With the Ontario housing market being very intense the past months I hope it's not too late to publish few stories about service jobs (somewhat recent) peformed by Pest Solution Services involving home-buyers moving in to bed bug infested homes. The title of this post might have had you thinking this article is just a "wouldn't-it-be-crazy-if-" no, this actually happens, and yes, its crazy.
Buying A House With Bed Bugs
Fully Detached, and Fully Infested
The first story is about a fully detached that was suffering with a bed bug infestation like no other. The bed bugs had made it all the way in to the washroom (gone un-noticed during buyer visits) ... and the house had made it all the way to being sold.
Bought by a couple who didn't notice anything wrong with it, it only took a few nights for the call to come in.
One of the new home-buyers noticed red bumps increasing nightly and Pest Solution Services was in for an inspection. Like explained, the infestation was heavy. What proceeded was detailed reports to be made and a treatment to be completed that cost multiples of thousands. These reports would later go on to be used in a possible legal action against the seller who did not disclose the awful bed bug infestation to the buyers. It turns out, however, this dispute was settled out of court, as the bed-bug-free residents later informed.
Two Houses in One Treatment
Next up is a semi-detached in downtown. One of the houses calls Pest Solution Services suspecting a bed bug problem.
You see, before we continue any further, semi-detached and other connected housing units need a different angle of approach. We need to determine the infestation level and find the source of the problem if it persists. Usually you have a problem in both the houses and the bugs (or rats) are crawling through the structure and the infestation, if severe, will not be fixed until both houses are treated. This was exactly what was happening here.
The neighbour next door had an infestation and the bed bugs were crawling through a 4 to 5 foot thick wall and infesting the brand new home-buyers. But the neighbour next door wasn't in the financial position to treat his house, especially after spending money on a few failed attempts by companies who did not solve the problem, as he explained. The new home-buyers here were generous enough to pay around 4/5 of the cost to get both houses treated and their neighbour paid the rest (and the bed bugs also paid the price).
An Unexpected Ending
The last story of this post is another semi-detahced. Buyers move in and eventually give Pest Solution Services a call.
The bed bug treatment was done with normal procedures since the history of the new house was not known. Every now and then after the treatment, bed bug evidence would come up. The bed bugs that would get caught had no blood in them which showed they recently crawled out from deep hiding. Upon questioning the history of the house and this situation, the new owners began to open up about having just bought the house, renovating it (!) and even finding some evidence themselves in the basement during the early days but thinking nothing of it. Now things became a bit more clear. The problem was most likely here before they were, deep behind renovated walls, and the neighbour might have an infestation, also.
The new homeowners decided to have a talk with the neighbours to see if they also experience bed bugs, but they got the door closed on their face; the neighbour didn't want to talk. So what happened next? They sold the house and left...
Should You Get Your House-To-Buy Inspected For Bed Bugs?
Ask the seller about the house's previous and current pest issues that they know of. Get a pest inspection for the new house if you still feel hesitant; you can potentially save yourself from a greater trouble. Based on previous experience, if you know that the majority of the neighbourhood demographic are college/university students, and this house that you plan to buy was being rented to students, a pest inspection is very valuable.
Buying a house and moving in to a bed bug infestation is not something unheard of, at least for the bed bug pros doing it long enough. You won't just walk in to see the house you buy and notice bed bugs everywhere; prospect buyers look through rose-tinted lenses and watch out for the most modern designs or any clear defects in the carpentry. Entomologists look through orange-filter lenses and piercing torches in go-to crevices & hotspots (sometimes even electrical outlets...), and find bed bugs using the technique that's been improving year after year.