DAVENPORT — There are a lot of things that can be scary about a house: a sky high utility bill in the summer, grass that keeps getting taller and needs mowing, or the pool that begins to turn a shade of green.
Still, those are all the normal things that homeowners have to cope with, and after a while they’re more like to seem annoying than scary.
But what about lying in bed at night, and for no reason at all …. the overhead fan suddenly turns on.
Or the lights switch on … then turn off.
If that sounds like it might be a bit unnerving, could it be that the house is possibly …. haunted?
An Flamand has to wonder.
“My husband and I were watching ‘Ghost Hunters’ one night,” Flamand said. “My husband said, ‘If there was ever a time when I got freaked out, it was in that house.’ ”
The house he was referring to wasn’t their current home, but a short term vacation rental property that Flamand manages through her property management firm, USA Vacation Homes. As the Halloween season approaches and the theme parks are about to start launching special events like Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios and Mickey’s Not Very Scary Halloween Party at Disney World, Flamand said she can’t help but wonder about the unusual occurrences at this one home.
Of all the properties that she manages, this one has stood out for a series of … well, eerie coincidences.
That includes the time her husband went to the property with her, and as he was standing inside the home, he got the strangest sensation that they weren’t alone.
“He felt like someone was standing behind him,” Flamand said. But when he turned around, it was only to discover they were alone.
They shrugged it off — at first.
“We didn’t make too much of it,” she said. “But weird things started happening.”
But example, they got an emergency call about the property, because the fire alarm had gone off — and wouldn’t stop ringing.
“They had to actually disconnect the box and take it off the wall because it wouldn’t stop,” she said.
A guest mentioned that one of her pets appeared to afraid in the home.
“She said, ‘My dog is nervous in the house,’ ” Flamand said. “The next day, she said the smoke detectors kept going off, and we had just changed the batteries.”
But the weirdest coincidence, she said, is that multiple guests told her that the fans would turn on in the middle of the night, and the lights would go on and off.
Fortunately, it never upset the guests, who thought it was odd, but not necessarily a sign of another Amityville Horror-type house. Curiously, though, Flamand noted, they mainly noticed these things happening at night.
“Every guest was very light about it,” she said. “They reported it, but they were light about it. It was always happening in the middle of the night. It never happened in the day. Of course, they could have been out at the theme parks in the day and didn’t know it was happening. But people think things that happen at night are more creepy because it’s dark.”
Still, all these reports of lights going on and off, of ceiling fans whirling for no reason, made the Flamand family wonder. So in true Ghost Hunters fashion, she sent her teenage sons and their friends to the house one night to investigate.
She doubts they’ll ever forget that night.
“The kids went to the house because we wanted to know if there was really something for my guests to be worried about,” Flamand said. “They had the weirdest things happen that night.”
One of the boys was sitting on the floor watching television, while a friend was lying on the bed. The son sitting on the floor thought he felt the bed moving against him.
“He said, ‘Can you stop moving the bed,’ and his friend said, ‘I’m not moving the bed,’ ” Flamand said.
They also left a tape recorder on. When they played it back, Flamand said, the teens could hear themselves talking — but that’s not all they heard.
“You can literally hear someone whistle,” she said. “It is very weird. The whistling is weird.”
“Then they thought they were done with the investigation,” she said. “Suddenly the fans started going. Five minutes later, the lights go on and off.”
It may have rattled the boys a bit, she added.
“When I asked them, do you want to do this again, they said no,” Flamand said.
Flamand says the home is fairly new, so she doubts anything odd ever happened in there, and it’s primarily been a vacation property, not one that a family has lived in permanently. And she also wonders if there isn’t a perfectly logical explanation. The house is at the front of the subdivision, and is right next to the security gate, she noted, which opens and closes all day.
“We thought maybe the gate has an impact on the electricity,” she said.
The family never has solved the mystery. But they know if tourists coming to Central Florida want to book a vacation home for themselves and their family right in time for spooky events like Halloween Horror Nights, they can do so by logging on to with www.usa-vacation-homes.com.
Contact us at FreelineOrlando@gmail.com.