Extremely bad Cat odor

Looking at a possible Lonnie Deal on 3 bed 2 bath mid 90s model that is listed at around 35% of what the home would go for without the stench. When you walk up to the property, you can smell the cat odor, it’s that bad. All the carpet is gone, and it’s still terrible.

I have read that throwing killz down on EVERYTHING is the way to go. I consulted an odor specialist, and he said the best bet is an “ozone blast” for about 450 bucks. He said I don’t want to kilz everything before, because that will seal in the smell into the wood, and it will eventually find its way back out. What he’s gonna do is kill the bacteria causing the odor. It will take about 203 days of running some machine he said. If it doesn’t work, he will try again, so it’s sort of “guaranteed”.

What do you guys think? The MH is listed for 5400, and probably goes for 15-18k if fixed up and no stench. What’s my plan? Could I somehow “control” the property without buying it? That way I can try to treat the smell, and if the smell won’t go away, I am only stuck a small amount? A short term option to purchase? Maybe just offer to pay lot rent to the park for a month to work on the place?

Also, if it were easy to get rid of this smell, I have a feeling the park would have been able to. I worry they have already tried everything and just aren’t telling me. Should i trust the specialist? Should I trust the park? This park normally buys all the homes, and offers financing, but its a great park to get into IF I can get a home before they scoop them up. Obviously this one is sitting for sale, and either they failed to cure the smell, or they just are too lazy to investigate it further.

Thoughts?

I recommend first mopping the floors and surrounding areas with a water/bleach solution. Then when this dries, Kilz the floors.

Sometimes cat smells are hard to pinpoint. I’ve done everything in a mobile before and it still smells like cat. When this is the case, sometimes the cats have been under the house and urinated and sprayed there as well. In this case you have a mess. You can use lime to cover the ground under the home, but the spray could still have gotten on your bellyboard or in your insulation if the bellyboard is torn up some.

You said the home is already listed at 35% of what the home would go for. You need to get rid of the smell and you also now need to get new carpet and pad in there (or laminate). Usually when there is a house that smells this bad there is a laundry list of other things to fix in the house as well. People who live in this kind of stench are generally not great caretakers of the home. I would recommend you make a complete punch list of all your rehab expenses, including lot rent for the rehab period/holding period and then decide if your margin is wide enough.

I’m sure some others on the list have some good suggestions as well for this pretty common problem.

Hope this helps a little.

-Mike

Make sure that you use OIL BASED KILZ, otherwise the results will be as the ozone machine guy says…don’t overlook the walls. In extremely bad cases, I have cut the wallboard at 30", removed insulation and coated everything with kilz. Remember, that you are not just tryiing to get some white paint on - but rather to encapsulate the stinky stuff - lay it on thick!

Do you guys think I should even bother with the odor expert? What I don’t want to do is coat everything with Killz, and have that not work. Then I call the odor guys and they say something like, “Well you have already trapped the odor inside the wood pretty much, so our machines won’t be able to get enough air flow to kill the bacteria causing the odor.”

Also, I haven’t heard what you guys think about a buying strategy? It’s super cheap compared to what the home should go for after the rehab, and obviously I think I am in a great negotiating spot with the smell, but should I buy it? Isn’t there some way I can control the property without buying it to try out the methods listed above? Or would the park manager and owners not go for that? It is park owned.

Thanks

Brian

Forget about the cat odor. The only part about your post that caught my attention was when you said “…the park normally buys all the homes, and offers financing…”

Do not try to compete with a park who already does what you want to do. Unless you have a great relationship with them and know that they WANT you there to help them, you are going to be spinning your wheels. I’d pass and look for another park.

Kudos Jeff! keep the focus where it should be. But just for discussion sake, if you use the oil based kilz and do as instructed, you will eliminate the odor from all surfaces that were painted

[QUOTE=JeffB (MI);881624]Forget about the cat odor. The only part about your post that caught my attention was when you said “…the park normally buys all the homes, and offers financing…”

Do not try to compete with a park who already does what you want to do. Unless you have a great relationship with them and know that they WANT you there to help them, you are going to be spinning your wheels. I’d pass and look for another park.[/QUOTE]

The park does do it, but they often times do not the manager said. This one is for sale by the park. The guy was a nice guy, knew what I was doing, and had no issue with it. What bothers me is this…

If this was an easy 500 dollar fix, why on earth hasn’t the park done it themselves and then sold this thing for 15k? It just doesn’t make sense. I will investigate further, but not fall in love with it. On to the next one I guess, IF I can’t work something out with the manager.

Thanks everyone for the responses

you are right to keep questioning this. Best might be to walk away - there will be others. The pee smell is so permeating, it can be daunting if you are planning on a low budget rehab.

Cat odor

3 years ago one of the investors I work for bought a “cat house”. The state carted off the old lady that lived there to the funny farm then removed 55 live cats from a 750 sq. ft. house. We scrapped it out in full respirators then removed all the drywall 4’ up. We also removed all flooring and subfloor throughout the entire house. We then treated all framing material with Unsmoke products: http://www.prorestoreproducts.com/PRC_Search.aspx?search=ODORx
We used the 9D9 and Last Resort mixed together as specified by manufacturer and sprayed the entire house using an airless paint pump (wear a forced air respirator for this it is bad stuff) We set up big shop fans and dried the house over a weekend and proceeded with the rehab. I still have the property in our property management program and was there last month to reset kitchen sink strainer baskets (she’s a grease dumper) still no odor. Chemical costs were about $450 then you have to spray it twice so about 8 hours of your time spraying not pleasant but not the end of the world either.
Clinton

[QUOTE=Clinton;881703]3 years ago one of the investors I work for bought a “cat house”. The state carted off the old lady that lived there to the funny farm then removed 55 live cats from a 750 sq. ft. house. We scrapped it out in full respirators then removed all the drywall 4’ up. We also removed all flooring and subfloor throughout the entire house. We then treated all framing material with Unsmoke products: http://www.prorestoreproducts.com/PRC_Search.aspx?search=ODORx
We used the 9D9 and Last Resort mixed together as specified by manufacturer and sprayed the entire house using an airless paint pump (wear a forced air respirator for this it is bad stuff) We set up big shop fans and dried the house over a weekend and proceeded with the rehab. I still have the property in our property management program and was there last month to reset kitchen sink strainer baskets (she’s a grease dumper) still no odor. Chemical costs were about $450 then you have to spray it twice so about 8 hours of your time spraying not pleasant but not the end of the world either.
Clinton[/QUOTE]

Wow sounds pretty intense! Nice post and thanks for the info. I doubt I am going to do this deal. I just started doing LD’s 9/25 and already have bought 6, and have 3 sold. Not sure why I want to take on something difficult when I have been able to find 6 easy ones in less than a months time. The numbers work on the “cat house” but I think I should just stick to the basics for now. I talked to the park owner, and they aren’t willing to take a loss on the house, AKA the price is set in stone. Oh well, I think I am just going to pass, but thanks to everyone for the great info on eliminating these sorts of smells. I am sure it will pay off in the future!

New Here

Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my cousin were just preparing to do some research about this. We grabbed a book from our local library but I think I learned better from this post. I am very glad to see such wonderful information being shared freely out there.

Never dealt with a mobil home, but I’ve done alot with cat urine in houses. BTW, I’ve used so-called “specialists” with special chemicals and/or ozone machines. Let’s just say that my experience was that they were no better than anything else, but considably more expensive. I wouldn’t go that route.

We have mostly used oil based kilz. This has worked well for us. The way we use it is to wash the floor with a vinegar solution. Don’t use bleach, because it forms a poison gas. Then apply the kilz. You may have to use more than one coat. We’ve used up to 4-5 coats at times. We’ve also used various Zinzer products, which we think are better than Kilz.

Here’s the thing, if your situation is severe, you may have to do alot more than this. Because cats spray. We once bought a house that had a dozen cats in it for more than 10 years. There was a liter box in every corner. You almost couldn’t breathe in the house.

We tore out the walls up about 3 feet because the cats had sprayed. We removed quarter round. We even replaced electric sockets and plates, because the cats had sprayed these. We also worked on the duct work. We coated the floors multiple times, even sprayed under the floors from the basement. We coated bannisters, stairs, etc etc. When we were finished, there was still an odor, although it was considerably fainter.

Eventually we sold the house in that condition to a guy who didn’t seem to be disturbed by the odor. But what that taught me is that not every odor can be remedied by the above process alone.

If I had it to do over again on that particular house, I would completely remove the floor and other areas, and would have priced my purchase accordingly.

Good luck with it.

Ben