Forums / Property Investing / Help Needed! / Tennants have maggots on living room carpet

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  • Profile photo of RXracerRXracer
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    @rxracer
    Join Date: 2009
    Post Count: 5

    Ok – finally writing my first post & not a good one.

    We finally bought our first investment property June 2010.
    I did a small renovation – new paint, carpet, landscaped back yard & other minor improvements.

    The tenants moved in one month after settlement – July 2010 (2 adults, 1 toddler & 1 infant)

    Almost immediately, they had a problem with ants in the unit. We put this down to the weather and to persevere with using ant sand. They are still having a problem with ants.

    Yesterday, the manager gets a desperate phone call saying they had maggots everywhere – coming up through the carpet. They found them under the TV cabinet, under the book case and around the back door next to the kitchen.

    Has anyone else had this problem?
    Is this a landlord responsibility? or are the tenants just dirty and not cleaning up?
    The manager will be contacting a pest controller tomorrow.

    Any thoughts or help would be appreciated.

    Profile photo of fWordfWord
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    @fword
    Join Date: 2009
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    YIKES! Maggots coming through the carpet? Sounds like something out of a horror movie. Are the tenants sure that they're not termites? Has your property manager had a look at the house? Have you had a look at it personally? Was the place clean before they moved in? Is it clean now or is it just filthy and unkempt? This would determine who's responsibility it is.

    Obviously if it's termites, it would be the landlord's responsibility. If it's maggots, and the place has been thoroughly soiled by the tenants, then the tenants are responsible for their own hygiene and the costs of the pest controller, IMO.

    For example, my tenants suspect a bee's nest in my roof void. This is my responsibility to rectify as the bees came in through no fault of theirs, and it's my property to maintain to ensure safety of my tenants.

    Profile photo of RXracerRXracer
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    @rxracer
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    Thanks fWord.

    Yes, the property was cleaned – and new carpets installed before they moved in.

    Yes, I inspected the property yesterday. I would say the property was dirty (unkempt), but I could not see any sign of soiled carpets etc. The tenants were not home at the time and they had removed all the visible maggots and I would guess they would have cleaned any soiled items as well. I lifted a corner of the carpet and found around 10 maggots myself.


    THE COMMON HOUSE FLY

    The most common of all flies have one pair of wings and eyes composed of 4,000 image forming facets. A female lays 500 white eggs which hatch into maggots within one day. They can feed only on liquids and spit out saliva on solid foods to predigest it before sucking it back in.  They also vomit up partially predigested food and eat it again. Flies pass on diseases by landing on animal waste, picking up bacteria and then landing on food.

     

    Profile photo of Jamie MooreJamie Moore
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    @jamie-m
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    fWord wrote:
    YIKES! Maggots coming through the carpet? Sounds like something out of a horror movie.

    That’s what I was thinking! Call a pest inspector tomorrow and explain the situation. Ask them what the possible causes could be and what the best course of action is.

    Jamie Moore | Pass Go Home Loans Pty Ltd
    http://www.passgo.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Mortgage Broker assisting clients Australia wide Email: [email protected]

    Profile photo of DWolfeDWolfe
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    @dwolfe
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    I'm going with yikes too!

    If they have cleaned up (and have small children) I am guessing that they are not the cause.

    Is it possible that something has crawled under the house and died? I know in Vic people have possums crawl into their roofs etc and I know it is gross, but you don't just get maggots.

    Do they have cats? Hot weather and fish cat food don't mix……

    Good luck with this one, please let us know how you go and if the cause is found.

    D

    DWolfe | www.homestagers.com.au
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    Profile photo of thecrestthecrest
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    @thecrest
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    Hi RXracer
    Yuk factor of 10.
    Wonder if the ant and maggot problem is related ?
    Have they got pets ?
    Sounds like the pest controller needs to kill the whole food chain before it enlarges any further.
    Suggestion – After the pest treatment, request in writing to the tenants to schedule some weekly inspections inside the house for the next few months
    "just to monitor the situation and ensure the treatments have been effective",  which would monitor the cleanliness of the tenants, or they'd let you off the hook if they refuse. Then you'd know they're the grubs.

    Cheers
    thecrest
     

    thecrest | Tony Neale - Statewide Motel Brokers
    http://www.statewidemotelbrokers.com.au
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    selling motels in NSW

    Profile photo of number 8number 8
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    @number-8
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    It is simple science (I am an X-Science teacher), take away the fly and the maggot is gone. Does the house have fly-screens? Other than that keep the property clean.

    http://www.birchcorp.com.au

    Profile photo of RXracerRXracer
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    @rxracer
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    No more complaints from tenants – I am guessing they have cleaned up and now the problem has disappeared.
    I will be inspecting the property again in 2 weeks time.

    Thanks for all the comments / help..

    Profile photo of xdrewxdrew
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    @xdrew
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    I've been watching too much CSI:Miami … I think if you check the age of the maggots you can probably work out which tenant is missing and for how long.

    I've been lucky .. i have seen most of the impossibles with rental property. The cupboard which opens to streaming cockroaches, the tenant with 9 cats who decides to leave them all behind .. in a kitchen cupboard. The guy who claims his carpet smells … and after steamcleaning we realise its HIM who needs a shower. The 20 yr tenant nicotine smoker who has the nicotine LEACHING out from the walls … you paint .. and the nicotine comes thru the paintwork 2 days later … THAT BAD.

    There was also the sub-letter. Oh sure .. its a two bedroom flat from the outside .. but there were definitely 4 sleeping bags per room. Is it possible for eight tenants to happily live in the one 2BR apartment? You make the sitcom for that one.

    Dont ever assume how bad crazy can get for a tenant. It can be worse than that.

    Profile photo of Jamie MooreJamie Moore
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    xdrew wrote:
    I've been watching too much CSI:Miami … I think if you check the age of the maggots you can probably work out which tenant is missing and for how long.

    I've been lucky .. i have seen most of the impossibles with rental property. The cupboard which opens to streaming cockroaches, the tenant with 9 cats who decides to leave them all behind .. in a kitchen cupboard. The guy who claims his carpet smells … and after steamcleaning we realise its HIM who needs a shower. The 20 yr tenant nicotine smoker who has the nicotine LEACHING out from the walls … you paint .. and the nicotine comes thru the paintwork 2 days later … THAT BAD.

    There was also the sub-letter. Oh sure .. its a two bedroom flat from the outside .. but there were definitely 4 sleeping bags per room. Is it possible for eight tenants to happily live in the one 2BR apartment? You make the sitcom for that one.

    Dont ever assume how bad crazy can get for a tenant. It can be worse than that.

    Wow, I’m glad I haven’t encountered anything like this. Touch wood it doesn’t happen. Just out of curiosity xdrew, these experiences that you’ve had, have they been from IPs within the same area?

    Cheers

    Jamie

    Jamie Moore | Pass Go Home Loans Pty Ltd
    http://www.passgo.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Mortgage Broker assisting clients Australia wide Email: [email protected]

    Profile photo of fWordfWord
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    @fword
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    xdrew wrote:
    I've been watching too much CSI:Miami … I think if you check the age of the maggots you can probably work out which tenant is missing and for how long.

    I've been lucky .. i have seen most of the impossibles with rental property. The cupboard which opens to streaming cockroaches, the tenant with 9 cats who decides to leave them all behind .. in a kitchen cupboard. The guy who claims his carpet smells … and after steamcleaning we realise its HIM who needs a shower. The 20 yr tenant nicotine smoker who has the nicotine LEACHING out from the walls … you paint .. and the nicotine comes thru the paintwork 2 days later … THAT BAD.

    There was also the sub-letter. Oh sure .. its a two bedroom flat from the outside .. but there were definitely 4 sleeping bags per room. Is it possible for eight tenants to happily live in the one 2BR apartment? You make the sitcom for that one.

    Dont ever assume how bad crazy can get for a tenant. It can be worse than that.

    Whoa, if you could tell me where these properties are, I'd be staying away from them. Even if there is money to be made, some things are just not worth the added stress. Just when I was thinking my job could give me an aneurysm, geez.

    Profile photo of xdrewxdrew
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    @xdrew
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    For any investors sake I'd prefer not to mention which suburb it is. Lets just say I'm aware of even worse. There was a period back in the early 80s where if a tenant in 3020 had a dispute with the landlord … he settled it by BURNING out the place.

    When i started looking at property in the late 80s there were still some of these masterpieces being taken to market. Thoroughly burnt out with maximum damage done to both kitchen facilities and bedroom cupboards.

    But thats history. Far as I know 3020 has been nice since the mid 90s.

    It still happens though in areas with tenants who dont even know how to look after a property. In the Latrobe Valley there is a block of 8 flats doing the rounds (its been taken to market about four or five times now) where 3 of the flats have been char grilled and need a real renovator rescue just to become lettable again. And the owner is still asking a price that suggests they are ok.

    Profile photo of traolcoladistraolcoladis
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    @traolcoladis
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    If the house is on stumps check underneath the house for a dead horse…… but seriously I am grossed out about this as well.

    Work out what the problem is. Get the agent to double check the references supplied by the tenant.

    Profile photo of DerekDerek
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    @derek
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 3,544

    Reading between the lines here and it seems as if the maggots are 'self-inflicted'

    Onus is on tenants to keep place tidy. You report the carpet as being soiled and the place is unkempt. What sort of checks did your property manager do before giving your investment to these people to live in?

    Profile photo of MivinMivin
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    @deanmivin
    Join Date: 2019
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    Damn.. to late. Have same problem with my tenants in Miami. Maybe its their kids?))
    Don’t know how, but local carpet cleaning service company in Miami help me with that. They remove all maggots and stains from their feces. Think it’s great decision if you own property at city which is far away from you

    Profile photo of BennyBenny
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    @benny
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    Yeah, about 8 years too late !! Reviving old posts to spam us is not appreciated, Dean. This “local cleaning service” just happens to be your own. No surprise there I guess, but obviously disingenuous, so I doubt anyone will be calling you.

    Give us a break mate !!

    Profile photo of u36mau36ma
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    @u36ma
    Join Date: 2011
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    Back to the maggot topic, we had some in our rental house on the floor and sofas! It was really freaky and confounding until we realised they were dropping from the light fixtures. Someone had put a box of Ratsak poison in the roof, so when a rat ate it, it crawled under some insulation batts and died so we couldn’t locate it. AFter a week, the most terrible odour started emanating throughout the house. It was by following literally my nose up inside the roof with a torch that I eventually found the dead rat, covered in more maggots. I had to scoop it into a plastic bag without gagging, throw it in the bin and look forward to garbage collection. The bin stunk for weeks. I bought industrial strength de-odouriser and problem solved. Plus, I removed the Ratsak box.

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