If you believe your home is haunted, the first thing you should do is rule out any natural causes for the phenomenon you’re experiencing.
For instance, if lights flicker on and off, check your wiring. If there are cold spots in certain areas, check for drafts that might cause them. If you hear strange rappings or knocks, check out the basement for loose pipes or other things that might cause the noise. Check for mice or other vermin, or even squirrels, if you hear scratching sounds. Doors closing unexpectedly could be due to drafts. If you hear voices, crying, music or other such sounds, ensure that they’re not coming in from outside sources. If you feel lightheaded or nauseous, be sure to check for gas or other toxic leaks within your home.
Those things aside, if you still feel your home is haunted, particularly if more than one person has experienced the same strange phenomenon, then it’s time to find out for sure. You will need a flashlight, good camera and/or video recorder, a tape recorder (voice activated, if possible so you won’t have to listen to hours of dead tape), a note pad and pen.
For some reason, spirits seem to be more active under the cover of darkness, so conduct your first investigation at night with only the flashlight to guide you. Go around to each room, particularly those where odd phenomenon has occurred, and then take pictures and video. At the same time someone should hold the tape recorder and ask direct questions such as: what is your name? Why are you still here? Did you die here? Etcetera. The idea here is to capture disembodied voices called EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomenon). Someone should also take notes of any strange sounds, smells or other activity that occurs during your investigation.
You can also leave video running in an active room day or night to catch any paranormal activity. You might be able to catch orbs or apparitions during the day, so take some pictures then as well. Once you have collected all of this information, you’ll need to review the pictures and recordings to see what you’ve captured.
On a final note, you should also keep a journal of whatever activity occurs in your home, such as the date and time a door slammed shut, an appliance turned on by itself or you heard unexplained rappings. As well, keep your other equipment handy in case you need to record sounds, snap a picture or videotape movement.
If you can now say without doubt that your home is haunted, it’s time to call in professional ghost hunters to verify your claim. The ghost hunting groups in the Hamilton area include Hamilton Paranormal and Haunted Hamilton.
Other Groups in Ontario
Toronto Ghosts & Hauntings Research Society
Cold Spot Paranormal, Toronto
Paranormal Research Initiative, London
Stoney Creek Supernatural
Team Spirit, Kitchener/Waterloo
Superior Paranormal Haunting Research Society, Sault Ste. Marie
Southern Ontario Paranormal Society (SOPS), Burlington/Hamilton
Guelph Ghosts Research & Assistance
Paranormal Hauntings, South Western Ontario
Paranormal Seekers, Durham County
Oxford County Ghost Researchers
Oshawa Spirit Seekers, Oshawa/Ajax
For a list of ghost hunters worldwide visit The Shadowlands.