Sacramento Serial Killer Home Sells: Sign of Market Improvement?

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Home of the Sacramento serial killer who buried seven people on the propertyThis would be something to read in the disclosure forms when buying a home: Seven bodies were buried on this property.

That probably isn't the exact wording on the legal documents for the buyers of 1426 F St. in Sacramento, but that's what they had to know before the home was recently auctioned to winning bidders for $215,000 -- a more than 50 percent drop from the $500,000 price the home sold for in 2005.

Maybe it was the falling housing market or the spookiness of owning a home used by a serial killer, but the former Sacramento boarding house owned by Dorothea Puente took a long time to sell after going into foreclosure in 2009, and having a last reported for-sale price of $335,750.

Puente started taking in disabled tenants in 1985. In 1988 police found the bodies of seven people buried there. Puente was convicted of three murders and is in state prison.

Why did the house sell now?
The home is in a good neighborhood, one that I've visited on regular trips to see friends in Sacramento. It's near a few parks, is within walking distance of theaters and restaurants, and is close to the state capitol. As for ghosts on the site, buyers Barbara Holmes and Tom Williams of Georgetown look at it as an adventure and a nice place to have a second home.

"I'm sensitive to that, but I didn't feel any spirits lingering," Holmes told The Sacramento Bee. "We are going to make the most of it and if the paranormals want to come in and do their thing, bring it on. My plan is to make it as normal as possible."

At least the home is still intact. The Park City, Kan. home of Dennis Rader -- known as the BTK serial killer for his preferred method of killing, "bind, torture and kill" -- was sold to the city for $60,000 in 2007, after souvenir seekers tried to sell boards from the house on eBay. The city planned to demolish the home, where Rader and his family lived for 25 years before he pleaded guilty to killing 10 people between 1974 and 1991. He's serving 10 consecutive life terms in prison.

If owning a home by a serial killer doesn't scare you, there's one for sale in East Meadow, N.Y. where Joel Rifkin lived, and killed and dismembered some of his victims. The two-story expanded ranch home has an asking price of $424,500. Rifkin is in prison serving 203 years to life.


Interested in tips on buying foreclosed or distressed properties? See these AOL Real Estate guides:

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