Is the Landlord Responsible for Pest Control?

Sep 21, 2022 | Residential Pest Control

Is the Landlord Responsible for Pest Control?
No one likes to discover a pest problem in their home. However, as a renter, you may question who is responsible for pest control. Are landlords responsible for pest control in California? Knowing who is responsible for pest control in a rental property depends on a few different factors in California, such as whether or not the tenant contributed to the pest infestation. Here we take a closer look at pest control and when you or your landlord is responsible.

Key takeaways

  • Common pests found in rental properties in California include bed bugs, rodents, cockroaches, and ants.
  • Landlords are responsible for pest control in rental properties in California, but tenants must keep the property clean to reduce potential pest attractants.
  • If a tenant is not responsible for a pest infestation, they can hire an exterminator, refuse to pay rent, or terminate the lease without negative impact.

What are the most common pests found in rental homes?

A pest infestation of any kind can be a nightmare for both tenants and landlords. While many pests pose health risks to the tenants, others can pose structural risks to the property. While any pest can become a problem, here are some of the most common pests seen in California rental properties.

Bed bugs

Bed bugs are small, flat insects that take up residence in your bed, feeding on your blood while you sleep. While a bed bug infestation can be present when you move into a property, bed bug infestations are often the result of the tenant bringing in the bed bugs from hotel stays or purchasing infested furniture.


Rodents, such as rats and mice, are common pests found in area homes and apartments. These furry pests not only pose a health risk to you and your family by the spread of disease and allergens, but they can also cause structural damage to the property and wiring, increasing the risk of a home fire or destruction.


No one wants to see a cockroach crawl across their kitchen counter, but unfortunately, this is another common pest in the Coachella Valley. Not only do these pests make your skin crawl, but they can spread germs and allergens, posing a potential health risk. In addition, these pests can quickly multiply and spread throughout a multi-family property, such as an apartment complex, making them a health risk for many.


Unfortunately, ants are a problem just about anywhere. They are often attracted to food and moisture, meaning they can take over your kitchen or your bathroom. Because they are often on the hunt for a meal, ant infestations can often occur when food remnants are left behind, such as crumbs throughout the home, dirty dishes in the sink, or leaking pipes.

Pest control worker checking the kitchen cabinets

Who is responsible for pest control?

So, who is responsible for pest control in a rental property? In California, this responsibility falls on the landlord, but the tenant is not always in the clear.

What are the landlord’s responsibilities?

In California, landlords are required to keep their properties in livable condition, and this means pest-free. When you move into a new home, the home should be free from any pest infestation. It is also the responsibility of the landlord to ensure that pests are eliminated when an infestation occurs, even if the cause of the infestation is due to the tenant’s living conditions. However, if these living conditions contributed to the infestation, the tenant can be held financially responsible.

Because pest management is the responsibility of the landlord, it is recommended to have a regular pest management plan in place that helps ensure the property remains pest-free.

What are the tenant’s responsibilities?

While the landlord is responsible for addressing a pest infestation, the tenant is responsible for keeping the property clean and reducing any potential pest attractants. For example, letting garbage build up or not keeping the property clean can attract pests, leading to an infestation. In this case, the landlord is still responsible for the extermination but, as a tenant, you can be responsible for the cost of that extermination.

What to do when the landlord does not provide pest control

If you are living in a home with a no-fault pest infestation and the landlord is not taking any efforts to eliminate the pests, there are things you can do as a tenant to treat the pests and return your home to a pest-free environment. These can include:


  • Hire an exterminator and subtract the cost from your rent.
  • Refuse to pay rent until the landlord takes care of the infestation.
  • Terminate the lease with no negative impact on you.
Excited lady tenant entering a pest-free apartment

Take the steps necessary to keep your properties pest-free

As a landlord, your best course of action is to schedule regular pest management services for all your properties. During these regular treatments, professional technicians inspect for signs of potential infestations, ensure that entry points are sealed, put preventative methods into effect, and, if necessary, treat any potential infestations detected.

As a landlord, you are responsible for giving your tenants at least 24 hours’ notice of any pest control services. In your lease, you can provide a regularly scheduled list of pest services to your tenant, along with a notice that should a pest infestation be found to be due to living conditions, they can be responsible for all charges.

Professional pest control ensures landlords and tenants are taken care of

As a landlord, professional pest management can help ensure your properties stay safe for your tenants, as well as reduce the risk of structural damage that can cost you thousands. As a tenant, having these laws in place helps to ensure your home is pest-free.

Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, the team at Arrest a Pest understands how frustrating a pest infestation can be. Our team of expert technicians is here to eliminate any pest infestation and work with you to create a sound prevention plan. To learn how we can help, schedule your free evaluation today.

Adam Judnich

Adam Judnich

Owner @ Arrest A Pest

Serving the entire Coachella Valley

Arrest A Pest is your top-rated pest and bug control solution in the Coachella Valley! As a family-owned and operated business, our technicians grew up in the Coachella Valley and have a deep understanding of the pests in our area.

We understand that every pest infestation is an emergency, and we offer quick, safe, and thorough pest solutions and preventions for your home or business. No matter what pests are invading your space, our technicians are armed with state-of-the-art technology designed to rid your home or business of pests and help you stay pest-free long into the future.

Contact us today to schedule your FREE evaluation and let our team send the pests packing!

Coachella Valley California Map

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