How to Treat Your Bedbugs in Five Easy Steps (Or How to Avoid Driving Your Local Exterminator Insane)

 

1. Don’t Move Out.

As much as I like the thought of you spreading business for me, I don’t think you’ll much share in my monetary delight. Bedbugs aren’t fun but they are manageable with diligence, persistence, and some elbow grease on everyone’s part. Stay were you are, deal with the problem, and move out afterwards if that’s what you feel needs to be done.

2. REPORT IT TO YOUR LANDLORD. PLEASE.

I know it’s like admitting that you’ve been involved in an orgy with three donkeys and a rather talented chimpanzee but it’s better you don’t let a problem like this fester. Because, for the record…

You cannot be evicted for finding bedbugs in your home. If you find them in your home, you must report it to your landlord as soon as possible. Your landlord is then legally obligated to have an inspection within 5 days to verify an infestation and contact an exterminator within ten if the inspection proves that an infestation is occurring and begin treatments. However, by extension, you are then legally obligated to cooperate with whatever reasonable treatment plan they create, which will always involve a lot of work and us going through your things to a greater or lesser extent, depending on the solution we recommend.

For more legal information, I recommend the following websites:

http://www.mainelegislature.org/legis/statutes/14/title14sec6021­A.html

http://ptla.org/rights­tenants­unsafe­or­unfit­housing#bedbugs

3. Don’t treat it yourself.

If I had a nickel for every story that started with “I used this spray and thought it worked…” I’d not be doing the work I do, which is generally doing what you did to get yourself in this huge pile of doo but hopefully when I do my duty it digs you out of the dung­heap you’ve dunked yourself in because I’ve access to products that haven’t been as overused and diluted as the stuff you spritzed on your mattress from the local hardware shop which lead to now where, instead of being reasonably easy ­to ­find on the one bed you got from the sidewalk to save yourself a couple hundred bucks because, hey, free bed, the hell­storm has relocated itself into your walls and don’t even get me started on the nightmares it’ll make for your neighbors if you live in an apartment building. And please, please, please don’t use bug­bombs for bedbugs. A bit of my soul dies every time someone says to me, “Well, we used some bombs…”

4. Don’t bother with home remedies either.

Finding dryer sheets between the mattresses are becoming bizarrely common for me and all it means is I have to spend time taking them off and tossing them out before I can do things that actually accomplish something besides keeping away lint. Don’t trust some random internet schmoe’s magic crystal remedy just because it looks cheaper than getting someone who’s actually fixed these kinds of problems before.

5. Seriously. Do the four things above. Please. PLEASE.

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