The Snake Infested House
Even though the majority of the snakes in the world are actually harmless, and many of them help to keep the rodent population down, people still have a fear of the reptile. Those who might not truly be afraid of snakes still probably don’t want to live with them, especially when they are essentially living in a den of the slithery serpents. That’s what happened to a couple in Maryland who unwittingly bought what has been dubbed the Snake House.
The Property Has a Hisssstory of Snake Problems
Homeowners Jeff and Jody Brooks filed a lawsuit against their real estate agent, Barbara Van Horn of Champion Realty, as well as Van Horn’s mother, Joan Broseker according to the court records. Broseker, you see, was the former owner of the house. The house includes more than an acre of property, and the Brooks thought they were buying a house that they would love. Little did they know that the house, which they paid $410,000 for, was infested with snakes. It wasn’t until they moved in that they discovered the problem.
There were snakes everywhere on the property, including in the walls. The experts that the family brought in to take care of the snake problem said that the snakes had their own “highways” in the walls that allowed them to get around the house. They had found signs of the snakes, including feces in the walls and the insulation. When the weather got warmer, snakes started to literally come out of the walls, some of which were up to seven feet long.
The Brooks family tried their best to deal with the problem on their own in the beginning, and they spent more than $60,000 in an effort to get rid of the snakes, but to no avail. The snakes, the experts said, were rat snakes. This didn’t mean much to the family, and they were worried that the snakes would be a danger to their two children, including an 11-month old. The rat snakes weren’t going to eat prey that’s that large though. That doesn’t take away the creepiness factor, and never knowing if you were going to run into a serpent when you are headed to the bathroom in the middle of the night was probably not a good feeling either. They were at their wit’s end, and had to move out of the house because all of the snakes’ fecal matter was causing respiratory problems.
The only thing they could do was take the real estate agent and the former owner, her mother, to court. They tried to work out a deal in mediation, but it did not prove fruitful. The case is likely to go to court in 2016. If the seller and the agent knew about the snakes, and it seems very likely that they must have, and they did not disclose this to the family, it could prove to be a big problem for them.
It’s fortunate that the rat snakes are relatively harmless, and that you can be sure the home is rat free, but it is still unsettling. It will be interesting to see where the case heads.