News 4 Investigates: Residents discover brown recluse spiders in - KMOV.com

News 4 Investigates: Residents discover brown recluse spiders in home

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By Adam McDonald By Adam McDonald

CHESTERFIELD, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- A Chesterfield family was forced to flee their home after finding brown recluse spiders all over their new house. 

“The first place was our bedroom, then we found it on our dog in his fur,” Justin Cano told News 4.

His wife, Marian told News 4 Investigates "we put sticky traps by the bed and found like five of them.”

Bags of evidence are stored in the kitchen of their new home.

They bought the house on Schlottler Valley Drive last summer and called a pest control company right away.

That’s when Justin discovered the pest control company had been treating the house for years, trying to get rid of brown recluse spiders. 

Cano said  he was “disappointed in the way the disclosures read out.”

The Canos say the Seller’s Disclosure listed nothing about the problem. 

Cano took home video of around 50 egg sacs everywhere in the basement.

If the story sounds familiar it’s because it’s happened before. 

In 2012, News 4’s Chris Nagus reported on the infestation that forced the owners of a St. Charles County home to move out. 

An expert at the University of Kansas estimated the infestation at 4 to 5 thousand spiders. 

In that case, the owners sued the previous homeowners and won. It was a costly process and something the Canos say they can't afford. 

They abandoned their home one week after moving in, and that included all of their furniture, even a baby grand piano, scared that moving it might move the problem to their current home. 

Real estate attorney Michael Kohn says Seller’s Disclosures are often useless. 

“Most people who sign those don’t dig in the attic or the basement so you need to hire an engineer, a pest control person, an HVAC person, union electric, Laclede gas, all those companies to come in and take a good look at your house,” Kohn said.

Kohn encourages sellers to error on the side of disclosing more, something the Canos are doing as they try to sell the house. 

“The problem is that people don't do their homework generally when they are going to buy a house when you have the seller’s disclosure statement you can’t really rely on the seller disclosure statement” said Kohn.

Bottom line: How can you protect yourself?

Don’t settle for the standard home inspection; get a pest inspection as well.

If you can’t protect yourself with inspections, protect yourself with the right amount of home owners insurance, but double check your homeowner’s insurance policy, ask specifically about spiders.

Many policies talk about insects, but exclude spiders.

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