Landlord insists in using fogger(8 posts)
The woman below me has bedbugs and, though I've done everything I can to avoid them, yesterday I found one in my sheets. My landlord has given me a fogger - and will turn up Monday to use the fogger himself. He is treating the apt of my neighbor with a fogger too.
I know that foggers are bad news, having read about them here and on other sites. My landlord has been aggressive towards me, shouting and saying, "I'm a professional!" when I said I wanted a professional to treat the problem (this behavior is fairly typical of my landlord, unfortunately).
Currently it seems that he will treat my neighbor's bugs with a fogger, thus dispersing them around the building and further into my apartment; he will also treat my apartment with the fogger. This makes me feel anxious and I'd like to know what my rights are in this situation. Can I hire a POC and take the money out of my monthly rent payment without my landlord's consent? Any tips on dealing with screaming, tight-fisted and intimidating landlords would also be welcome. i should add that my apartment is illegal - I discovered this after moving in - and my landlord does not want any external workmen, POCs or govt people inspecting the building because they could report it.
Contact your local non government tenant advocacy group or a lawyer to determine your rights and obligations. Your apartment's legal status should not be your problem.
Securely seal anything "difficult to treat" to prevent them becoming BB refuges as a result of the fogging. This will help you when you move out.
Thank you Cilecto!
I am not a lawyer. However, I am not sure what your rights are in terms of refusing treatment with a fogger and demanding or hiring your own PCO and getting reimbursed. You need good advice from a tenants' advice organization locally. There are good ones in many cities (NYC, Toronto, Chicago, etc.) Counties or states may also have them.
A lawyer or legal aid clinic may also help but I would try a good tenants' org. first.
Thanks, nobugsonme. I live in New York so I'll look into tenants' advice. I'm hoping it won't become a legal issue. But I wish it wasn't so complicated.
In which case, you should contact the Metropolitan Council on Housing http://metcouncilonhousing.org/
AKAIK, in NY State, a landlord (who is not a licensed PCO) may not apply pesticides himself. (If you are essentially boarding in his home, he might be able to argue that he's spraying his own place.)
While foggers are highly advised against, if your LL goes forward with it, it just might work. But if a month goes by with no improvement, then it's time to cut bait. When you pay rent, you deserve to have a home that you can rest, work and entertain in.
Keep careful records of your correspondence and your expenses, up to now and going forward. Chances are, with an "illegal" rental and likely no lease (or may an unenforeable one) or a capricious landlord who will likely retaliate against you for either "causing" a bed bug problem or just "giving him a headache", you will have to move. At that point, if the infestation is still active, unless you take some specific (and costly) measures (heat or Vikane treatment of everything you own), you will take the BB to your next home, which would then need treatment.
Everything Cilecto said about NYC and fogging. I would provide the landlord with documentation on fogging not working.
And I would definitely call Met Council. Especially given the precarious nature of your tenancy, you need good, expert advice.
I called them about a non-bed-bug related issue and got great advice.
Thanks again, Nobugsonme and Cilecto. I have started keeping a record. Your advice is very specific so that makes it helpful.
Have 4th July!
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