Bat Infestation in Residential Property Forces Family to Move Out of State

A family from West Columbia, South Carolina, was forced to move out of their home and is seeking to move to another state after dealing with a bat infestation in their residential property. 

The Flanagan’s who lived in an apartment duplex on Osage Rd, West Columbia, first noticed signs of a bat infestation in December 2022. They heard loud squeaking noises and also noticed a bad smell. When they investigated the source of the noise and odor, they discovered dozens of bats roosting in the area of their AC system. They also noticed bat guano (feces) down the wall, which was also on some of the family’s clothes. The Flanagan’s immediately contacted the company that manages their property – Ray Covington Property Management. In addition, the family reported experiencing concerning health symptoms such as migraine and stomach pains, but they could not afford rabies shots at the time.  

Dropped pin on South Carolina Map

How did Property Management handle the infestation?

The property management company arranged for wildlife experts to assess the property. This took place two weeks after the tenants reported the problem. According to the Wach Fox news report, the property management company denied that bats were found. However, the pest control company report stated that bats were observed, and the bat entry point was sealed up.  

Unfortunately, their bat removal was unsuccessful, as the family still had problems afterward. Since then, other tenants have also reported having issues with bats in their units. 

Why does this family wish to move out of state?

They wish to sue the property management company but have been unable to find legal help. Chery Flanagan said: “We are going to move out of the state because there is no protection for renters here.” According to the news report, this statement was echoed by Attorney Sue Berkowitz, the Director of the South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center, who explained that there are not many laws to protect tenants in South Carolina. For this reason, the family is looking to relocate to a state that provides better reassurance and legal protection for tenants. They hope they will not have to face a situation like this again. 

How serious is a bat infestation in residential property?

Is this an overreaction to the situation? A bat infestation in residential property can expose residents to severe illnesses such as rabies and histoplasmosis – a respiratory disease spread by contact with fungal spores found in piles of bat guano. Sadly, if left untreated, rabies is a deadly disease. Histoplasmosis can cause symptoms ranging from mild to severe. In addition, there is psychological distress that naturally comes from sharing your living space with bats. Therefore, it is understandable that this family decided to leave that property since the bat infestation had not been resolved.

Get help for a bat infestation in a residential property.

Get Bats Out has qualified bat technicians in every state who are highly experienced in residential bat removal. We thoroughly assess your property before installing bat exclusion devices and methodically bat-proofing the structure. Next, we seal up all gaps to ensure there are no possible bat entry points left, so once the bats have left, they will be unable to find a new opening to access the building. We provide a warranty for any bat removal work we perform. Additional services we offer include cleaning up bat urine and guano and advice on dealing with your insurance company

If you own residential property, you must take quick action if your tenants report a bat infestation problem. As this case has shown, sadly, the impact on your tenant’s health and living conditions can be great. In addition, the longer bats live in your property, the greater the damage to the building. Removing bats from a building can be time-consuming and costly; this only increases if the work is delayed or carried out incorrectly. Of course, no company owner would wish for this kind of negative news exposure that will affect their reputation and cause strained relationships with other tenants. 

If you require commercial or residential bat removal assistance, please contact us today. 

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Your Local Bat Removal Specialist,

Michael Koski

Get Bats Out Owner and President Michael Koski

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