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Pest Prevention in Student Accommodation for Landlords

Each year, students pack their bags and depart their family homes to begin a new and exciting chapter in their lives. However, sometimes, in all the excitement, things can get overlooked around student accommodation, leading to problems with pest control for landlords. This blog explores pest prevention in student accommodation and the measures that landlords can take to reduce the chances of an infestation.

a male student is laying face first down on a sofa. Surrounding him are numerous empty glasses and food and rubbish across the room. Above, across a photo frame, the word "party" has been spray painted on in red paint.

Being a landlord normally comes with problems to deal with, but when students are involved, it isn’t a job that is for the faint-hearted at times. For many young people, living in student accommodation can be the first time that they have had to fend for themselves. Unfortunately, often, being unfamiliar with hygiene standards required to keep pests at bay, let alone having an array of people coming and going when socialising, not only leads to a culture shock, but pests may also be joining the party. 

Tenancy Agreements and Informative Pest Control Signs and Guidance

It’s crucial to have clear boundaries in place set out in the terms and conditions of your tenancy agreement, surrounding what you expect from your occupiers. By doing so, it can ensure that you aren’t held liable if the issue has taken place after the property has been occupied and is through no fault of your own with the general upkeep of the building. 

Beyond this, a little education can go a long way with pest control. As for many students, it will be their first time living on their own, putting general household rules and expectations in place can help. Create some signs around key areas where common pest infestations happen, such as around food areas, advising on efficient storage and good cleaning habits to get into. Or, place an overview in a prominent place of signs to look out for with pests and what to do if they discover a problem. 

What to Pay Close Attention to When Inspecting a Property

By law, landlords have a responsibility to ensure that the properties that they lease are safe and habitable for their occupiers. The way to achieve this is by conducting a thorough inspection both prior to students moving in and undertaking routine checks of the property after. That, along with acting fast if a problem with pests occurs. 

When inspecting the property:

  • Check around the perimeter: Examine externally around doors, windows, screenings, and brickwork. If you discover any entry points that a pest could fit through, such as cockroaches or an army of ants, seal them up.

    Also, look for signs of nests forming from wasps or bees. If you discover a nest, do not try and address this problem yourself, call in a professional.
  • Assess your plumbing: An array of pests are attracted to moisture. Leaking faucets and fixtures, and areas of standing water can soon become a breeding ground for insects such as flies if left unattended. 
  • Look around furnishings: Inspect bedding, if the property is furnished, and around skirting boards, furniture, or signs of loose wallpaper. These can be hotspots for bedbugs. Bedbugs may give off an unpleasant odour and leave dark rust-coloured spots around these areas. 
  • Ensure adequate rubbish management is in place: Pests thrive on garbage. If students let rubbish build up internally, or don’t close bin lids securely externally, you may have a problem on your hands with rats or mice. This includes if bins are allowed to overflow, resulting in waste (even if bagged up) being left on the ground. 

Learn more about a landlord’s responsibilities with pest control and how to determine who is at fault should a pest infestation develop.

What to do if You are a Student Who Discovers an Infestation

So, you’ve discovered an infestation within your student accommodation? Don’t panic, the first step to take is checking the terms of your tenancy agreement. There should be a section regarding what to do under these circumstances and who is responsible for certain infestations. You should then get in contact with your landlord and inform them of the problem and where you have discovered the infestation. Be sure to do this promptly, as pest problems can get out of hand fast if left untreated. 

If you or your landlord isn’t sure who is responsible as to how the infestation has taken place, an accredited pest control expert will be able to swiftly determine this through an inspection of your property. 

For further advice regarding pest prevention and a tenant’s responsibility, read our guides:

Pest Prevention in Student Accommodation – How Our Team Can Help

With any pest problem, it’s vital to act promptly and ensure that you use a reputable business to tackle your infestation. 

Confirm A Kill has over 25 years of experience and is a member of the NPTA and PROMPT. We offer a fully guaranteed service on all pest control work. Call us today, and we’ll get your accommodation pest-free in no time

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