Just moved to a furnished apartment...turns out it's infested!!!(8 posts)
So I just moved (a week ago) to a furnished place. We thought well great we don't have to buy furniture since my only possessions consisted of a bed and clothes and we didn't have much money to furnish a place anyway.
Well today I was sitting on the couch and a bed bug crawled across the arm of it. In the middle of the afternoon! I put it in a ziploc bag and took it to security and they confirmed that yes it was a bed bug and contacted the condo management. My roommate has been sleeping on a mattress that was left here as part of the "furnished" it is also completely infested when we lifted the covers to check.
I brought my own bed and so far tore everything apart in my room and haven't found anything, nor have I received any bites (my roommate is not so lucky). I'm severely allergic to any and all bug bites, so if I was bit I would probably know it. The site would swell to the size of a softball, and if I were bit multiple times I would probably be in the hospital because my body reacts very weirdly to any and all bug bites that I have ever gotten from other various bugs over the course of my life. I have never dealt with bed bugs though so can't say for certain but I assume if my body reacts this badly to other bites it would be the same regardless since I have never had a bug bite that I haven't severely reacted to.
We are assuming the reason the owner left us a ton of furniture was because they knew it was infested and didn't want to pay to have it removed. The room I am in was the only completely unfurnished room in the house and I brought all my own things and seem to not have anything creepy crawly in here (yet).
I talked to the owner of the condo unit we are living in and were basically blamed for bringing them with us from the tone and attitude I got on the phone. I'm in an area where it is the landlords responsibility to foot any and all costs for this kind of stuff. She "says" she will deal with it tomorrow (which she better be because I am freaking out and afraid to sleep or move around the condo too much in case I bring bed bugs into my room and all my stuff that is currently bed bug free).
I have a ton of clothing that I know for fact that cannot be washed or dried on hot settings without being completely ruined. What do I do about these things if they tell us to wash and seal clothing?? I brought so many of my good clothing with me because I am starting a new job and wanted to have presentable things to wear and now I fear that I am going to have to toss it all because I can't wash it/dry it hot enough to kill everything.
Also, what do I do about suitcases?? I used my suitcase to move some of my clothing here and it's currently sitting in the closet waiting for my parents to visit to take it back home with them. I don't want to give them bed bugs, so how do I clean it or treat it to make sure nothing accidentally hitches a ride?? What about things like electronics and purses which also can't be washed or thrown in the dryer on hot? Will things like jewellery be okay to wear and not wash or do anything to?
I have been reading about those container things to put things in that cannot be washed, but they are way out of our budget since both of us are students barely making rent payments at the moment. I just feel so down and completely ready to move back home with parents. This is my first actual place and it's turning into a nightmare and I have only been here a week so far with a whole entire year lease left to go.
The furniture was left over from the previous tenants? If you have only been there a week, PCO might be able to find signs to indicate how long the infestation has been there. Though, if it is the landlords responsiblity, it really won't matter.
Many types of clothing will survive the dryer if they are already dry before they go in. And, dry cleaning works as well.
Can you contact the previous tenant? If you can get information from them that the bedbug infestation existed before you moved in, and that they had already told the landlord, then you might be able to break your lease.
Most all clothing can go into a dry on high heat for 20-30 minutes without issue. You don't have to wash clothing first, nor do I recommend it.
While your budget may be an issue, make one smart purshase - buy a packtite. Use the links on the site to go to usbedbugs.com. This can also be used for fine washables as well as pocketbooks and suitcases. I don't recommend a dry cleaner - they will not always kill bugs and you will also need to inform them about bringing in possible infested clothing. They may refuse to take them.
Jump on the land lord- a pro will size up the infestation and know for sure if this had been there longer then a week. I don't need to see the place and already know that.
Good luck! Forgive any typo's -- on a cell that has a mind of its own.
I agree a PackTite would be a very good idea.
KQ - Why doesn't dry cleaning work?
I did tell my dry-cleaning before taking in my stuff (carefully bagged) and they were okay with it. I didn't send any duvets etc. just clothing. Is it because you can't be sure about the conditions at the dry-cleaners or are there questions about the processes they use?
Re: dry cleaning:
Traditional dry cleaning methods using perc are known to kill bed bugs.
Some dry cleaners don't use perc, but instead use "Green" methods. I don't think anyone has tested those, whatever they are, and verified they kill all life stages.
Also, the bug problem is do they know how to handle items exposed to bed bugs. And even if they do, does every customer disclose their bed bug problems?
If you moved into an apartment and there was a pre-existing bed bug infestation then it is likely that someone other than YOU is going to be responsible for it.
Hope this helps ! paul b.
And even if they do, does every customer disclose their bed bug problems?
Obviously they don't and that's unfortunate for the dry cleaner and the patrons. In this case why the secrecy. The worst case scenario is you are forced to find another dry cleaner that is likely more informed about materials that may have live bbs or worse, eggs in someone's "carefully bagged" drop off.
Sorry, but this brand of pride or paranoia ticks me off.
I apologize for coming down hard. BBs. are very stressful and I understand that this is all new to you and due to your past reactions to insect bites your fear is heightened.
Killer Queen gave you excellent advice about dealing with your clothes--dryer, no wash cycle/consider buying a packtite. A new packtite will run about $300. and can be purchased on this site.
Most of all, read the FAQs. This website and community is the greatest source of knowledge and support that I know of.
You must log in to post.