These renters found their homes infested with rodents. They're searching for solutions.

These renters found their homes infested with rodents. They're searching for solutions.
Posted at 11:37 AM, Apr 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-10 11:37:45-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Two women are infested with worry after they discovered rodents had made their homes into their own.

While she was getting ready for work and getting her kids ready for school, a mother of six made a horrifying discovery inside her home.

"One morning, I'm getting ready for work. And I take my uniform out of the dryer. And it was like half of a mouse. And then when I pulled some more out, it was the head of the mouse," she said.

The woman and her children have lived at Randolph Village Apartments for seven years.

"This one, I just really can't deal with because it's not right. We noticed that I guess the mice it was in a shoe. And they had like little babies, they were in the shoe."

The woman said she reported the infestation to maintenance back in December. Despite numerous attempts by both her and maintenance like laying traps, sticky pads and bait stations, the problem remains.

"They're starting to like eat through the carpet, eat through holes in the walls. We've patched the holes up, but they're still finding a way," the woman said.

Just about four miles away, a tenant at Hillside Court who didn't want to be identified reached out to the CBS6 Problem Solvers, hoping to get help with the mice infestation in her apartment.

"I have my grandbaby a lot. He wants to crawl on the floor but I won't let him," the second woman said.

She said that since just January, she's caught about 31 mice inside her home.

"I'm just so uncomfortable right now. My kids could tell you I'm uncomfortable," she said.

According to Hickman's Termite and Pest Control, mice can reproduce every 20 days and even fit through holes as small as a dime.

They suggested things like bait boxes, putting food in metal containers and covering up any holes in the floor or the walls to help get rid of them. If none of these solutions work, many stuck in this predicament wonder how their landlords could help.

"The landlord does have a duty to maintain the residents or, you know, the apartment in a safe and healthy manner," Jane Craddock, a housing attorney at Central Virginia Legal Aid Society, said.

Craddock said tenants have a few options they can use when dealing with a rodent infestation. One of them is a tenant's assertion.

"That's a legal way for the tenant to get into court to have the court decide how to handle that maintenance issue," Craddock said.

The assertion can be filed after a written notice stating your issue and a reasonable amount of time to fix it is given to the landlord.

If the issue is not fixed, you can then pay your rent into an escrow account and allow the courts to decide to refund that money or terminate your lease with no penalties.

Despite these solutions, these two renters said they just don't want to wait any longer.

"If this was your home or this was your loved one's home, you wouldn't want them to have to deal with that," the mother of six said.