Praying it's not going to happen...(6 posts)
I recently moved within my (fairly large) building, to an apartment that has just been renovated. The owners of the building had posted signs over the last few months saying "someone" had brought bedbugs into the building and that they'd never had them before. I wasn't too worried, until a few people at my work got them, and we all started talking about how awful it would be to get them, and now I'm in full-blown mania mode (i.e., dreaming about them, certain I'm going to get them). To make matters worse, I talked to the landlady today and she said they have been found on all the floors of my building and, most recently, two doors down from my new place.
So, now what do I do? Since my place is small (a studio), I have been sleeping on a sofa bed. I am about to go out tomorrow and buy a new (real) bed that I can encase in one of those fancy encasements, because I don't see how I can encase this sofa bed (it is not a futon). I just read here that you shouldn't switch where you sleep, but I don't think I have them (yet). What are the other steps I should take? How do I seal the apartment? My landlady recommended calling our exterminator and having him do a preliminary spray, but they said the next time they will be here is August 14. Will that be too late?
Also, today I found a flier in my door that said the building has been fighting bedbugs for two years and that obviously their PCO is not working, as new apts. keep getting infested, and that we should call the landlady to complain. Since the building is pretty large, and in a gentrifying neighborhood, I think it'll be hard to get everyone organized to tent the building, or whatever it takes to kill them for good.
It would be great if someone could give me some advice. I feel so depressed about the whole thing, this looming certainty that it's going to happen. It makes me want to leave the city. Thanks.
Sorry, this is a total quickie, meaning haven't digested all your questions yet: Don't buy a new bed, encasements or not. You're in a studio. Sleep on your existing couch until you know what's going on. If you have to fight bedbugs, the new bed may just be a waste of money for now and another thing to have to worry about decontaminating. My opinion? If you are worrying about bedbugs, don't acquire new furniture.
FOF is right - there is no need to pre-emptively throw out furniture
But you can prepare/protect yourself by caulking and sealing your baseboards and around switchplates and any cracks and crevices around door frames and window sills
I would also start to de-clutter as much as possible and seal up any books or papaer you don't need in large ziploc bags and wash & dry all blankets, towels and bedding and off season clothes that you do not need in a hot dryer and then seal in plastic
my theory is that if you prepare in advance then if they do hit you - it will make it much easier to contol and get rid of them
the only thing you can do is wash, dry, seal & de-clutter as much as possible
you may also want to get some food grade DE and LIGHTLY spray about baseboards and by the doors and under furniture and in closets as a precaution
good luck and please don't worry about something you may not have control over
Thanks for the advice, guys; I definitely won't buy a bed yet. Now I have discovered that the person next door to me has them. I had the building's PCO in today to pre-emptively spray (he checked around and said I don't have BBs) and I am going to caulk. However, what I really want to do is move before they infest my place and my stuff. I have booked a truck for tomorrow and am planning on taking my valuables (i.e. sofa bed, armchair, books, winter clothes) to Massachusetts to a storage space; I was thinking of moving away from the city anyway. I'm planning on spending the next month in my place on an encased Aerobed with minimum stuff around. What I'm wondering is, even though the PCO says I don't have bugs, should I be worried about taking my stuff to a storage space and potentially having to let it sit for 18 months if it ends up being infested somehow? Advice would be appreciated...
I agree, no new furniture.
Your apartment may have not had bed bugs because it was vacant so they had no reason to enter. Now that you are there and much of your building has the problem then they probably will come looking for you. Learn how to inspect and look for signs.
Also, just curious, what city are you in?
CAULK IMMEDIATELY all the cracks and crevices from floor to ceiling. i also put DE at the entryway to my from door. sill eh? but i felt better. you need to isolate your apartment, so to speak. kind of like isolating your bed. i gree - no new furniture yet. ispect papers, sofa bed mattress, seams on the sofa, underneath the sofa, chairs, screws, electronics. be prepared with a competant PCO. do your reserach ahead of time so you will waste no time if you should get them.
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