Last Updated on October 21, 2023 by Kelvin Nielsen
Living in a pest-infested home can be incredibly stressful. Pests are dirty, irritating, and unwanted creatures that can turn your seemingly comfortable home into a living hell.
So, what exactly should you do when your Arkansas home is infested by pests? Can you hold the landlord liable? Can you withhold rent until the landlord fixes the issue? Can you fix the issue and deduct the expenses from future rent payments?
Well, if you are looking to know what you can do as a tenant in Arkansas, this blog has you covered.
Who is Responsible for Pest Control in Arkansas – Landlord or Tenant?
What types of pests are common in Arkansas?
Arkansas is arguably one of the most beautiful states in the country. It is home to beautiful lakes, mountains, and a smorgasbord of attractions. You are never really far from the city but you’re just close enough to the country as well.
But with all that gorgeousness comes one major issue – pests. While we get to enjoy the breathtaking views and beautiful wildlife, there are also a few sneaky pests to contend with.
The most common types of pests in Arkansas include the following.
- Fire ants
- Asian lady beetles
- Earnest Harvest Mice
Pests like termites, cockroaches, rats, and mice can especially cause significant damage when they infest a home. Matter of fact, they can make your home to become uninhabitable.
What kind of damage can pests cause to your Arkansas rental home?
If pests invade your Arkansas home, they can cause the following damage.
- Termites eat around the clock. They can cause damage to a home by eating wood and wood products. Termites like to hide windowsills, floors, and beneath the furniture.
- Rats and mice like to chew. They like to get snuggled in for nests, including burrowing in electrical appliances, furniture, and appliances. And as they travel through your home, they can cause contamination through their feces and urine.
- Roaches can cause structural damage to a home. They like living in dark and damp spots, like under stoves, sinks, floor drains, and refrigerators. Besides causing damage to your home, these can also cause serious allergy issues.
What are the telltale signs of pest damage in your Arkansas home?
The following are various signs that your Arkansas home has a pest infestation.
- Damage to your home and plants
- Unexplained noises
- Tracks and markings
- Bad odors
- Dead bugs
- Live bugs
- Chewed furniture
- Blood spots
- Gnaw marks on walls and furniture
- Small openings or holes
Left unaddressed, pests can cause significant damage to a home.
Who between the landlord and tenant is responsible for pest control in your Arkansas home?
Well, the state of Arkansas has little to say about pest control. Out of all the fifty U.S states, Arkansas is the only state without a warranty of habitability. As such, this means that your landlord doesn’t have a specific responsibility to exterminate pest infestations like roaches, rates, and termites.
In addition, Arkansas landlords are only required to rent out a unit “as-is” and aren’t generally responsible for making repairs.
Are landlords required to provide pest control in Arkansas?
No! The only exception is if the lease states so. If the lease specifically says that the landlord is responsible for pest control, then you can hold them liable for repairs if the pest infestation occurs due to their actions (or inactions).
In such a case, you must notify them in writing of the pest infestation. They will then have 30 days to act. If they don’t, you may be able to break the lease legally without penalty. You may also sue them for any damages that may result from the pest infestation.
Can termites make your Arkansas home uninhabitable?
Absolutely! If rodents, termites, cockroaches, and other types of pests invade your home, your home may become unlivable. This is especially true if the problem isn’t addressed sooner. A pest infestation can result in serious issues like water leaks and electrical faults.
So, are landlords responsible for pest control in Arkansas? No! Arkansas is one of the most landlord-friendly state in the country. As such, landlords are only required to rent out their properties “as-is”, and is the only state in the country without a warranty of habitability.
Disclosure: The content herein isn’t a substitute for advice from a professional attorney. It’s only meant to serve educational purposes. If you have a specific question, kindly seek expert attorney services.
Sources: AR Code. Tit. 18. Ch. 17, https://www.callmccauley.com/blog/2020/october/most-common-type-of-pests-in-arkansas/, https://ualr.edu/socialchange/2022/04/01/landlord-tenant-rights-arkansas-failure-to-adopt-habitability-requirements-for-tenants/
Hi, I’m Kelvin Nielsen, an experienced landlord and accomplished real estate lawyer. My focus is on answering your questions about renting in the hopes of making your life as a renter or a landlord a bit easier.