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Multi-unit properties mean multiple homes for pests

With multiple units in one building, apartment and condo complexes offer pests a plethora of different food sources and environments in which to shelter. This means the property management industry faces pest issues on a daily basis.

Infestations in rental properties must be eliminated immediately, as they can lead to serious financial losses – it is highly improbable that anyone will lease or rent homes or office buildings with pest problems, which puts financial strain on property owners.

When pest issues go unchecked, commercial spaces can experience structural damage, and tenants can also be exposed to any number of diseases.

To help you guard against common pest problems in your multi-unit property, here are our top tips.

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are attracted to the carbon dioxide and warmth that humans emit, which makes them particularly drawn to multi-unit buildings with lots of turnover, like hotels or rental apartments.

Unfortunately, bed bugs multiply quickly. In just six months, a few of these pests can turn into a full-on infestation of more than 13,000 bed bugs. Adults can also survive for a year without feeding, so even if your property remains empty, the bed bugs might just hang around.

To guard against an invasion of bed bugs, clean and vacuum common areas regularly and seal cracks in walls. Look out for live or dead bugs or their skins, and use light coloured sheets so it’s easier to see those red spots.


The house mouse and the Norwegian rat commonly find their way into buildings in search of food, water, and shelter. Found in crawlspaces, basements, attics, and in the walls of buildings, rodents gnaw on electrical wiring, insulation, and wood beams. This behaviour can lead to structural damage and even electrical fires.

To prevent a rodent infestation, you first need to be able to identify when you have a problem.

Gnaw marks on electrical wiring, rub marks along the base of walls and tiny holes in the wall near the floor are all signs of rodent activity. You also may notice small, pellet-like droppings.

To combat rodents in your commercial operation:

  • Conduct regular maintenance to ensure there are no openings for the rodents to get in.
  • Ask your staff to stay alert, the quicker they report a sighting the quicker the problem can be dealt with.
  • If you are worried about rodents call in the experts. It’s much easier to prevent them from setting up shop in your business than deal with the fallout if they do.


The most common cockroach home invader is the German cockroach. The insect is frequently found in apartments and other properties where people live in close quarters.

As they are associated with filthy conditions, their mere presence can be costly to property managers. However, cockroaches also pose various health threats and some can can even bite humans.

To stop cockroaches invading:

  • Vacuum all cracks and crevices.
  • Keep waste containers washed and clean.
  • Increase ventilation to prevent condensation.


Foraging ants are attracted by food and water, and enter multi-unit buildings through the tiniest of cracks to scavenge for edible items. Controlling them is difficult because they leave an invisible pheromone trail for others to follow once they find a food or water source.

No one likes an area that is unclean, full of germs and detritus, that is no one except for ants. So to prevent an invasion from ants, the key is to keep your property sanitary.

To prevent an invasion from ants:

  • Keep your structure sanitary.
  • Prioritise maintenance and repair any cracks in walls, foundations and windows.
  • Keep doors, windows, and entry points sealed.
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*Your account must be current, under contract for more than 60 days, and you must be compliant with sanitation and structural requests as noted in Orkin Canada's service reports.

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What our customers have to say

Jason Retail

Our technician is awesome. Thanks for making the transition easy. Love the metrics and transparency of the program.

Herb R. Hospitality

Our technician was very informative and took the time to explain the problem I was having with rodents and how they react to Orkin's product. His personal care made my situation so much easier.

Elaine C.

Our representative is very informative and quickly goes about his work. I am very pleased with his explanation for placing bait stations where he did and so on. Sometimes it is hot and he carries right on with what he has to do. It is a nasty job.

Franchise Manager Food Services

I've been a customer for almost 7 years and Orkin have never been disappointed.

Jag D. Arts

The service manager is great as he has pointed out lots of things I need to do to prevent mice from coming into the building. He is very knowledgeable and knows what he is talking about.

Matthew P. Hospitality

I'm glad to see that you acquired dogs for bed bug solutions. Works very well!!!!!!

Franchise Manager Food Services

Our business requested additional services and the management visited our site to ensure the proper help was given, and was very helpful.

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