House Study Bill – Tenants Could End Up Paying For Bed Bug Extermination
Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Let's say you find bed bugs in your apartment or the home you're renting. As the law stands right now, the landlord has to foot the bill to clean out not only that apartment but the entire building.

But, that could soon change.

Meynard Porter is the President of the Siouxland Rental Association. With that title, he works with many landlords in the area and in turn: bed bugs.

And he says, when it comes to these guys, the worst is yet to come.

"I don't think they're as big a problem now as they're going to be," said Porter.

So he's supporting a bill in the IA House that would require renters to report a bed bug infestation within a certain amount of time or be forced to pay the full extermination costs.

"People are responsible for their actions and their behaviors. If you bring bed bugs, we're going to expect that you number one cooperate with us, and two, you're going to foot the bill to get rid of these things," said Porter.

The biggest problem is the sheer nature of the bed bugs. You see, they're hitchhiker insects, which means, they spread and quickly.

Siouxland District Health's Michelle Clausen Rosendahl said, "It can be very hard to determine who should be responsible for taking care of them and usually we encourage both parties to carry some responsibility."

No vote has been made at this time on the bill.

And remember, a bed bug infestation spreads quickly, so report them to your local health department as soon as you see them.