Bed bugs – The Unwanted Roommate

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Bed bugs are a problem across the country

Bed bugs can infest clothes, linens, and furniture and their bites can cause painful rashes, swelling, and itching. When tenants find themselves living in an infested apartment, they often find they are at the mercy of their landlords.

Bed bugs are a problem across the country at apartments and hotels. The Maricopa County Environmental Services website and consumer-protection sites are littered with complaints established to warn people about infestations.

Tenants Often Blamed

Tenants are also discouraged to find that in Arizona, the law holds the tenant responsible for proving they did not bring the bedbugs with them. Renters must comply with legally binding rental addendums that require the renter notify the landlord about bed bugs within seven days of moving in to a property. The law also requires that landlords have an opportunity to fix the problem.

What Happens to the Renter

Renters run the risk of having to forfeit rent payments or having their security deposits withheld if they decide to break the lease and move out. But if a renter decides to stay they have to turn over the apartment to pest-control specialists as well as submit themselves to rigorous mediation processes akin to partial quarantines.

Regardless of what a renter decides to do many are forced to abandon furniture, clothes and bedding, costing them thousands of dollars.

What are Bed bugs?

Bed bugs are flat, red-brown parasites that feed on blood. They are about the same size as a fly, but wingless. They are nocturnal and live in small cracks in walls, furniture and mattress seams, making them hard to find. They can move easily from one location to another on furniture and clothes. Usually, people find traces of the bugs in clumps of feces or bits of shed skin. Bites can leave rows of raised lumps and are usually found on limbs and the face.

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