Grease star Olivia Newton-John hired Catholic priest to exorcise the ghost of a builder who had committed suicide in her Florida waterfront home.

The singer, her husband and two friends attended the ceremony, saying prayers and sprinkling holy water in the rooms of the house, which is on the market for £4.5m ($6m), reports the Sunday Express.

Earlier this month, builder Christopher Pariseletti, 42, committed suicide by shooting himself in the head in the house he had renovated.

His body was found by a contractor the following day.

Pariseletti's widow was invited to the exorcism, but declined to attend, reports Gossip Extra.

It is believed that Pariseletti had mounting financial problems and had asked Newton-John for a loan, which she refused. By killing himself in her property he may have been taking revenge by spooking buyers and reducing its market value.

Newton-John has already slashed £200,000 from the asking price, and TV personality Rosie O'Donnell withdrew an offer when she learnt of the suicide.

"Rosie has decided not to buy the house," said a publicist for O'Donnell. "It just didn't feel right."

An estate agent in Orlando said the suicide tainted the property for many potential buyers.

"Unfortunately there is a grim notoriety to the house and people are put off by that.

"Whoever buys the home will always know that someone blew their brains out in there. It is not the nicest housewarming present," he told the paper.

It is not the first piece of misfortune to have struck a cast member of the 1978 hit musical Grease, with some fans believing a curse has been laid on them.

In 1992 Newton-John had a partial mastectomy after being diagnosed with cancer, only weeks after her father died of the disease.

Her 11-year marriage to Matt Lattanzi ended in divorce. In 2005, her long-term partner Patrick McDermott disappeared when on an overnight fishing trip in California. He surfaced two years later in Mexico, where he had fled to escape debt and child support payments.

In 2009, the 16-year-old son of co-star John Travolta was found dead in the bath after hitting his head in a suspected seizure.