"I attributed it to wear and tear," he said. "I didn't think it was a big deal."
Panza thought it was a mouse that had gotten in, so he called the exterminator the next day, who inquired about the size of the droppings he had found. That's when Panza was informed that his problem was rat-related.
The first step was to get rid of the couch, and then Panza searched every room. Sure enough, droppings were found in each of them.
"After they found a nest in the garage, they’re telling me there’s
7-14 rats in the house," Panza said.
Panza's, along with his wife and two children, 5 and 7, have since relocated to the basement of his parents' house while the situation is being addressed.
The house and attic will be gutted, and all of the insulation needs to be pulled out. Then, the house will be poisoned so all of the rats are removed, and then the exterminator will come back for one last check-up. He estimated he'd be out of his home for 2-3 months.
"Once they give the house a clean bill of health, we’ll start rebuilding," he said.
As for his kids, Panza gives them bits and pieces of information, as he doesn't want them to get upset.
"I don’t want them to have to worry," Panza said. "When they come back here, all they need to care about is going to school, having a good time and not worrying about anything else."