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How Did I Get Bed Bugs?

Copyright 2013 Shawn Cole. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.).

Cole Home Maintenance is an exterminator Located in Palatine and serving towns in
Lake County, Cook County, Mc Henry County, Du Page County, Kane County
$60.00 to spray up to a 2 bedroom apt for bed bugs

The most common question being asked is "How did I get bed bugs? "  

 The simple answer is that you sat on a piece of furniture where a person who had bed bugs in their home had sat just before you sat down.   The bed bug traveled on the  previous person's clothing and then crawled off their clothing and  onto the furniture.  Then you sat on that furniture and  the bed bug crawled onto your clothing and you brought it home with you.  This same thing happens when you invite someone to your home or apartment.  They have bed bugs at their home and on their clothing.  They come to your home, sit on your furniture, the bed bug crawls off their clothing and onto your furniture.  Now you have the bed bug.

This method of traveling means that you can have bed bugs from many sources.  The more people who sit on the furniture that you are going to sit on, the better the chance that one of them had bed bugs that crawled off them onto the furniture.  Restaurants, movie theaters, waiting rooms, hotel rooms are  places where many people sit on the furniture every day.  The more people, the more chance that one of them had bed bugs on their clothing.

Children play at their friend's home.  Children  go to school with a large amount of other children.  The same basic process happens again.  As the children arrive at day care, nurseries, schools and events, they may have bed bugs in their home.  If they have these tiny pests on their clothing, they sit on the floors and furniture at the schools.  The bed bugs crawl off their clothing and onto the furniture and floor.  Then they crawl onto another student who brings them home.   The same process happens again as described above.

Bed Bugs Hide in Luggage

As people started traveling more from one country to another, one sate to another, they encountered bed bugs and brought them to the new location in their suitcases.  This means that one hotel after another started to become infested.  The travelers then took their luggage home with the bed bugs hiding in their luggage.  One hotel location after another started to experience bed bugs, the travelers were literally moving the bed bugs from one location to another.  When they get home, the bed bugs traveled hidden in their luggage and now their home has the bed bugs.

Living in Apartments and Large Buildings

Living in buildings that have many residents increases your chances of becoming infested with bed bugs.  Walls mean nothing to these tiny pests.  They simply find a crack or opening in the baseboards, walls or floors and move into the walls of the building.  They can travel on common water pipes, electrical lines and heating distribution pipes.  Once inside the  walls of the building, they will travel through the walls  of the building in search of food.  Unfortunately you and your  pets are their source of food.  Bed bugs only drink blood.  They are not interested in the morning cereal that your  child spilled on the floor or the crackers you ate in bed while watching television.  They do not care if you are  a messy housekeeper or keep the home spotless.  All they care about is finding a new source of blood for their next meal.

Bed Bugs Move From One Apartment to the Next Apartment

If one person brings  bugs into their apartment, the chances are increased that the surrounding apartment tenants  will start  experiencing bed bug bite marks.    As explained above, the bed bugs will travel through the walls to the adjacent  apartments.  They are constantly looking for a new source of food.  The longer an infestation goes on, the more the bed  bugs travel through the walls to the adjacent apartments.

Bed Bug Bombs Spread Bed Bugs to Other Apartments

Some tenants will try to treat the bed bug problem themselves by purchasing "bug bombs"  -- also known as "total release foggers".    Reference the article on this web site titled "Bed Bug Bombs are Dangerous".  Tenants and owners think that this "fog" will seep into all the cracks and crevices where the bed bugs hide.  WRONG!     University studies have proven that the only thing that these "foggers" or "bed bug bombs" do is spread the bed bugs into the walls and cracks and crevices into the walls of the building and into the adjacent apartments. 

A simple small infestation in one  apartment unit can now drive the bed bugs into the entire building when the tenant activates these "bug bombs". 

Attached Apartment Buildings and Town Houses Have a Special Problem

Many of the apartment buildings and town houses in the Chicago area are attached by a common wall.  In the case of apartment buildings, a  6-unit apartment building is owned by one person  and  attached  through common wall to another 6-unit apartment building that is owned by a different owner.  The same thing happens with townhouses.  There may be four or more individually owned units that have different owners for each townhouse that is attached   by common walls.

If one building owner hires an exterminator and eradicates the bed bugs in his building, the owner in the attached building may not do anything and simply allows his tenants to fend for themselves.  The result is that the bed bugs in the infested building will migrated into the adjacent owner's building and re-infest his building.  Thus we have a situation where the owner of one building is responsible and trying to keep his building clean and free of pests (including cockroaches) and the adjacent building owner couldn't  care less.

Now tenants are not only being infested by adjacent apartment tenants but also from tenants in an attached building that may have another six tenants over which  the  responsible owner has no control. 

Tenants Move to a Different Apartment to Eliminate Bed Bugs

Some tenants think that they will simply move to another apartment in a different building  and get away from the bed bugs.  WRONG!  These tenants simply bring the bed bugs with them to the new apartment building.  Remember we have stated that bed bugs like to hide in clothing and furniture.  The tenants pack up their bed bugs infested property and move it into a clean, non-infested apartment.  Now they find they still have bed bugs.  The bed bugs start to spread to the adjacent apartments and the new apartment building starts to become infested.  Some tenants claim they never had bed bugs and only found them in the new apartment.     This is a situation that the owner and tenant argue about and each places the blame on the other.

The Fight Between Owners and Tenants

There is a fight going on throughout the United States.  Owners are angry  at their tenants for "bring bed bugs into their apartment building".  The tenants are claiming that it is not their fault.  They did not have bed bugs before they moved into the apartment and it is the owner's responsibility to eliminate the bed bugs.    Other tenants claim they have bed bugs but it is not their fault.  They claim another tenant brought them into the building and infested their apartment. 

It is impossible to track down the source of the bed bugs.  Did the tenant bring the bed bugs with them when they moved?  Or did the building have bed bugs in the other apartments and those bed bugs traveled through the walls into the new tenant's apartment?  Did the previous tenant move to get away from the bed bugs and the new tenants moved into that apartment where the bed bugs are still living?

Did one of the tenants invite someone into their apartment who had bed bugs in their apartment and brought bed bugs with them when the visited?   Or did the tenant visit someone who had bed bugs in their apartment and sat on their furniture and brought the bed bugs back to their apartment?

It is impossible to know how the apartments became infested.  As a result, many tenants are angry with the owner of the building and the owner is angry with his tenants.  Each blame the other for the bed bug infestation.    As a result, the bed bug infestations are increasing throughout the United States.

No Guarantee that Tenants Will Not Be Re-infested

As more buildings are infested with bed bugs, the chances are greater that owners and tenants will sit in a chair or couch in another apartment or movie theater, restaurant, office building, waiting room etc., that has a bed bug on the furniture.  Five years ago the Chicago land area was Number 5 in the nation for bed bugs.  According to reports, Chicagoland is now number 1  for bed bug infestations in the country.

A responsible owner could hire an exterminator and eliminate all the bed bugs in his building and the tenant could find himself re-infested from any of the sources listed above.  Now the problem starts again.

Some exterminators are Charging Huge Prices to Eradicate Bed Bugs

There are exterminators  who charge as much as they think the victim of bed bugs will pay to stop being eaten alive.  We have heard some exterminators are  charging anywhere from $500 to $1,000 per apartment  to eliminate bed bugs.  This is outrageous.  A typical  owner of a 6-unit apartment could pay from $3,000 to $6,000 to eradicate the unit apartments in his building.  That is a huge amount of money.  The question becomes: 

 What happens when the bed bugs are re-infesting the building  again and again and again ?  As stated above there are so many ways for this to happen.  Very few owners of a 6-unit building can afford to pay that mount of money again.

Cole Home Maintenance Charges  $60  to Spray

Cole Home Maintenance is a licensed exterminator in Illinois.  The company policy is that pest control should NOT require a building owner to take out  mortgage to pay for pest control.  We can provide owners of large buildings with postings to put on their tenant's doors to inform them when their apartment will be sprayed.  These instructions will be both Spanish and English to  help facilitate  the procedure. We will also be happy to make the individual appointments with your tenants to schedule appointments that are convenient to your tenants.