Pest Control

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by 1stepcloser, 21st Jan, 2022.

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  1. 1stepcloser

    1stepcloser Well-Known Member

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    Hello,

    I moved into a Townhouse in WA last month but there is a large amount of cockroaches in it, I have asked the real estate agent about it getting sprayed they have declined saying I can pay if
    I want it done.

    Just wondering if there is any legislation or hygiene issues here.

    Thanks Matt.
     
  2. Tom Cooper

    Tom Cooper Well-Known Member Business Member

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    Matt, unless you have done something to encourage cockroaches, then it is the owner's responsibility to rectify. DMIRS are the regulatory authority and they will be able to give you advice. The other alternative is to get a pack of bug bombs from your local supermarket, it will cost you less than $15 and the cockroaches will be dead.
     
  3. Tom Cooper

    Tom Cooper Well-Known Member Business Member

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    P.s You can always call your property manager (after speaking with DMIRS) and getting their opinion and offer to do the Bug bombs if they reimburse you.
     
  4. Michael Mitchell

    Michael Mitchell Property Manager Business Member

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    How many is 'large'? The only time I've gotten an Owner to pay was when a kitchen cabinet carcass literally had hundreds of roaches in it and when the new tenant moved in and disturbed the dishwasher pipe they all came spewing out like a horror movie scene. (Prior to that, they [the roaches] were living there rent free under the radar not bothering anyone #vomit, hahaha.

    This type of pest control is cheap and effective. Apart from bee/wasp/termite/other infestation, generally the Tenant would be expected to sort it. This is an interesting one though, usually roaches are a result of dirty living, however as @thatbum has pointed out, maintenance is an Owner issue, so for a brand new tenancy where the property is required to be clean and maintained, the presence of roaches is unlikely to be from dirty living.

    upload_2022-1-21_16-57-32.png
     
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  5. Pumpkin

    Pumpkin Well-Known Member

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    Check the Entry Condition Report and check what they say… was Pest Control ever carried out, and was Cockroaches included, and if so, get a copy of the Cert, and get the Company to come back because it should still be within Warranty.
     
  6. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    Also, were they there on "day 1", when you inspected or went to move in, or 3-7 days later ?
    And, are they small or larger (8mm long or 20mm long ?).......
     
  7. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    We always ensure we've done pest control at the start of a new tenancy, and ask tenants to do it each year and again on their way out. If they don't do it each year, then at least on their way out we know it has been done. It works well and then we rarely have to step in and pay for a treatment.
     
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  8. Astute Investor

    Astute Investor Well-Known Member

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    You are definitely entitled to move into a place which is cockroach free. From here WA-Vermin-and-Pest-Control – Australia’s Tenant Help Service it provides

    When is the owner responsible for pest control?

    As part of their responsibility for cleanliness and repairs (s.42), the owner of the rented property is responsible for pest control (including fumigation) when the pests are evident at the beginning of the tenancy.

    For tenants this means that it is very important when they first see a property to look for signs of pests such as droppings in cupboards and on floors.

    It is also advisable to check if the previous tenants owned cats or dogs since fleas may be breeding and not appear for a couple of months.

    Negotiate with the owner for the property to be fumigated before or within the first weeks of your tenancy if you see evidence of vermin.

    Have this written into your tenancy agreement under the special conditions section of the agreement. If the owner fails to carry out the agreement to fumigate, you may argue that they are in breach of the agreement and ask them to remedy the breach. For more information see When the Owner is in Breach of the Agreement and Requesting that the Owner Remedy a Breach of Agreement.


    Good luck!
     
  9. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    The issue here is that the issue of cockroaches wasn't raised at inspection or when moving in :oops:
    Upon re reading I'd say you are up for the cost :p
    You moved in last month and by the 21st of this month it's a problem :confused:
    You stood a chance of getting the landlord to pay in the first week, but not 3+ weeks later :rolleyes:

    My money say's they're German cockroaches (smaller ones) they hide in and lay their eggs in cardboard boxes, so it's most likely you bought them into the house in the boxes you used to move with, now they're breeding/hatching/multiplying :eek:

    You can expect each female German roach to produce an egg capsule around every six weeks. These capsules typically take about 28 days to hatch. No wonder a cockroach population can develop so quickly!
     
    Last edited: 22nd Jan, 2022
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  10. Astute Investor

    Astute Investor Well-Known Member

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    I know this is a property investment forum but why do you need to be so accusatory and presumptive against a tenant when they are asking a legitimate question?

    First of all you don't know if the tenant saw them early and thought maybe they were in small numbers and the problem got worse. Also your timetable would involve it all working perfectly for the cockroaches to appear. The more likely scenario was a pre-existing cockroach infestation.

    In relation to bringing them into the house in cardboard boxes. I have never heard of this ever and it sounds a little absurd.

    OP - discuss this with the property manager and be firm that it is the landlord responsibility. If I was the landlord i would want to make sure the place for free of cockroaches and my relationship with the tenant is starting on the right foot.
     
  11. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    This is actually a very real situation if you ask any pest controller. Our trusted pest guy has said moving boxes, but more particularly boxes from fruit shops that people bring into the house can harbour German cockroaches, the hardest to eliminate.

    But if a tenant did find pests in the first month or two I would pay for a treatment. That would never happen because we know it is done as a tenant leaves. If a tenant has left without doing it for any reason, we do it.

    The only time in recent years I can recall that we did pay for a treatment was for the two houses that we were lifting and sliding to clear a townhouse site. We told the tenants not to do anything, no cleaning, no pest treatment, because we were about to lift, slide and totally renovate them.

    We knew the houses would be empty for three months, but it ended up being six months, brand new everything, but we still paid for pre-tenant clean and pest control so they went into clean and pest-free houses (because we are good landlords).
     
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  12. Lizzie

    Lizzie Well-Known Member

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    We're not one side of the other. Experience has taught us multiple options that need to be considered and nutting out what really happened can be tricky

    Could accuse you of stridently being in the side of the tenant and bashing landlords. We here know there are always two sides to a story and 27 potential causes to any situation

    As for the cockroaches .. it's been a wet year and superb breeding conditions. Perhaps the landlord could reimburse the tenant for a series of roach bombs, that the tenant could set them off at their convinience ... no blame ... both sides happy
     
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  13. Astute Investor

    Astute Investor Well-Known Member

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    It might be a "real" situation, but if you were determining probabilities, do you honestly believe they came in on a cardboard box or do you think they were already there? Seems a bit of grasping at straws.

    Good to see you are taking the job of landlords seriously. Relationships needs to be beneficial to both parties for both to feel like they are getting a good deal.
     
  14. Astute Investor

    Astute Investor Well-Known Member

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    I didnt say you were making the statement? Not sure why you are talking like i am targeting a collective?

    I am not on the side of either party. I am not bashing landlords, but just dont like people not meeting their legal obligations. The law is there for a reason and not following the law, negates the reason for the law. I would be against the tenant if they failed to pay rent. Meet your legal obligations.

    The OP had just asked a question to seek assistance. There is no need to decide the outcome and point the finger at them as the culprit when we have so little evidence. Its just poor and i feel like bullying.
     
  15. Lizzie

    Lizzie Well-Known Member

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    Legally the cockroaches weren't there at time of occupation ... anything beyond that is up for negotiation (not blaming). I have offered a solution that is possibly satisfactory for both without incurring vast expense for either.

    All I have seen, from your few posts, is to immediately leap in to blame/accuse the landlord in a passive aggressive manner

    All Wylie did was point out that the cockroaches weren't there at the time of occupation, and suggested an option of arrival. I did not see any blaming or bullying but rather an acknowledgement of a possibility.

    Therefore, both sides need to take some responsibly for solving. Calm down
     
    Last edited: 22nd Jan, 2022
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  16. Astute Investor

    Astute Investor Well-Known Member

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    I have not leaped to blame the landlord, but rather said a post was somewhat accusatory. My advice to put the responsibility on the landlord is because i believe on the information provided it is likely that the cockroaches were already present at the time of the lease. The tenant should not be paying for this in these circumstances.

    It is this combative or adversarial nature which i am highlighting of blaming the tenant and obscuring the landlord from any blame in the matter. If you only want the discussion to go one way, then there is no real need for a forum.
     
  17. Lizzie

    Lizzie Well-Known Member

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    Advice to "put responsibility on the landlord" is BLAMING the landlord ... no matter how you try and spin it

    Wylie DID NOT blame the tenant, rather voiced a possible origin ... therefore it is up to the tenant and landlord to negotiate a satisfactory solution that is non-accusatory ... which I did

    Time to stop banging on
     
    Last edited: 22nd Jan, 2022
  18. Astute Investor

    Astute Investor Well-Known Member

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    Sorry i am talking about the poster "Stoffo", not "Wylie" i think you have your wires crossed.

    Responsibility is not blame. Things happen when there is a lease. As the landlord is the one who is renting out the property there is certain legal requirements which confers responsibility. It is not the landlord's fault that there is cockroaches, but legally it is their responsibility to remove them from the property.

    To be honest, i dont understand why you are so passionate and protective towards landlords who might not be doing the right thing. You sound like you have good experience in the business in renting out properties and understand that these are just a part of doing business. As you are one of the landlords who is doing the right thing, you want these landlords gone because they tarnish all the good work you do.
     
  19. Lizzie

    Lizzie Well-Known Member

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    Wylie mentioned the cockroaches in boxes, and it was them you quoted ... I'm am not defending either landlord or tenant, having been in both ends over my many many decades ... this is not a clear cut case, no blame or responsibility can be attributed, a solution has been offered. Time to chill and watch the tennis
     
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  20. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    The OP posted asking for an opinion, I asked a question (unanswered) and gave my opinion on the information supplied.
    Yes I am a qualified pest controller !

    True, and the obligation also lies with the tenant to report in a timely manner, which based on their timeline it took 3-4 weeks to report (that would suggest there was not an infestation on day one).
    Googling a page of legislation and making a black or white decision based on the first line is foolish
    My opinion is that after 3-4 weeks the landlords legal obligation has well past :p

    THIS ^^^^^
    If the tenant thought there was an issue at the start of the tenancy they should have reported it immediately ;)

    At no point did I stipulate a timeline, the boxes used could have been infested 24 days prior to being used for moving purposes, and the roaches then appeared a few days after moving in o_O


    You are making assumptions on behalf of the OP (**) they never said this
    Yet sounds like they took no action or used bug spray (apart from feeding them to make things worse ?)..

    Where did the OP state this ?
    ** you are contradicting what you previously said :p

    Yes this is correct at the time of letting, allowing for a grace period of lets say a week/maybe two even :cool:
    It's not know if there's a hoarders house next door and the roaches might just be wandering over.

    Too many assumptions and not enough info from the OP :(


    Sometimes tenants need to help themselves, this is like complaining the dishwasher doesn't clean the dishes and tenant wants a new dishwasher, all because the filter is blocked :confused:

    Edit: for Astute Investor, after many property's I'm not currently a landlord, I also tried to rent a place over the last few weeks but got knocked back for not having a rental history ! So I've been experiencing both sides and am not biased either way, just sharing my experience and opinion based on the limited information supplied. Cheers
     
    Last edited: 22nd Jan, 2022
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