1 Laveta Place, Nyack, NY

Status: America’s Only Legally Haunted House; Residence 

A Reminder this Property is not only Private but also Someone’s Residence. Do Not Approach the Property or Bother the Owners.


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History and Paranormal Activity

This 3 story Victorian house was built in 1890. It stands at the end of a cul de sac and commands truly breath-taking views of the Hudson River from almost every window.

Based on the latest real estate listing the interior is just as stunning as the views provided.

It was last sold in March of 2021 for nearly 1.8 million USD and is currently valued at just over 2 million for the tax rolls.

Just like living in paradise, right? Hmmm. . .

Just one little issue, this perfect little piece of paradise is the only legally declared haunted house in the United States. But the ghosts are friendly so that’s ok; apparently not.

Prior to the 1970’s there are no reports of any ghosts or paranormal activity in the house or on the property. The house was left abandoned for part of the 1960’s and this may have provided the living impaired to move in.

No history of a murder or premature deaths; it’s possible no one has ever even breathed their last inside this house.

After the period of abandonment, the Ackley family – hence the house’s name - bought the house and moved in. They had some paranormal experiences including the husband – George - seeing a set of disembodied moccasin wearing feet walk by him in the hallway above the staircase, the wife – Helen – saw an apparition wearing either a Colonial or Revolutionary war uniform while she was painting the entryway; even their daughter – Cynthia – ,who was a teenager at the time, had her bed shake until she politely asked them to stop so she could sleep.

The house was also known as the neighborhood “haunted house” by the kids living in the area.

On a side note, I lived in one of these neighborhood haunted houses for a while as a kid but we, also, learned to live with the doors slamming on their own, the bathroom door locking itself – this is why I can pick a bathroom door lock to this day lol – so I completely understand where this family is coming from.

Hell, my bed shakes almost every night now I just ignore it or tell ‘them’ to stop it.

This is not the Amityville Horror house or the Conjuring House.

Helen Ackley even wrote an article for Reader’s Digest in the 70’s entitled “Our Haunted House on the Hudson” thus passing the story into a forever written format.

In 1989 it became time for the Ackleys to downsize and sell the house. Jeffery and Patricia Stambovsky put an offer in on the house and it was accepted and the down payment was put down.

Now the Ackleys say they mentioned the haunting multiple times during all of this but the Stambovskys say it was never mentioned and when they found out they wanted their down payment back. Yah, no, legally if you change the mind after the down payment the seller keeps the money.

So off to court it went saying the Ackleys didn’t represent the house properly and that said ghosts would decrease the value of the house. The State of New York said “caveat emptor” or “buyer beware” buying a house is hard enough without adding ghosts into the mix.

So off it went to the New York Supreme Court – yah, can you say tenacious – where it was ruled because the issue was reputational and not physical caveat emptor didn’t apply. The haunting had been reported in a National publication and could not be reversed.

In other words, according to the Supreme Court of the State of New York, this house is legally haunted.

The down payment was returned to the couple who had proved incredibly stubborn; and the house was eventually sold to someone else. The house has gone through numerous owners since then – which has been called unusual – many of them creative people like a screenwriter and a musician but no one has said anything about ghosts or paranormal activity since the Ackleys.

The Ackleys have never retracted their claims.

This case is still taught in many law school classrooms in the United States and other Countries.

Let this be a lesson for everyone selling a haunted house – especially in New York State – that disclosure is your best friend apparently.

Did my family disclose the house we lived in was haunted when we sold it? Hmmmm. . .