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Bedbugs, roaches, and rats – oh my! It is never fun to get a call from your tenants reporting that pests have found their way onto your property or to see bugs crawling along the ground when you go to inspect a property. However, it is an unfortunate fact of real estate investing.
While there are many precautions you can take to avoid pest problems, many of these creatures are persistent. This means that if they want to find a way into your property, they are likely going to find it.
So, in order to help you tackle your pest problems quickly and effectively, here is a quick guide on how to solve pest problems on your rental properties.
Much like other issues that can reduce your property value, some lenders may penalize you for leaving a pest problem unresolved while having a mortgage secured against the property – especially if the pests cause notable property damage. So, in order to learn how to take out funds to fix these problems, click the link below for a free strategy call today.
Pest Problems Do Not Necessarily Mean The Home Is Dirty
Typically when we imagine a home that has cockroaches or other pests, the image that comes to mind is a dirty, disgusting house that is not being properly cared for. However, that is frequently not the case.
Contrary to popular belief, pest problems such as cockroaches, bedbugs, and rats are not strictly attracted to filth. Bugs such as cockroaches and bedbugs are very similar to fleas on a dog in the sense that they usually arrive simply because one hitched a ride from another location and started to reproduce. This means that even pristine homes can wind up the site of an infestation if you or your tenants accidentally have one follow you home from somewhere else.
Meanwhile, rats and mice are scavengers and will enter a home simply to search for food. Even if your tenants do not have food lying out for them to take, once they enter the home they may decide that they like it indoors and will begin living inside of the property to take advantage of the indoor climate.
Naturally, if you can tell the property is dirty and the pests came for that reason, you will need to handle that with your tenant, but if the property appears clean, an infestation may not be their fault.
Handling Rat and Mice Infestations
One of the easiest types of infestations to take care of are rodent infestations. Not only are these pests larger and easier to locate, but it is possible to trap and remove rodents unlike insects and other pest problems.
Identifying a Rodent Problem
Rodents are relatively easy to find when you suspect an infestation. Either your tenants will see them scurrying about, hear them in the walls, or see signs of their presence such as damaged food containers, droppings or burrows and holes for them to nest in.
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Eliminating the Pest Problem
In order to remove rodents you have two main options you can try, trapping them, or killing/repelling them.
If you are trying to catch them, you can lay traps in order to capture them. If the rodents do not fall for the traps you can try to move them or lay bait in order to lure them towards the traps.
Alternatively, there is the option of using poisoned baits or other repellants in order to get rid of them. In these cases you need to be very careful with what you use and how you use it because these substances are often hazardous to pets and children. You can do this by using tamper-proof bait stations and laying the substances in places that are not accessible to anyone besides the pests.
In order to avoid illness while cleaning up after rodents, you should always wear gloves and a mask while cleaning up dead rodents, rodent droppings and any poison or chemicals you have used. As well, you should always clean any droppings or debris with a solution of bleach and water as opposed to a vacuum to avoid allowing the dust and debris to become airborne and cause illness.
Preventing Future Infestations
After you have eliminated and removed all of the rodents and cleaned up after them, there are a few precautions you can take to reduce the risk of your units becoming infested again. This can be done by eliminating nesting sites such as tall grass and clutter in the garage or home, or by sealing up entry points that the rodents may use to enter.
When Should You Call a Professional?
If at any point in the process you find that the infestation is not going away or is too much for you to handle on your own, you should go ahead and call a pest control specialist to come and take care of the infestation for you. They will have access to a wider array of trapping techniques and rodent poisons and repellants than the general public that can be used to deliver more definitive results.
Handling Insect Infestations
Insects are often much harder to eliminate and remove than rodents because they are able to reproduce much more quickly and hide in smaller areas than rodents can such as between the walls and baseboards. It is often said that for every one bug you see inside of a house, there are a hundred more hiding somewhere. While this may be a bit overstated, it is still true that insect infestations are usually worse than they appear.
As a result, if you or your tenants notice bugs beginning to appear around the property, you should probably call a professional right away to get rid of them properly instead of wasting time trying ineffective methods that will simply give them more time to reproduce and spread.
Bonus: What To Do If a Property You Are Viewing Has Pests?
If you are viewing a property that has signs of a pest problem or larger infestation, you should take a moment to consider whether you want to go through the process of dealing with the infestation or whether you would be capable of getting the seller to do it first. If not, you may be better off pursuing a property without an active pest infestation.
As well, a pest infestation may impact your mortgage lender’s willingness to approve you for a mortgage on a certain property due to different types of pest problems such as termites being very destructive and being capable of causing structural damage if left unchecked for too long.
To get connected with the best mortgage lender for your investments, visit us at LendCity. You can apply online or book a consultation with one of our agents at LendCity.ca or by calling our office at 519-960-0370. Alternatively, click the link below to book a free strategy call with our team today.