PUBLISHED ON March 13th, 2012
This is a touching story from Kathy Elkins, our account manager in the Portland area:
I received a phone call from a personal friend- my friend was asking for my help and got very emotional when she explained her dilemma to me. As it turned out her father was in the hospital very sick and my friend was looking for our help in accessing her parents’ house for a rodent problem. I couldn’t figure out why my friend was being emotional until she said the dreaded news that all pest control companies never like to hear. Her parents were hoarders!
I continued to listen to her story and discovered that due to the illness her family didn’t have much money to spend on a pest control solution but they really needed help, and worse, that her dad didn’t really want us in his house! I agreed to meet with her, do free inspections to help identify what Eden Advanced Pest Technologies could do, and educate on how the family could help in controlling the rodent issue.
When I arrived to the home, I was pleasantly surprised to see a nice home in a well-to-do neighborhood. From the outside, one could not tell that a hoarder lived inside. Once inside, I found myself overwhelmed in trying to imagine how we would solve a rodent problem in such an environment, but all my experience kicked in and away I went on my usual inspection.
I found rodent droppings throughout each room of the home. I found droppings in all the kitchen cabinets around the family food. I found droppings on the tops of canned food and even on the kitchen table. I found droppings in the bedrooms around the night stands in the bathroom. My inspection continued to the basement of the home, where I was shocked to find where rats had burrowed up from the basement floor to nest around the hot water heater. I continued on and found a dead rat lying on the floor. Keep in mind I had to crawl around objects in the basement because of the hoarding issue. Her parents would have never found this dead rat.
I took my inspection outside and found broken vent screens around the back of the home. I found a rat burrow that was very deep and very active! I found compost bins that had the lid missing and I found a garage that had a door partly open. I thought, oh no, the rats are probably in the garage as well. I was right! We found rat droppings in the corners on the garage and on top of several objects. We found chewing from rats all over the garage. Keep in mind rodents are the number one fire starters in residential homes from them chewing on electrical wires.
I wrapped up the inspection and gave my friend the news. She asked me how much money it would take to eliminate the rodent problem from her family’s home. I sat down with her and her mom and explained the scope of service and what Eden Advanced Pest Technologies could do for them and how much it would cost. I asked her to give me a couple of hours to see if I could locate some used material to help reduce the fees. I returned to our office.
On the way to the office I called our Operations Director, Stan Dawkins. I explained in detail the story and asked him what we could do to help my friend and her parents. Without hesitation he advised me that Eden would donate the time committed to eliminate the rodent infestation at the home, all that would be required was payment for the equipment used in the process. I can tell you I was extremely delighted to call my good friend back and offer her the news. Eden had just donated close to one thousand dollars to a family in need. She was very delighted. She informed her dad of the news even though he was still in the hospital. She let us know that he was pleased with our help and was thankful of the service.
That afternoon we went to work. The rodent burrow was sealed up using a truck load of pea gravel and concrete. The vent screens were repaired, the rat was disposed of and we set rodent traps throughout the home and garage. We have caught several mice and rats from the home. The family has been very helpful in cleaning areas of the home to help us identify the new rodent activity. This job will not end until we have eliminated all the rodents in the home and garage.
I want to thank Eden, Jack and Suzie Marlowe, Stan Dawkins and Greg Prater for helping a dear friend and her family with such a difficult issue. Hoarding and rodents is a recipe for disaster and can be very tough emotionally and financially. I am very proud to have the opportunity to help someone in need, because it is the “right thing to do!”