In part 3, the final post in our Escaping Bed Bugs series, we will explore what to do if you have bed bugs in a multi-housing unit situation. If one unit has bed bugs, the other unit will have, or start to have activity eventually. It’s important that the proper steps are taken to ensure that all eggs and bugs are killed; and it’s not a quick or easy process. If one or more of your shared housing neighbors don’t take those proper steps, it can quickly turn into chasing the bugs around unit-to-unit, as it gets worse and worse.
So, what do you do? This isn’t usually a situation where home remedies to get rid of bed bugs are effective. There are several options you have when dealing with bed bugs in a shared living situation, and ultimately its best to do what’s best for your and your household.
Research Your State’s Rental Laws
Most states have laws in place for renters to protect them from unsafe living environments. Check with your state’s laws to find out if landlords are required to provide treatments or at least offset some of the bed bug exterminator cost. It’s important to ask questions like, “What happens if they provide treatments, and they don’t work?” “What are the potential implications for breaking a lease due to pest related issues?”, and “What will your landlord do if other tenants do not do the preparation they need to eradicate the pests?”. Most landlords will need to hire a professional exterminator to treat the entire building. However, many landlords try to get away with treating a single unit, and the bugs just move into another unit.
Talking to Neighbors & Offering Assistance with Prep Work
If you’re living in a place where not all the neighbors are doing their part to remedy the issue, if it’s possible, you could talk to the neighbors. It could be that they don’t have time, or physical capabilities to do the preparation needed for bed bug removal – drying linens, vacuuming floors, cleaning out dressers/closets, etc. If you cannot move out of your apartment, and your neighbors won’t do their part to get rid of the issue, then consider offering some help to the neighbors. Obviously in larger buildings this isn’t possible, so it’s important to always communicate with the neighbors and the landlord, and make sure everyone is on the same page.
When all else fails, moving out may be the best option if the other tenants in the shared space aren’t willing to do the necessary prep work to fully exterminate from the entire building. When moving out, it’s extremely easy to bring bed bugs into a new home. The rule of thumb is the bugs and eggs need to be dried in high heat for at least 30 minutes, or frozen for at least 4 days to be fully exterminated (if not treated using pesticide products). It’s not easy to pack everything you own into a freezer for 4 days, so if you live in freezing temperatures and need to move in the winter, you can put all, non-linen items into storage bins and freeze under a tarp for 5 days. Otherwise, anything that cannot be dried or frozen, needs to be thoroughly inspected for bugs or eggs, or discarded.
Bed Bug Removal is Best Left with The Experts
Bed bug infestations (especially in multi-housing units) can become overwhelming – very quickly. It’s best to let a professional do an inspection, and suggest the most effective bed bug treatment. Make sure you keep in contact with your landlord and neighbors, and stay informed as a renter.
Here at Spidexx, our informative and thorough approach, makes us a top choice for a bed bug exterminator in Omaha and Des Moines! Our customer service team is available 9AM-5PM Monday-Friday to answer any questions, and walk you through the treatment process.