NJ Bill Would Make Landlords Responsible for Bed Bug Extermination

A bill that would make landlords responsible for bed bug extermination has passed committee and is headed to the New Jersey Assembly. Introduced by Assembly Democrats L. Grace Spencer, Shavonda Sumter and Cleopatra Tucker, the bill clearly spells out the responsibilities of both landlords and tenants when bed bugs infest multifamily buildings.

The legislation was sparked by complaints from tenants whose landlords charged them for bed bug extermination when a series of severe bed bug infestations struck multiple Jersey City apartment complexes in 2011. At the time, tenant Chi Chi Phillips told ABC Eyewitness News, “I went in the hallway; I just scooped them up; they’re falling from the ceiling.”

Recognizing that a communal effort is required to exterminate bed bugs in multifamily housing, the bill specifies the responsibilities of landlords, tenants and the public health department in preventing and exterminating these noxious pests. Property owners would not only be responsible for bed bug extermination; they would also be required to distribute to tenants bed bug prevention pamphlets prepared by the Department of Health and Senior Services.

For their part, tenants would be required to report bed bug presence to their landlords, permit bed bug inspections of their apartments and could be held responsible for certain costs related to bed bug extermination.

For professional commercial bed bug extermination and prevention services in New Jersey and New York City, call the experienced bed bug extermination experts at Stern.

Are Bed Bugs Still a Serious Problem in NY and NJ?

Perhaps you’re living in New York or New Jersey, and you’ve heard stories from other people about their experience with bed bugs. You might be wondering if bed bugs are still a problem in our part of the country.

Unfortunately, they are, and anyone is at risk for an infestation. The probability of getting bed bugs increases however, based on certain behaviors.

Frequent Hotel Visits

If you like to travel frequently, you’re at a greater risk for taking a few bed bugs home with you. To lessen your risk, ask if the hotel has ever had a bed bug problem, and avoid putting your suitcase directly on the bed.

Frequent Overnight Guests

Not everyone has a reaction to bed bug bites, so if you have an overnight guest who has bed bugs at home, but no bites, they can easily spread bed bugs to your house. Be cautious about anyone you allow to stay overnight in your home.

Neighbors With A Bed Bug Problem

Because many people attempt to treat a bed bug infestation themselves, bed bugs can easily spread to your home if a neighbor has them. For example, a bed bug bomb causes them to scatter, which can make the situation worse for you.

Don’t let bed bugs steal your sleep. If you suspect an infestation, contact a NY/NJ pest control specialist today.

Atlantic City Bed Bug Problem Going to the Dogs!

The Atlantic City council has called in the dogs to track down bed bugs at an Atlantic City, New Jersey senor housing complex. Plagued by an ongoing bed bug infestation that wasn’t being addressed by housing management, fed up residents and their family members finally took their complaints to the city council and demanded action.

Since then code enforcement officers have been inspecting the housing complex and were recently accompanied by a bed bug dog and its handler, according to Press of Atlantic City. Trained to sniff out bed bugs in the same way they are trained to detect drugs and explosives, bed bug dogs can thoroughly investigate a room in less time than a human technician who must rely on visual clues. This ability has made bed bug dogs a popular choice for inspecting hotels, resorts, apartment complexes and other multi-family buildings.

With a nose up to 100 times more sensitive than a human’s, a properly trained dog can detect bed bugs and their eggs hidden in furniture, under floorboards, inside clothing-jammed closets and other out-of-the-way places hidden from the view of human inspectors. Bed bug dogs can typically sniff out bed bugs within a three-foot radius and can often zero in on these blood-sucking pests more precisely.

Of course, locating bed bugs is just the first step. Inspections should be closely followed by bed bug extermination services provided by an experienced NYC/NJ bed bug expert.

Beware of Bed Bugs in Rental Furniture

A Houston woman was appalled when she discovered that the couch she was renting came with an unexpected surprise: bed bugs. After getting a few unexplained insect bites, the woman inspected her new couch and found it infested with bed bugs and clusters of their eggs.

“It’s just been hell. It’s disgusting,” Kalynn Trammell told My Fox Houston. She has endured dozens of bed bug bites that have produced raised bumps and scars that cover her back and legs. “Every bite has resulted in a scar; I now have to look at this for the rest of my life. I look like I’ve been doing drugs,” she said.

While only 50% of people react to bed bug bites, many people are allergic to the intensely itchy bites of these small blood-feeding insects. Bed bug bites typically produce large, itchy welts and hives that look like mosquito bites on steroids. Scratching can cause bites to become infected and scar.

Used and rental furniture are frequent sources of bed bug infestations. People are also warned not to bring home furniture picked up off the street. The Houston rental center says their furniture is “sanitized” before being rented or sold; but furniture must be subjected to high heat for the proper length of time to kill bed bugs. Rental centers might profit from purchasing the ZappBug Room which is large enough to heat treat a couch or other large piece of furniture. Check it out on our online store.

Healthcare Worker Awarded Partial Judgment for Bed Bug Exposure

The outcome of a Nebraska lawsuit may be the beginning of a legal trend that could have a serious financial impact on service businesses that regularly send their employees into clients’ homes. A Nebraska small claims court has awarded a healthcare aide exposed to bed bugs while on the job a partial judgment against her employer, a home healthcare provider.

Jamie Leinart told WOWT News she was exposed to bed bugs while caring for an elderly patient in the patient’s home. Bed bugs are excellent hitchhikers and some of the tiny insects apparently went home with her hidden in her supplies or clothing. Leinart’s home became infested with bed bugs and she suffered numerous bed bug bites.

The aide sued her former employer for $3,000 which included medical bills and $1,200 to have her home exterminated. She claimed her employer was aware that bed bugs might be present at the client’s home but did not warn her, a claim Encompass Senior Solutions denied. While the judge noted that health risks go with the job, he awarded Leinart lost wages and half of her exterminator costs for a total of $1,200.

Bottom line: Bed bugs could be a new legal liability for businesses whose employees make house calls. Service businesses may want to invest in bed bug monitors or a portable ZapBugg bed bug-killing heat chamber to help protect employees from bed bugs and themselves from lawsuits!