What's worse than living in a house with a leaky roof and annoying neighbours? That's right, living in a place that's haunted. Imagine, waking up suddenly at 3 AM, and hearing some activity in the kitchen. Probably a cat. Or maybe a spirit. Terrifying either way.
So, to make your 3 AM encounters even more scary, here are a few stories that people posted on the subreddit, Ask Reddit, who claimed to have had paranormal encounters at their home.
My son, about 4 years old at the time, would jabber away in his room by himself. One day, my wife asked him who he was talking to. He said he was talking with Alice and that she used to feed the men who lived here. He went on to say that she died because she couldn’t breathe. Our house used to be a boarding house before World War II.
I watched one of our cats being pulled backwards about 5 feet by her tail. She was walking through the dining area and suddenly was sliding backwards, as if someone was pulling her by her tail. Only there wasn’t. She freaked out and tried to run, but couldn’t immediately, as something held on for a brief second before letter her go. I tend to think that was the handiwork of a 4 or 5-year-old girl ghost who hangs out and she just wanted to play with the kitty.
I've heard a lot of things – screams in the basement, a child and older man laughing when I’m in the shower, furniture being dragged around on my porch, music playing randomly with glasses clinking, and groups of people chatting.
I’ve had lights turn on when I leave the house briefly. This happened for years.
I’ve had important documents go missing over the weekend and then when I walk back into the room to search for them for the 3rd time, they are all neatly arranged in a stack on the centre of the table. All my cabinets would be open when I got home. I felt like people sitting on my bed at night and then getting up shortly after. My blinds would start shaking.
When I was around 9 or 10 years old, I remember waking up to see a large shadow that stood at the foot of my bed.
I was living with my dad at the time. He has a very large (5 floors) terrace house which was built in the 1800s. Every so often there would be an unexplainable event, such as footsteps or voices when there are no one there.
On the night this happened, it was just my dad and me in the house, my sister was staying with my mum.
I woke up and noticed that the door to my room was wide open. I normally sleep with it closed. I then became aware of a large (around 7ft tall) shadow-like figure watching me from the end of the bed.
When the figure noticed me it seemed to ‘melt’ into the floor and the door to my room slammed shut. Understandably I was slightly traumatized by the whole experience.
I asked my dad the next day if he was in my room and he denied any knowledge of the event.
I lived in a big 1840s colonial house with three of my friends for a while. It was set back in 80+ acres of state wildlife property and it was a gorgeous house.
The bedrooms were all upstairs and all lined up down the hall. Our third night in the house, right about 30 minutes after we had all sort of called it a night, my doorknob rattled like someone was fiddling with it. Then I heard the door next to mine rattle, and the next, and the next, all the way down the hall one at a time.
The next morning one of my housemates asked why I was messing with the doors since she had asked the two guys in the house and neither of them knew what she was talking about.
One night I woke up with an intense urge to get out of bed, like my brain screaming at me to get up. I laid still for a while thinking maybe I had been woken up by noise but it was around 3 AM and dead quiet. I went into the hallway and as soon as I walked out into the hall all of my roommates opened their doors and came out too. We were all woken up but no one heard anything, and they had the same urgent get up feeling I did.
We just shrugged and went back to sleep.
Weird things would happen there. Strange objects would show up in the basement or crawlspace, like old suitcases or kids' rocking chair, once a vase, just random stuff.
You would occasionally hear footsteps running down the bedroom hall and down the stairs if you were in the living room below.
I could go on. That house was really strange. I NEVER felt threatened, just weird.
From ages 5-17, I lived in a house with 'activity'. It was all pretty basic run of the mill stuff: footsteps, voices, lights turning on and off, doors opening and shutting, batteries draining, etc. If we started renovating, which we almost always were, they’d get more active and start throwing stuff. I got used to it. They didn’t hurt us, so we just let it go. Even my father started believing after a while.
But the worst thing they ever did was while we were moving in. I was 5. My friend and I were playing in the only room that was finished in the basement while my parents were moving the stuff in. My friend’s parents were helping.
Suddenly, the door to the room slammed shut. No wind, no draft, no explanation. Then the lock engaged with a click, and someone started laughing. We were stuck in the room for two hours.
I lived in an older home for about 5 years or so. My stepdad, who knew the man who had lived there before us, told me that he had hung himself in the attic. I honestly didn’t think much of it, that is until I heard the footsteps.
Like clockwork, every night at 3 AM, I would hear footsteps walking along the length of the attic, which would go over my room. The steps were heavy and you could clearly tell the pace was at a normal walking speed. It sounded like a man contemplating something, thinking about his next move. If it was really the former owner, were those his final moments being played out every night before his fateful decision? Who can say?
There were other stories, but those footsteps, which went on for years, still freak me out.
I went on my merry way to school one day. My mom was home alone cleaning up after breakfast not too soon after I left. So she is doing her thing when she begins to hear music upstairs. She thought to herself that I had left the radio on. She was pissed because we are poor and we try to save every penny we can on our electric bill. She got to the top of the stairs which has an open railing. She looked to the right, and there she saw a pair of legs standing there tapping feet to the music. She didn’t even stay to look up for a body. She noped the fuck out as the music stopped and the legs began to turn to her.
My mom made me sleep with her for like a week. I was 15 at the time. I’ve had numerous experiences in that house though. It made a sceptical, big, burly construction worker with sun-kissed skin turn pale as a ghost.
My ex-wife was staying at her grandparents' house which used to be a church. All the cousins have stories from this place, but my wife was an odd one. They are all listening to the radio one night when the window drapes start moving a lot and nothing but static started coming from the radio. The girls freaked out and started screaming. As soon as they started screaming it stopped and a voice came out of the radio saying, “Sorry to have bothered you, I’ll leave you alone now.” Drapes went back in place, music comes back on.
Used to have regular repeating nightmares where you know someone’s in the house, you walk down the hall, find your family murdered in the kitchen (the old kitchen, before remodelling), and run for the door with only a faint chance of escape before getting caught. Years after we moved out, I learned that my brother had been having the same exact nightmare. Neither of us had ever talked about it before.
My mom worked 3-11 and usually got groceries and what not on a Friday or Saturday night when she knew I’d be home to help bring them in. I was playing video games and she called the house phone to let me know she was almost there.
I went and waited for her to pull in the driveway and was noticed a woman who was nobody I knew, standing behind me in the reflection from the light in the kitchen. She stared at me for 5 seconds before walking into the adjacent hallway leading to my bedroom. I asked my mom about it and she said it was probably my grandmother and to not worry about it.
As a kid, I would make stupid videos with my friends, and sometimes I rewatch them and cringe at our shenanigans.
Quite recently, I rewatched a video a friend and I made in 08/09. The video consists of our usual fucking about. Halfway through the video there is a short 2-second clip, wherein my friend is flailing a toy sword around and screaming in my room. My friend was sitting with his back to the open door. A dark figure was seen walking down the hallway past the open door. The figure is only visible for a split second, but there is no doubt something passed by. The thing is I remember vividly being home alone that day.
My father always told me a guy burned to death in that hallway, and my mother swore that she sometimes heard coughing at night. I remember the hallway always smelling faintly of smoke, even though no one in my family smoked.
When I was a kid, about 8 or 9 years old, I had a TV stand in front of my window. The lights from the street always were on, so, in the dark I could easily make out the outline of where my TV was. I started seeing a shadow figure of a girl standing right next to my TV. I could make out her figure very clearly, hair and everything. I spent nights just looking at her. I couldn’t even sleep. One night I got sick of it and threw a pillow at her. As soon as I did I put my head under the other pillow. I have it a couple of minutes and looked up and she was right next to me at the edge of my bed. I screamed so loud and my parents came in and turned on the lights. A few days later my little sister told me that she has been seeing a little girl in her room. I never told my little sister about my experience prior to that.
Moved from the US to the UK and our parents bought an old beat up house. It still had lead pipes for the water. Nightmare all on its own. Anyway, work proceeded on the house whilst we lived there. We started seeing bright lights in the corners of the rooms at night. Footsteps on floorboards, the house had carpet. I was about 6 at the time and started getting woken up in the night by a little girl, who would dance on my chest of drawers for me. I was freaking terrified. My mum just fobbed it off as me dreaming. Workmen complained of strange things happening like tools being moved an odd feeling like being watched. After about a year of this, my eldest sisters friend stayed overnight. She woke the whole house up screaming, saying a little girl had been in her room. She had apparently pulled her from the bed. The friend left the house and refused to ever come back. Mum decided she might need to do something about it and got some advice. He suggested my mum and the whole family should treat the presences as part of the family. So when we got home we shout, “Hi we’re home. Did you have a good day?” Over time the house settled and we didn’t get any more trouble. We also found out a little girl did die in the house of asthma.
I used to be a server for an old church/school that was definitely haunted. I’d be there early to get ready, no one else around, and I’d hear a scream sometimes. Most of the time, the metronome on the piano would turn on by itself.
It didn’t really bother me though, because I grew up around the 'ghost' of my older brother, who died before I was born. Lights and toothbrushes would turn on/off on their own, pictures would move or DVDs would fall for no reason.
One time we placed candy on a baby photo of him and 'asked' him to move it. It moved. Thanks, older bro.
One day I was underneath my truck, which was supported by only a jack. I was in the middle of working on it, with no good reason to get out at that moment. Suddenly, the overwhelming urge to get out from underneath overwhelmed me. No sooner than I got out, the truck fell to the ground, the jack had slipped. It freaked dad out. He thought I was under it. When mom got home, we mentioned it, and she started crying pretty hard. It turns out the previous owner died in the driveway, under a vehicle, in that same spot.
I would often see moving shadows, and strangely, hear music from the upstairs area. The windows of the old house were caulked shut, and blackbirds would often get caught between the panes. We ended up replacing all the windows but we had to break three inside panes to get them out. One of the more disturbing things happened was when my mother was cooking breakfast. She turned away to get something out of the cabinet. When she turned back around, all the forks set out were bent straight up.
My father-in-law died before my son was born, so he never got to meet him. When we moved into our new home, my son would often be laughing in the middle of the night by himself. No biggie, kids will play with anything. One day, we were finally putting pictures up in the house and after I put up the picture of my father in law, he said, “Oh mommy, why do you have a picture of the man that comes and play with me at night?” He had never ever seen a picture of my father in law before.
One recurring incident involved hearing the voices of my family members who weren’t home. Sometimes, I would wake up to hear my parents fighting, or my brother and one of my parents, but would find myself home alone when I went to check. It would usually occur on the opposite floor as I was– upstairs if I was downstairs and downstairs if I was upstairs, and would stop right when I got onto the same floor. One time was different though. I was brushing my teeth with the bathroom door shut when I heard one knock and my dad saying my name in a strange and teasing voice. When I opened the door he wasn’t there, and when I asked my mom where he was, she said he’d went out to work hours ago (he was a lineman with crazy work hours). I went back to the bathroom and almost right after I shut the door again I heard more knocking. Didn’t open the door at that time.
I didn’t have 'shy' ghosts. I told my friends when I was a preteen that my house was haunted, and when they stayed over they would always see for themselves. One of my sceptical friends saw a shadow person watching her from the staircase. Another was up late with me and heard banging in the kitchen and when we came out, every cabinet was open. One friend never returned to my house because of an incident– we were in the kitchen and heard distinct knocking on the outside of the house, about 10 feet up from the ground out there. When we went to follow the noise, it was returned with knocking inside, then more knocking outside, then knocking inside again in a line towards the room we were sleeping in. When we cracked open the door to peek in, every shade and curtain blew open violently. We didn’t sleep there, and her mom told my mom the next day that her daughter would not be coming back to our haunted house. That was the day my mom admitted that she’d had strange experiences as well.
One of my exes lived in a haunted condo, but the ghost was pretty cool. He would just open doors and cabinets at night. Of course, she had failed to mention this to me when I started staying over so the first time it happened I thought someone had broken in. When I woke her up to tell her and to listen she said, “Oh, that’s probably just the ghost. Hey, Norman? Could you please stop for tonight? I haven’t told him about you yet.” There was one more sound of a door closing and that was it. “You should be fine now. He went back in the closet.” Then she went back to sleep. I couldn’t sleep after that so I went downstairs to check the locks and windows. Everything was secure, but most of the cabinet doors in the kitchen were open.
The next morning she told me all about old Norman. I guess when her kid was smaller, he used to talk to Norman. That’s how they knew his name. He was just an old happy guy that had lived there at one point and wanted to stick around. Eventually, the kid could no longer talk to Norman, and that’s when the door and cabinet thing started. From what I understand, he also used to move things around, but that stopped when my ex asked him to.
He was plenty active too. Over the course of the year her and I dated, Norm made countless other visits at night. The coolest encounter was when we were both up late watching a movie and the closet door opened. My ex greeted him with a, “Hey, Norm!” and he returned the gesture with a knock on the wall behind us.
My uncle’s house which is on a very eastern part of NY was said to be haunted. The family that used to own it decided not to give it to the stableman and sold it instead. The maid and he were said to have been haunting the place.
We always used to joke that you would hear people or things moving at night but since the house is so old, we used to just laugh it off.
My uncle’s friend had her and her sister stay over the house one nigh.t That friend noticed a maid bringing towels down the stairs when she woke. She saw the maid again, bringing, what looked like a percolator, down the stairs.
She was very impressed by my uncle's staff (He is a Neurologist in NYC so he had a habit of spending a little bit extra). She went back to bed and woke up later downstairs to see my uncle and his friend just chatting.
She asked where the maid went and she thought that the maid was cooking breakfast. My uncle had no idea what she was talking about and asked what she looked like. The sister explained and he laughed. He walked her to the living room and pointed to an old picture. She said that was the woman.
My uncle replied, “Yes, she has been dead for about 100 years.”
A strange Star of David pattern used to show up on shiny surfaces in my room. I'm not Jewish and neither is my family. It showed up on a belt buckle of mine and then appeared on my mirror soon after. It stopped showing up and a few months later my sisters were taking down posters in their room (the room was downstairs on the opposite side of the house) and the pattern was on the back of the poster by their bedroom door. The poster had been up for over a year and had never been moved.
No, sleeping with the lights on won't help.