• Report:  #877

Complaint Review: Orkin Exterminating Co Inc - Glendale Arizona

Reported By:
- Litchfield Park, AZ,

Orkin Exterminating Co Inc
7060 W. Augusta Glendale, 85340 Arizona, U.S.A.
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On August 17, 1999 I bought a home in Litchfield Park, AZ. The home was previously owned by an elderly lady who had recently passed away. Orkin had the termite contract on the home for the past ten years. Therefore they had been treating the home since 1989. The executor of the home stated the contract was assumable to a first time buyer of the home.

Orkin did the inspection and found no evidence of termites on July 1999. Only treatment and damage noted on the inspection form was in the kitchen and master bedroom. They stated any damage was or would be fixed. My realtor and I looked closely at the termite inspection and found nothing out of the ordinary. She said she often sees similar ones. Orkin, we thought, was a good company and they had been servicing the home for 10 years, therefore if there were any future problems with termites it would be handled and there should be few, if any, because the house had been under warranty since 1989. Two days after purchase a licensed contractor, Maggard's Construction #135136, took out a wall between the living room and family room and found extensive termite infestation in the walls. I then looked beneath old carpet and saw the whole house had been recently treated, except for a crack covered by a termite tube leading from the treated wall into the living room.

Orkin came out a treated the home again. It didn't work! Called another termite company to get 2nd opinion, Bill Trott's Pest Control. He stated there was evidence of live termites in all three bedrooms, the kitchen, living room and the garage. (He didn't inspect outside.) Orkin and an Inspector from the Pest Control Commission came out. They didn't agree with Bill Trott. They also thought it was old infestation.

Then I found out that Orkin had sent a drywall and paint company out in August to paint all the ceilings in the bedrooms because there was so much termite activity and damage, and from March until August 1999 the board trim in all the bedrooms, the garage, and the living room had been replaced as well. Portions of the wall which had been removed by Maggard's, contractor, had also been replaced, therefore Orkin knew of termite activity and damage throughout the house, not only in the kitchen and master bedroom wall floor trim, but in the very area where the wall was removed two days after I moved into the house.

The "old" infestation the commissioner and Orkin saw was in fact new because it had occurred after the painting. Therefore Orkin should have caught this when they did their inspection just as the other Bill's Pest & Termite Control did.

The following companies came out and found extensive termite activity: Terminix, Sears Termite and Pest Control, Patriot Pest and Termite Control, and Burns Pest Control. All stated the house either should not have passed or the damage should have been noted. They also found extensive active termite activity in all three bedrooms, garage, kitchen, and living room . Previous termite damage was observed not only in the baseboard trim and in the bedrooms and bathrooms, but the wood beam (earth to home) leading from earth up into roof in the Arizona room, Master Bathroom boards, West roof, Attic beam near west roof area, 20 foot beam--very visible on east side of home, damage to the "new" replaced board in garage, bathroom crawl space, and living room support beam. October 26, 1999 Orkin refused to honor their contract which states a first time buyer of home can assume the loan. They refuse to fix the areas of the home not listed on their report and stated it was "old" damage.

Old damage"? Orkin had the contract for the 10 years, therefore, it would be old. Why wasn't this damage noted on the Inspection form? Why did all the other termite inspectors find the damage, yet Orkin did not? On the form #8E states Visible evidence of previously treated infestation, which is now inactive, was observed. This box was not checked, yet the whole house had been retreated, not just in the areas of the Kitchen and the Master Bedroom. 8C states Visible evidence of infestation was noted; proper control measure were performed. The house had been treated three times this year prior to July 14, 1999.

It was treated on 3/19/99, 3/30/99, and 5/12/99 by Orkin. Therefore, Orkin knew they had an existing problem and their treatment policy was not working. Please continue to note that after the ceilings were painted the termites had reappeared.

The treatment used on this home also must be questioned. The home on the outside has an average of 3 feet to 6 feet between drill holes. According to the Commission, the standard should be 12 to 24 inches. The outside of the home has sporadically been treated. The area were I, as well as the termite men, saw termites entering into the home from the outside had not been treated in years and the drill holes were so far apart they couldn't have been effective.

The question arises again, why did the elderly lady paid her yearly dues without fail, yet this home is infested with termites? Orkin inspected and treated the home in 1998 one time that I am aware of because of the records I do have.

I am a single parent with two small children, one which has medical problems.

I have a complaint in Orkin's regional office. No one has spoken to me, nor will they. They will not allow me to view the records on my home in their office unless a manager is there to witness my viewing. I have made 10 phone calls and left ten messages, but not once has anyone returned my calls.

I have requested mediation through the Termite Control Commission. I have begged Orkin to treat my home, but they refused. They will not accept responsibility for the home they had under warranty for 10 years nor for their faulty report.

Ten years with a company and the house is infested?????????????????????????? ????????? An old lady by herself alone??? Now, a single mother, alone, by herself with a new mortgage, and the expense of getting another company to treat the home. I cannot even sell the house because the termites are active. Damage to home is unknown except what is visible. Orkin says they will not repair that damage because it is old damage.

THE BOTTOM LINE IS I WOULD NOT HAVE PURCHASED THIS HOME IF I HAD KNOWN THE DAMAGE TO THE HOME AND THE EXTENT OF THE TERMITE INFESTATION PROBLEM THROUGHOUT THE HOME. ORKIN'S FAULTY REPORT TOOK AWAY MY CHOICE and left me with a home which will be costly to repair and to maintain and the structural damage to the home is unknown because of the walls.

All I have asked of Orkin from the beginning was for them to honor their obligation to make right the wrong they have done. They refused to do the honorable thing. Now, I am being forced to take more drastic measures. These measures have included contacting the Better Business Bureau, The Regional Office (I have not heard from.), The BAD Better Business Bureau on line, The Termite and Pest Control Commission, and an attorney.

From the beginning, all I asked was for Orkin to honor their guarantee and to fix the damage they stated they would in their contract. I again, and again stated to Orkin in the Glendale, AZ office that I did not wish to resort to legal action.

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