This time of year we love to get a little spooked. We decorate our houses with spider webs, dress our kids up like tiny monsters, and actually pay good money to have people pretending to be zombies scare the living daylights out of us. 

It’s fun to get a little spooky on Halloween, but you don’t want to live a real nightmare. For homeowners, problems that go undetected or ignored can be way more scary!  If you hear eerie sounds in the middle of the night, the lights suddenly flicker, or little bugs invade your kitchen, it’s not a horror film. There might be something seriously wrong. 

What’s lurking in the walls?

You know how the main characters in horror films always miss the warning signs that are glaringly obvious to the rest of us? Here are some red flags you should not ignore.

Flickering lights

Lights don’t just start flickering for no apparent reason. First, replace the bulb. If that doesn’t fix the problem, there could be something wrong with the wiring, and you should call an electrician.


When temperatures cool and humidity drops, it’s not unusual to get a shock now and then. But if it only happens when you touch a light switch or outlet, there could be a bigger problem than just wearing socks on the carpet. Call an electrician.

If you suddenly have a hard time plugging something into an outlet, notice a strange smell or a buzzing sound near an outlet, or the outlet feels warm, unplug everything, shut off the circuit breaker, and call an electrician.

Creepy critters

A bug or two may not be a big deal, but if you have consistent issues with ants in your kitchen, your windows may not be sufficiently sealed.

If you find small clumps of paper or shredded cardboard around your home, you could have rodents in your residence. Mice and rats are known to use paper to make nests. 

What lies beneath

Do your floors seem warped or feel bouncy when you walk? Moisture could be underneath. You may want to get a contractor to come take a look.

Petrified doors and windows 

If doors that used to open and close just fine suddenly get stuck, your foundation may have shifted. 

If you’re having trouble opening and closing windows, try cleaning the tracks. A spray lubricant may be all you need. If that doesn’t work, try adjusting the spring inside the window jamb. If that doesn’t work, the wood may be warped or your foundation may have shifted.

A foul stench

If after a good, deep cleaning, your home smells a little “off” or musty you might have a mold issue. Mold can cause eye and nose irritation as well as respiratory issues. Don’t delay, call someone to come check it out.

Bubble, bubble toil and trouble 

Drains in your home that keep backing up, are a sign to call a plumber. Have him check for blockage in your pipes. Other signs could be decreased water pressure, gurgling noises, and stains around your drains. You may want to call in a plumber to check it out.

Bubbles in your paint are a whole different issue. It could mean some water is getting in through the exterior wall. Moisture can also make paint or wallpaper peel. 

No longer white as a ghost

If your ceiling is discolored, it’s often due to water damage. If this is a new issue, check it out ASAP; it could be an active leak. It could also be a sign of a previous leak. Either way, you should have an expert come look at it. If there’s moisture in the walls, it could lead to much bigger problems. 

If you have any of these issues in your home, putting the blanket over your head or closing your eyes won’t make them disappear. Be brave and call in an expert. 

5 Points Realty takes the fear out of buying and selling homes. Give us a call when you’re ready.