, but I'd spin it in a positive way."
Sometimes, a certain piece of haunted real estate haunts you and that influences you to buy it.
That's how it worked for Greg Lobdell and Jon Carlson when they decided to purchase the Bowers Harbor Inn in Traverse City, Mich. The building is said to be haunted by a ghost named "Genevieve," who, legend has it, hanged herself in an elevator shaft after catching her husband having an affair with a nurse.
"We grew up near there back in the 1970s, and it was generally accepted that there was a ghost there," Lobdell said. "As kids, we'd go check out the shaft."
The duo have rebranded the business Mission Table, but have kept the ghost. The legend of Genevieve is proudly displayed at the restaurant, and they welcome paranormal teams to investigate.
But having a ghost on premises does require some sensitivity.
"Some of the restaurant employees are intimidated about working late and we respect that," Lobdell said. "Every server has a story. One waiter told me about a woman who kept feeling she was being pushed when no one was behind her -- and, it turns out, she was a nurse!"
Lobdell suggests that anyone considering buying a haunted property go in with both eyes open.
"You need to spend time there and get comfortable with their presence and whether they are comfortable with you," he said.