I don’t think there’s a scarier place in any home than a basement. (Except possibly a dark hallway. Or the back porch when the motion light comes on and you fully expect there to be a serial killer, knife upraised, on the other side of the glass…waiting for you.)
One of the scariest experiences I had as a kid was the time I went into the basement laundry room. I don’t remember what I was going in there for, but when I got inside I saw what I was certain was a dead body hanging from the rafters. It was life-sized, it swayed a little, and it was right in front of me. I remember my lungs froze and I couldn’t move, and my eyes slowwwwwwly worked their way up the corpse to realize…
…it was my Dad’s coverall, drying from him having worn it to shovel the driveway.
Even once I knew what it was, the terror took a few moments to subside; and while I tried to remember how to breathe, I kept watch, expecting it to reach out and touch my shoulder.
I think now, as a horror writer, that if I can scare one person the way that suit scared me, I’ll have told a story the right way.