Animal Infestation - To Rehab or Demolish

ReHabbing Bio Hazard Issue: I thought I saw every ugly house possible but this one is new to me. The 1,800 sqft ranch, abandoned for 3 years, had a serious rat infestation problem - smells like a barn. Built in 1980 of brick, it’s dry inside, “it has good bongs as we like to say”. The Health Dept. has a long file on this property and must sign off before anyone can live there again. The numbers are OK if the rehab is kept to the $40K range. So the repairs will be a big project, total gut-rebuild and doable if the contractors are capable. Question is: with all the bio-hazard in the walls is it doable at all? Or is this just a demolition and redevelop the lot?
Has anyone had experiences here? Thanks.

I’d be real unhappy to see this house, BUT it is doable. I mean I could do it. If you are gutting the house that is.

  1. Kill the rats.
  2. Tyvek suits, respirators, gloves.
  3. Gut the house.
  4. Dispose of debris.

I would talk to someone at the healt department and find out what they expect. Most likely you will be surprised at how accomodating they can be. They should tell you what they want and then you can go to work giving it to them. Do yourself a favor and pull permits. If you need any specific help PM me I have an Android and emails bounce thru. This job will suck but for a premium a decent contractor will be able to handle it easily. I could.

Hope you meant, “good bones”…LOL


Gridcorp is right on - take the place down to the studs, and put in all new sheetrock and insulation if you have to - I have done that once before, and even had the contractor Kilz the studs. It is all a matter of numbers though …only do the deal if you can stay within budget

I just went through a house not quite as bad as yours. I used shallac based primer on the floors from pets and it completely erased the smell. It was amazing what it did!

Look into that rather than Kilz. I got it at Sherwin and that’s what they recommended.

FYI, it was $250/5 gallons.

Man Estrogen, where were you last Summer when I was looking for a solution to dog pee problems? I tried everything! I never got the smell completely out but did get it to the point you had to get on your hands and knees and sniff the floor in the corner where it was, but killing it completely is obviously ideal.