Dear Victim of a Jerk Landlord,
I’ve got good news and I’ve got bad news. Which do you want FIRST?
[ for those of you “tuning in” for the first time, I’m MrBedBug, Chief SpokesBug for FLfresh.com and EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator. I am a TV star on MrBedBug-TV and answer YOUR questions too: send them to: MrBedBug@FLfresh.com.]
Lets take your question apart and deal with one issue at a time.
First, your landlord may or may NOT be “a jerk”. Not all landlords are jerks. Some are inconsiderate or uncaring, or greedy, or petty and the ever popular “never available”. Only you can determine if your landlord is really a jerk.
Second, most landlords [even the most considerate landlords, yes, they really exist] are really “afraid” of BedBugs. My community creates lots and lots of issues for landlords, hotel/motel operators, movie theaters, taxis and bus companies, airlines and any other place where you tasty humans congregate. You see, we BedBugs love to snack on human blood. It’s our only real food source, so we want to snuggle-up and stay close to any humans we can find. We BedBugs are “hitch-hikers”. We cling to any fabric that smells like a human, so that we can travel from place to place, looking for a new place to establish our home too.
This is important to know, because we are entomologically different than ants, roaches and other household pest. Those guys can be easily killed, or a “barrier spray” will prevent them from re-entering a kitchen or bathroom. BedBugs are immune to most “insect sprays” sold over the counter or used by pest control “experts”. It takes a special application to kill us, and it is VERY toxic to humans too. BedBugs are generationally becoming more and more immune to the toxic chemicals that ARE approved by the EPA and the state licensing boards for use in treating Bedbug outbreaks. [This is also why I am Chief-SpokesBUG for EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator. It’s is non-toxic to humans, is kid-safe and pet-friendly in the home. It kills BedBugs, but doen’t work in the traditional ways a “poison” does]
Landlords and property owners of all types panic at the thought of BedBugs precisely because we are hitch-hikers. Think of a hotel/motel owner. [this applies to your situation, trust me, but it’s a long way around the circle with this example] If we assume a hotel room is perfectly clean when guest #1 checks in, all is “right” with the world. Mr #1 is in town for a convention. He spends time on an airplane getting to Cedar Rapids, after a day of meetings he goes to dinner and sits in a booth @ [I won’t name the restaurant], then to kill time he goes to the movies at Mega-screen-plex. If he happens to pick-up a hitch-hiking BedBug, he will return and deposit it in the hotel room, or take it home to the wife and kiddies. No matter what happens the hotel will get the blame [insert nasty review of the hotel into the storyline here] You and I know that the hotel isn’t “at fault”, but no one can prove it either way. [CSI-Cedar Rapids doesn’t exist to check Bedbug DNA] To continue the story, after Mr #1 [convention-goer heads home],Guest #2 checks in. The BedBug(s) the #1 guest brought to the room are now doing what all humans do in hotels rooms. We trash the place, make baby-BedBugs and treat it like a rental home. Guest #2 legitimately gets bitten by BedBugs in the hotel room, but whose fault is it REALLY? [Yes, I know… legally…blah,blah, blah. Work with me here. I’m trying to make a point]
The point is: BedBugs are a community and an awareness problem. [ We do have editorials about how to inspect your hotel room after check-in, on www.FLfresh.com, by the way]
Here’s how the story of the Cedar Rapids convention visitor relates to you and your “jerk” landlord. If there are BedBugs in your apartment, YOU brought them in…. [Ooops !] or your neighbors on either side or upstairs/downstairs did. [Bedbugs will travel through the walls, plumbing, electrical outlets, under the carpet, etc to move between rooms of a hotel, apartment buildings and condos.] Your “jerk” landlord has no way to know if the [really expensive] Bedbug treatment he pays for today, with keep the BedBugs away. [It won’t] The best BedBug experts will tell your “jerk” landlord, the convention center hotel owner and the movie theater management company that they can clean the BedBug infestation TODAY, but the next customer who walks in could undo all the [tedious and expensive] work.
The bottom line: Here’s what I recommend. Pretend your landlord isn’t a “jerk”. Go to him/her and say, “WE have a problem. WE can solve it, before it gets worse, for BOTH of us”. Lets face it. Moving is a pain-in-the-ass. The next new, fancy, clean apartment could have BedBugs too. State Laws differ WIDELY on what city agencies can or will require landlords to do The Iowa Legal Aid web page I found presents the situation as it exist in many, many states and cities. The landlord is responsible, but they have ways of making your life miserable. If at all possible, work WITH your landlord to clean the infestation. If you are the ONLY one complaining, over several weeks, or a month, I can guarantee your neighbors have BedBugs too. They just aren’t saying anything because they are embarrassed, or are planning to move. [Taking the BedBugs with them to the new apartment complex and starting to repeat the cycle all over again- BTW.]
We have an editorial called 13 things your Landlord should know about Bedbugs elsewhere on this site. You might want to share that with him/her/them.
We believe MOST homeowners, plus apartment/ condo homes can be effectively treated with EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator. It is non-toxic, [kid-safe and pet-friendly] as well as cost-effective solution to the problem of a Bedbug infestation. Even contract “extermination services” will require you to do 90% of the work. Cleaning a BedBug infestation is ready about de-cluttering and preparation, before the toxic chemicals are applied. If you’ll do all this work, Why not finish the job with EcoBugFREE, and save the cost of service fees. [Your “Jerk” Landlord will really like that too] Remember, the day after you use ANY method to clean a BedBug infestation, a new nymph could hatch from a unfound egg. Plan to do re-inspections every 10 days for a month. Re-treatment with EcoBugFree, the BedBug Eliminator is a cost-effective solution and offers on-going prevention at an economical cost. The most expensive “professional services” won’t guarantee you will never see BedBugs a second time. They can’t. WE can’t either. That is because a BedBug “hitch-hiked” it’s way into your home once. You [or a family member] introduced it into your home, creating the situation you need to clean now. It could happen again tomorrow, thru no “fault” of any pest control service.
Prompt response to suspicious bug-bites, an awareness of BedBugs and vigilance [especially in Cedar Rapids Iowa, and other Top 100 Cities with the most BedBug Infestations].
Learn more facts about BedBugs at www.FLfresh.com We have compiled all the latest research, plus effective “Tips and Tricks” on how to avoid a Bedbug infestation. There are many options you can use to clean a BedBug infestation in your home or apartment/condo and workplace. Separate FACT from FOLK-LORE and Myth at www.FLfresh.com We are the national distributor of EcoBugFREE, the BedBug Eliminator. It is a non-toxic [kid-safe and pet-friendly] way to KILL BEDBUGS. The more you know about how BedBugs live, hide, feed, breed and travel, the better you can protect yourself from BedBugs.