We live in a brownstone, with 3 units, and a bar on the ground floor.
I woke up with bites mid September 2010. Signs of bed bugs in the apartment such as bug feces on the floor, dead tiny bed bugs on the floor, and blood spots on our sheets and pillows. Had the dead bugs confirmed as bed bugs by the exterminator down the street. I cannot locate the bug's nest.
Spoke to the landlord, who at first told us that it was our problem. Spoke to them again the next day and they said they would call a
n exterminator in a few days time. No word from landlord or exterminator for 1 1/2 weeks. Landlord then called to say that he was coming over to spray the apartment himself in an hour. I called 311 to find out my legal rights. 311 said that legally, the landlord must hire a licensed extermintor in a reasonable amount of time. I told this to the landlord, who tried to tell me that he could do the same thing that an exterminator would. I told him my rights to have a licensed exterminator do the work. He finally agreed.
I then Spoke with the upstairs tennant (sublet), asking her if she had a bed bug issue. She told me that she had been waking up with bites, and was hoping that it wasn't bed bugs. She was in the process of moving out in a week. She hired a licensed bed bug dog person, because she didn't have time to wait for the landlords to do something about it, and she didn't want to transfer the bugs to her new home. The dog confirmed bugs in one of the mattresses, and in their clothes. She moved out, and the landlord went upstairs and sprayed that apt. themselves. They brought me up to show me "we didn't see any bed bugs". I told them that they hide, and come out at night. Not seeing the bugs while in an apt. for 2 hours during daylight does not mean that there are no bugs there. I told them that I would like to hire the dog, to find out exactly where the bugs were in my apt... to better help get rid of them. They said no. I said I would pay half. They said "let me think about it". Three weeks have passed. We made numerous unanswered phone calls. They finally called and said no to the dog. They told me (today 10/28/10) to call and schedule the exterminator next door myself, to come when I'm ready. I had called this exterminator (and many others) for information when I first realized the problem. This exterminator sprays, nothing else. The total cost is about $300, compared to most bed bug exterminators who do a much more thorough job (due to the difficulty of getting rid of them) and cost around $1500- 3000.
From what I know, the landlords have not notified the downstairs tennant of this issue in the building, and have no plans to have the other units in the building exterminated. The upstairs (previously sublet, and bed bug confirmed) apt. will be for rent as of November 1st.
We clean our apt. constantly, have all of our clothes in plastic bags, cannot have people over, and get bitten every night.
I hope that the budget extermination works, but I have my doubts.