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  • Buy-to-Let

    One mouse has appeared in rental flat UPDATE

    Hi,

    For the fist time since 2006 I have the current tenant come to me saying there is a mice which has entered the flat.  Tenant moved in Sep 18.  There has never been this problem

    Property is mid terraced.  The flat is on the 1st floor, it had been recently decorated with new laminate. and paint.  If there was a hole in the wall it would have been seen now.

    I am going to visit tomorrow to see if there is anything I can spot. I will also lay a live trap and see if we can get the uninvited guest out.

    Future prevention or advice to tenant needs to be given.

    If this doesn't work I will need to bring in a pest controller.  But apart from putting a bait to kill them, for 3 weeks and advice, what else will they do.

    Any tips will be helpful.

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    I have just had same problem in one of my properties. Came up into pipe in kitchen so just sealed it off and made good.

    No further probs found.   Its cold outside they are trying to get warm lol.

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    Thanks spiritual,

    How do seal the kitchen pipe. Do you mean they creeped in through the sink hole or there is a hole in the pipe.

    I was thinking of putting a suitable sink hole cover.  Also they can creep in via the toilet or shower tray hole.

    Apart from the usual cracks and hole in the wall, I think we need to lay a permanent trap.

    I will only be able to tell what caused them to come in the first place is go an see how the flat is looked after.  Ie cleanness, food, rubbish container etc.

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    Generally speaking there is no such thing as ONE mouse.

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    You are right Bernie, The mouse can travel to get food to take it to their nesting site.  Which could be anywhere.

    I have been to the flat and found only one hole in the wall from the outside, it is where the kitchen.  It has not been seen by the tenant yet but the bin bag which was out on the floor had been gnawed out.  I also was pointed out with the gaps in the sink unit at the back, under the sink where the pipes come from under the flooring. Also the boiler pipes come from under the floor which are not covered. 

    Without asking me he has already got a zapper to trap the mice and kill it immediately, and got a bin so the rubbish is contained under cover now.  Also he has sealed most of the gaps with package foam and cloths temporally and also closes the kitchen door. This is to ensure the mice in the kitchen goes to the trap.  But it hasn't been caught yet.


    One thing I am trying to get more info about is, this is a 1st fl self contained flat, above a Gr Fl closed shop. Now the tenant is claiming that there MIGHT be mice's around the building and I need to call the pest control to get a pro's advice and treatment if required through out the property.  He doesn't want the mice to return and wants me to ensure him that it won't.

    My Q is if I contain/block the gaps I have found now and all the entry points are blocked, bar the usual like flat entrance, windows, toilet, sinks, shower tray's outlet is there anything else I need to do with the flat.  Will this be the usual LL's responsibility fulfilled and the tenant will need to now to do his due diligence.

    Or will I need to communicate with other flat owners in the property.  If the other flat owners have had a mice they would have spoken or might have dealt with it already.  Also if I raise an awareness they might be more weary of wha tis going on.

    Where does my responsibility lie.

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    This is an update since Jan.

    When it occurred in Jan I blocked all the entry points that I could see, bar the sink hole.  At the time it had taken some 1.5 weeks to seal the holes form 1st reporting the issue.  During the 1.5 weeks and since there had been no sighting of the mice.  There was also a electric trap which zaps the mice.  There has never been one mice trapped. And the tenant had not reported any issues since.  So I assumed the problem has been dealt with.

    The tenant once more reported a issue on Thu. 4th evening Apr some 2.5 mths later. the tenant sent me a email.  As I had email issues I didn't get to read the email at the time. I only found out about this today( Mon 8th). I have paid and booked a pest control to attend tomorrow(9th Apr)and this is going to be a 3x 2 weekly visits to re-bait and monitor the progress.

    As soon as the tenant reported the issue he decided he wants to leave.  

    As soon as I let him know I have booked the appointment for tomorrow he said he needs to be there so tomorrow cat be a good day unless they come in the evening.  The evening slot is only for emergency. So I told the tenant the service is only between 9-5pm.  So now he is asking me to book it for Fri. 12th.  I have no objection to this but his demand to let him empty the flat earlier I don't think is reasonable as I have not failed in responding to the issue as soon as I found out. (I did tell the tenant he should have phoned me or texted me). His accusation is that I should be accessing my emails and responding to them daily or next day.  The delay in responding was due to the email issues I had over the weekend.

    I have fulfilled my duty of care and have responded to the issue at hand in timely manner despite the email issue

    My Q  Where do I stand in this scenario? Should I tell him he can leave in the 2 months notice which he is entitled to, but not earlier as there is no need to home him in case of emergency like flooding. If he leaves can I still get the cut from deposit. How will the dispute team look at this scenario? Or can I tell him he can leave as long as I get to keep the deposit?

    I think Mice infestation is a different issue.  If there were more than certain number and they were in the open and clearly allover the place then I can understand. But still no need to leave.  I think if this was my property I wouldn't just pack up and go. I would deal with it.

    Thanks in advance.


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    Tennant not over-reacting? Maybe talk him down?

    My last flat I rented was a victorian 1st floor in N21 London, about 10 years ago.  There were occasional mice.  I brought the mice poison boxes from Amazon, never saw a dead mouse but did the trick.  Not a major issue and frankly I didn't give it any thought, I certainly didn't bother the landlord about it.  Mice get around.

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