Think I found BedBugs in a sublet that ends July 31dt...what to do?(7 posts)
I've woken up the last few days with tons of bites all over my arms and legs. At first I thought that they were mosquito bites but now I'm becoming convinced they're bed bugs (I remember seeing very small red bugs on my bed while going to sleep). However, I'm living in a small room in a sublet that ends July 31st, and it seems like it takes at least a month to truly get rid of bed bugs.
What should I do? Is it worth it to go through the costly process of extermination (I know the landlord is supposed to pay for it, but he's got a history of not paying for problems with the apartment) or should I just dry my clothes on hot and get the hell out of there?
Also--will washing clothes on high and then drying them on high shrink them a lot? I am very worried about this eventuality.
A lot of items can't be washed AND dried on hot. However, drying dry items on hot for a short time will do the trick and should be safe for most items.
I am not sure I understand the other question-- are you asking wether you should tell your landlord or not? I think you must. However, it may not be your responsibility to stick around for or pay for treatment.
Whether landlords or tenants pay for treatment depends on local
laws. I am not an expert but it's possible being a subletter affects who is responsible in some areas. I would call a local tenants' organization for advice, or a
legal aid service.
Read this site's FAQs on how to recognise & inspect for BBs. It's all good stuff & knowing how to search in a methodical way will maximise your chances of finding any evidence. Knowing what you're dealing with is the most important factor in resolving your skin reaction.
Until you know for sure that you're being exposed to a biting insect, your evidence is a skin reaction & "red bugs" on your bed. The field of possible explanations is so wide I'd probably break some bit of this page if I set about listing them all. You need to narrow things down. Don't just look for BBs - look for the source of your skin reaction. Don't ignore possibilities like fleas, allergies, skin problems like urticaria - until you know what your problem is, you won't know how to resolve it.
As you'll be moving soon, the FAQs on treating your stuff (including a full explantion of the hows & whys of laundering/ drying) & how to move without moving BBs are both mines of useful info. Using the advice there may help give you peace of mind since time is so short.
This forum's great place to get additional help but reading the FAQs covers the basics much faster & in a more structured way than answering questions as they come up. With BBs, the better your understand them & the consequences of your own actions; the better your chances of getting rid of them.
If you find any bugs in your search, or any cast skins, get a photo & post in a new thread, asking for ID. There are genuine experts here who can give you a definitive ID if you can get a nice, clear pic.
Yes, Koebner is abslutely right about confirming it's bed bugs first!
How large is the apartment (one bedroom with only you in it, or 2 bedroom, 3 bedroom, etc.)? And what city are in?
The room is small, maybe 10x7. It is in a four-bedroom apartment, and none of the other occupants have discovered bugs. It is in Brooklyn.
I asked the main question about whether or not I should tell my landlord because I can move in with family if needed--I have only been living in this new apartment for ten days as of today.
With you being in Brooklyn, I would imagine there are plenty of pest control operators to choose from. I asked about the city because some people live in less populated areas that have a minimum amount of pco's.
As for letting management know, they really should know that there is an issue here. That is going to be the best chance for the issue to solved (in general). Now, concerning how they operate (you or they pay), I can't give you advice on that. It is possible there where none before you came, and that you brought them in (accidently of course, as no one would on purpose). They may make you pay, maybe only pay partial, or maybe they will pay (depends how they operate). Or they may have been there before you came. Do you know the previous occupant?
Regardless, informing the management and hiring a pco is the best chance of solving the problem. Leaving an issue unknown for a future occupant just perpetuates the problem and truely does affect everyone in society. This is something that can't just be passed off to someone else.
Please know that over the counter "treatments" such as hot shot foggers, etc., are not effective. There are many experienced people on here that can attest to this. Having a pco with treatment procedures not available to the public (as in certified to use certain chemicals, etc.) is the best chance at effectiveness. I shudder to think when people go to stores and buy the over the counter items that are not effective. This is false hope to the max.
And as for when you leave, you have to be careful. Look into vikane treatment for belongings (pods) so as not to take any out. I know NYC area pco's offer treatments along these lines.
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