No matter what pest problem you have, from mice to cockroaches or bedbugs, it can be confusing to know who is responsible for getting rid of the problem when you are renting the property.
The trouble is that when renting in the UK, pest control for the tenant can be a bit of a grey area. Some landlords may expect you to take care of the problem yourself, but without doing anything that is going to cause damage to their property, or they may want to take total control of the problem.
It can pay to check your lease agreement to see if there is any mention of who takes responsibility for pest infestations. However, you and your landlord may butt heads over the most appropriate pest control treatment to use.
You may have young children or pets and be concerned that your landlord may want to use strong chemicals to treat the problem that could be a risk to their health. You may want to use a safer method, but it may be less effective or slower acting and your landlord may want to act more quickly, especially if you have rats or mice that are damaging the property.
A landlord’s responsibility
It can be useful to know that as the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 is still in force in the UK, your landlord could be issued with a statutory notice if a pest problem is causing their tenant or the immediate neighbours an issue.
Landlords are obligated to provide healthy living conditions for their tenants and complete repair work that doesn’t cause or worsen a pest problem. This means that as far as possible, they must make their rented property as pest-proof as possible.
Local councils can serve enforcement notices on landlords who fail to comply with their duties to deal with pest infestations on their rented property. Should the council be forced to intervene and arrange for a pest controller to take care of the problem, the landlord will be responsible for paying all costs, including any council fines and administration costs.
Who takes responsibility?
If you move into a property and discover it already has an existing pest problem, then it should be reported to the landlord ASAP. It may be that the infestation wasn’t noticed until it became a problem, but as you took on the lease in good faith that the property was fit to occupy, then the onus should be on the landlord to deal with the problem.
However, the tenant becomes responsible for the condition of the property going forward once the lease is signed. If you discover a pest problem after some time, it should be reported to your landlord as soon as possible. Failing to do so may result in you being held responsible for repairing the damage caused and for dealing with the problem.
Council pest control
Like many local councils across the UK, Northampton Borough Council does not offer a pest control service.
This means that if your rented property with a pest infestation, you will need to hire a local pest control service, such as B-Discreet, to handle the job for you.
You or your landlord can bring in our team to help clear your property of pest problems such as:
- Feral pigeons
While it is standard advice to keep your premises clean and tidy to reduce the risks of pest infestations, if you are troubled by a sudden invasion of crawling, flying, biting or stinging pests, B-Discreet is here to help you!
Do not hesitate to contact our friendly team.