What are bed bugs?
Bed bugs are small reddish brown parasitic insects that feed exclusively on the blood of humans and other warm-blooded creatures. They are very small, only 5-7 mm long with a flat body. Bed bugs are a part of the Cimicidae family and are active at night time.
Bedbug bites can cause mild to moderate allergic reactions like itching and hives.
Bedbug bites don’t hurt because of a protein they inject into our skin. However, small itchy red bumps can be noticed on the skin after the bite.
Bed Bug Extermination and Treatment Cost Price Chart
Extermination estimates for cockroaches are available here and termites are available here.
Also check, if your landlord has to pay for bed bug treatment?
How They Make it to Your Home?
Bed bugs are found in all the parts of the world. They can travel in suitcases, baggage and cracks from your neighbor’s apartment. A huge majority of infestations are linked to hotel rooms. Which is why it is important to take security measures after leaving any temporary residence. Putting the clothes to the sun is one effective way of putting the risk of infestation down.
Once the property is infested, it starts multiplying in the dark and warm places. They multiply very quickly. So in weeks we can see many colonies of bed bugs everywhere in the house.
It is vital to exterminate bed bugs at an early stage. Because if you let them survive just because they aren’t a big problem yet. Soon they will be, and the costs and effort will keep on multiplying with their growth.
Signs of Bed Bug Infestation
Blood is the primary food of bed bugs, so humans are at risk of their attacks. There are times when you might have been lax in your pest control measures, and an army of bed bugs could have already invaded your house without you knowing it.
If you’re unsure about the presence of bed bugs. Then here are some common Bed Bug infestation signs that you should look out for.
1. Rash From Bed Bugs
Rashes are the most common signs of bed bugs. The rash begins with an itching sensation.
It is itchier than a mosquito bite, and the itch can usually be sensed an hour after the bite. Sometimes, the rash appears only after a few days or weeks.
A bed bug rash has a small, round and red bump that looks more swollen than a mosquito rash. Sometimes, the rash looks a lot like a bite mark in sequence. It causes long-term itching for days together. A bed bug rash also doesn’t heal as quickly as mosquito bites. Often, they remain swollen for weeks.
2. Odor of Bed Bugs
The next tell tale sign is bed bug smell. What odor do they give off?
Bed bugs release an obnoxious, musty odor. A place with heavy bed bug infestation smells of it. The smell would be easily noticeable under the mattresses & headboard. If your sofas have cracks, check if they’ve got bed bug odor. They are also sometimes have bed bug infestation.
3. Blood Stains
If you notice blood stains on clothes or bed sheets that weren’t there before you went to sleep. It’s a clear indication that the area is infested. The blood stains are created while the bed bugs are feasting on your blood.
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How Much Bed Bug Treatment Cost?
Bed Bug treatments can easily cost you $500 to $1500 depending on the vastness of the area and the method used. Most companies will conduct an inspection before giving a quote for their service.
Once you have symptoms of a bed bug infestation, you need to take immediate action because they can reproduce very quickly and are able to live up to a year without any food. Contacting licensed professionals to conduct a bed bug extermination is an effective way of getting rid of those pests.
When choosing a professional exterminator, do choose and deal with companies that have many years of experience and understands the best methods to deal with bed bugs. Ensure that the pest control company is licensed and that they provide a follow-up service. The cost of extermination varies and can be quite expensive, depending on the severity of the infestation.
Are Landlords Bound to Pay for Bed Bug Treatment Costs?
If you’re a tenant. You might have asked yourself if you’re legally liable to pay for bed bug treatment for someone else’s property.
And the short answer to this question is no. You’re not!
But even-though, you’re not supposed to pay for pest control services. It doesn’t leaves you with no responsibility.
According to law, every tenant is supposed to notify their landlords of any possible bed bug infestation. And in-case of no response from the landlord. After 5 days of making your assumptions clear about the situation.
You can take take the landlord to court. Where he/she would be liable to pay for the costs.
Please note that the laws discussed here are U.S specific. Different country laws may deal with this problem differently.
Bed Bug Extermination Methods and Their Estimated Costs
Bed Bugs removal is a complicated and time consuming process. Thus, better left to professionals. Upon initial inspection, the company would suggest you a few extermination methods and the price associated with the process . Here are 3 popular methods for bed bug eradication with their cost estimates.
1. Spray Pesticides
Using spray pesticides in an old school that most companies offer to this day. The treatment will cause a lot of work on the owner’s end (cleaning, vacuuming and washing fabrics), as with many other methods. It’s important that you remain patient as a complete removal might require multiple treatments. Spray insecticides treatment can cost anywhere from $100 to $500 per room. Companies with lower prices don’t usually include the followup cost in the quote.
2. Bed Bug Fumigation Cost
The last option for the most heavy infestations is fumigation. The success rate associated with this method is 99-100%. However, it requires you to completely abandon the area to avoid any medical complications. The process does not requires multiple application, and would also result in complete removal of any other pests infestations in the area. The average cost of fumigation treatment for bed bugs varies from $4/sq feet to $7.5/sq feet.
According to US Center Bereau Census data, an average American home built today is 2,426 square feet. With these figures in mind, bed bug fumigation can cost around $7000 to $15000 for an average American home.
3. Bed Bug Heat Treatment Cost
Heat treatment is a more advanced, effective and eco-friendly solution when it comes to bed bug eradication. Lately, there has been some proof given that bed bugs have developed the ability to survive toxic chemicals used in pesticides.
Which has forced pest control companies to use high-tech heating equipment that can heat up rooms and houses up to 120 degrees. This method promises the complete removal of bed bugs along with other bacteria that cannot survive in temperatures that high. The whole process is carried out in 6-7 hours, and does not requires multiple treatments. Bed Bug heat treatment can cost anywhere from $2000 to $4000.
Bed Bug Treatment Cost Apartment
In many cases, bed bug extermination in an apartment comprises of many different treatment methods including but not limited to chemicals/pesticides, heat treatments and fumigation.
In many cases, to increase the effectiveness of the eradication. Sniffing dogs can be used to spot and exterminate bed bugs. Considering all of these methods have been used in an average apartment of 3 bed rooms.
Your bed bug apartment treatment cost can go anywhere from $1500 to $6000.
How To Prevent Bed Bugs Infestations
Having to deal with bed bugs infestation will give you a serious heartache for many years to come. It’s not just the fear of getting bitten during the night while you are sleeping, but also because bed bugs are a pain in the butt to be exterminated once they have established themselves in your house. As the saying goes, ‘Prevention is better than cure’, so here are some tips to avoid future infestations once the treatments is completed.
Tips to Prevent Future Bed Bug Infestations
Keep it Clean
The simple rule is to keep your house clean and tidy all the time. Bed bugs, as other pests, settle themselves well in a dirty environment. While a clutter is not solely responsible for a bed bug attack, and people with clean houses can also be infested. Maintaining a good condition of your home will make the extermination process easy.
Staying in a Hotel?
Stay alert when staying in hotels. Perform a quick bedbug inspection before spending the first night in the room. Look for odor, dead bodies and eggs of bed bugs under the mattress, in the drawers and other places that seem vulnerable. If you find any signs of infestation ask the management to get you a new room that doesn’t have the problem or straight up find a new hotel.
Keep your Belongings Safe
To keep your clothes and other belongings safe, pack them in a sealed plastic bag. In addition to that, only open the bags when necessary. This will decrease the potential risk of infestation.
Spend some Money on Renovation
Inspect your house and find any cracks or holes that can possibly be the perfect resting place for bed bugs. Get those cracks repaired and holes sealed as soon as possible. If you are using wallpaper, find the area of loosen wallpaper on your wall and glue it down as this can also be a place where bed bugs can reside if left untreated.
Buy Used Furniture with Caution
Finally if you are planning to buy any used or second hand furniture, have a thorough and careful check before bringing them into your house. Bed bugs can last months without feeding on blood so there is a possibility that they have already settle down inside the furniture. Look for any cracks and crevices and see whether there’s any sign of bed bug infestation or not.