If you’re a commercial tenant, you’ll know how important it is to properly understand the terms of your lease, especially when it comes to what your responsibilities are.
One of the things that is important to know is who is responsible for pest control on the premises. Should your landlord make arrangements or should you?
Having a proper pest control plan in place is not something you can just leave to chance. If you have a food business, you must have pest prevention and control measures in place by law, and if you don’t, it could end up being very costly for your business in terms of money and your reputation.
So should your landlord sort your pest control? Let’s take a closer look.
Check your lease agreement
First things first, you need to look at your lease and see if it includes anything about pest infestations. Even if it doesn’t, it should lay out in detail what your landlord’s responsibilities are and when the buck stops with you.
Your next step should be determining how the pests got in. It might be an idea to contact a professional pest control company at this point to survey the premises because they will be able to pinpoint how the pests got in and what might have attracted them.
Knowing this will help you decide what to do next.
What are landlords responsible for?
Landlords are required by law to ensure that properties are maintained and free from anything that could be a health hazard, so if they have allowed parts of the premises to fall into disrepair or they have failed to do things like repair cracks in the walls or fill in gaps around pipework, and this has caused pests to get in, they must make the necessary repairs and they could be responsible for arranging pest control. The same goes for things like leaky pipes and blocked guttering which can create damp conditions that attract pests who are looking for a water source.
However, if you haven’t been as vigilant as you could be with the general housekeeping on the premises, the responsibility for arranging pest control could fall on you. This might include:
- Failing to clean up spillages and keep the premises generally clean
- Allowing clutter to build up
- Not emptying your bins regularly and allowing them to overflow so they attract pests
- Failing to keep food and other products in pest-proof containers
As a business owner, the law requires that your premises are adequately pest-proofed and that you can prove due diligence in that you have a comprehensive pest control plan in place. If you don’t, and it’s proven that your actions (or inactions) led to a pest infestation, you could find yourself in legal hot water.
So what should I do?
If pests have been attracted to your premises by a lack of cleanliness or poor general housekeeping, you need to call in a professional pest control company to identify the problem, treat it, and put a plan in place to prevent further infestations before it causes you and your business a serious problem.
If it’s found that pests were able to get into your premises because of cracks or gaps that should have been repaired, talk to your landlord and see what you can agree on when it comes to putting a proper pest control and prevention plan in place.
Another option if it seems like your landlord is reluctant to deal with the problem, is to discuss it with Environmental Health at your local council and see what they recommend.
Need help with a pest problem on your commercial premises now?
Call Contego for fast, effective pest control and prevention that will protect your business, your staff, and your customers.