Do You Need an Exorcism? Take the Quiz!
Exorcising a house works on the same basic principle as exorcising a person. In each case, evil or demonic spirits are said to inhabit a body or house and need to be driven out. It's unlikely that the priest performed an actual exorcism ritual, since homes (like cars, cats, and trees) are believed by the Roman Catholic church not to have souls, and it was likely instead a blessing or cleansing.
Whether demons and evil spirits really exist or not is a question of faith, not science. But evil spirits don't have to be real for an exorcism to be successful, in the same way that in medicine a drug does not need to have any active ingredient for it to relieve pain. This is the power of the placebo effect. To the extent that exorcisms "work," it's due to the power of suggestion and psychology. If you believe that an exorcism will rid your body, or your $5.6 million dream home, of evil spirits, then it just might.
If the death in Newton-John's home had happened years ago instead of recently, she would have been within her rights not to mention her contractor's gunshot suicide. Earlier this year a Pennsylvania court ruled that homeowners and real estate agents are not required to disclose to potential buyers if killings took place there years earlier.