I discovered I had bed bugs the day after Christmas '09; three months after I'd renewed my lease for another year. Great gift, huh? And I'm still stuck in the place for another month. My boyfriend and I had been getting red itchy spots for a couple weeks on and off at that point, but thought it was hives or a rash from using a new detergent. Bed bugs never once popped into my mind. That morning, he was still out of town with his family and I was with mine, and we were chatting online. He said "I
think I know what's causing our red spots, but you're not going to like it." That's when he brought up the bugs and sent me some links to information and pictures of bites. I was horrified. When we both got back that night, we resolved to clean everything top to bottom. We took the sheets off the mattress, put them in a bag, and then sat down for a second. We were so pissed! As we were complaining about how much it sucked, we saw the first bug walking across the mattress. Disgusting.
I call my rental company's emergency number to report it. The woman on the other end, who spoke broken English and couldn't possibly care less about what I was saying, told me "that's not an emergency, call back Monday." I tried calling the number back, but no one would answer, so I just left a message.
First thing Monday morning, I called my rental company's number and spoke with my building manager. I explained the situation calmly, although I just wanted to strangle someone at that point. I asked to please have someone out today to exterminate, and told him that I already had made plans for someone (my boyfriend) to be in the apartment to assist the exterminator with any questions. My building manager LAUGHED at me and said "This is still Christmas vacation, no one is available. The company we use is closed right now. There's no way we can get someone out, so it'll have to wait until tomorrow or Wednesday or something." and pretty much attempted to shoo me off the phone. So, I stated my case again and said, "I don't think you understand. These things have been biting us for WEEKS. This is an emergency. If you broke your arm today, would you make and appointment to see a doctor 2 days from now, or would you go to the ER right now? I need someone in now. Can you just have another company come out?" All he could say was, "Well why didn't you call weeks ago? And no, that's the company we have a contract with and they can't come. This isn't an emergency and (laughing) if you want to liken a little bug problem to a broken arm and that makes you feel better, go ahead." So then I got really nasty with him and used some choice words. I told him I'd report him to the city immediately and have a news crew here so fast, his head would spin. He said he'd call the exterminator and SEE if MAYBE someone could manage to come off their luxurious POST-CHRISTMAS vacation to help me. I gave him 5 hours, but he never called back.
I called back and got the secretary, I asked for him and she said he was out to lunch. I waited an additional hour and called back, but still didn't get him. I suspect she put me on hold and asked if he wanted to talk to me and he declined. So, I asked to speak to the other building manager. I then explained to him, from the beginning, everything I'd explained to the other guy and then explained how the other guy was handling it and that I wasn't happy with his dismissal. The other guy, like a broken tape recorder, just repeated exactly what the first guy had said. So, I again pleaded and explained the urgency. He then started getting an attitude, so I got one too. He then said "I don't have to listen to this" and hung up the phone on me! So, I call back, get the secretary and tell her, "Look, I'm just going to keep calling, so please just put me through to him." She then says "Oh, he just pulled into the parking lot. I'll have him call you once he's actually in his office." How convenient.
So, he said he'd somehow managed to get the exterminator out, but spent 10 minutes trying to guilt trip me about it. Like I give a fuck (excuse my language) that someone had to take a maximum of 3 hours off their vacation to solve an emergency. The building manager says "We had to pay him twice as much for this, just so you know." Again, building manager, I could give a fuck. I pay you my hard-earned money every month. AND you made me jump through hoops and put down a double deposit just to rent this crap hole. Hold the tears, please. I also asked him if there were reports of other cases in the building, and he reluctantly said "well, umm...one. All the way on the other side of the building (its not THAT big of a building) on the second floor." I ask if he'll be notifying the rest of the building now so that people can be informed, on the look out, and get the exterminator in, if necessary. He said "Absolutely not. We don't want to get everyone all excited about nothing."
The exterminator came out...and 4 more times after. I still see bugs in my apartment every so often. I tried to see if I could get out of my lease, and called the Metropolitan Tenants Association, but they just gave me a law firm that were complete jerks. "You break your lease, you're liable," that's all they'd say.
So, I'm moving in a few weeks, thankfully. The exterminator said I didn't have to get rid of my furniture; that it wasn't a bad infestation. Any infestation is a bad infestation, as far as I'm concerned, and I'm terrified of bringing them with me to my new place. I'm throwing away my bed and couch, both of which were practically brand new when I moved in 2 years ago.
This shitty building thinks they're too good to rent to a recent college grad with little credit. They company is unprofessional, smug, and rude. They made me pay $1250 just to move in and now ruined my furniture, so I have to buy new stuff. Please don't move to this building, or any other owned by this company.