One of the challenging aspects of navigating life as a renter in New York is affordable housing. For many renters in the city, trying to thrive while juggling work, grad school, or even a side hustle, can be difficult.  In the city that never sleeps, it is easy to get caught up in the hustle & bustle of things and forget about the nagging issues you’re facing every day.

So here’s the story

It was a pleasant surprise finding a reasonably priced apartment in Harlem. It’s a four-floor walk up, but I’m young so, I can handle it. Wooden floors, new bathroom and a decent kitchen, I started to wonder if this was too good to be true.

About four months in my dream apartment bliss came crashing to a screeching halt.  Bedbugs were all over my mattress! Somehow, I did not get any bites. As a result, I thought I was in the clear.  However, I was very mistaken.  Like most millennials, I immediately searched the gram for #NYC Bedbug and was hit with thousands of results. Not always the most pragmatic problem solver, I texted my landlord. After waiting an hour, I called, and still, no response. Going back to sleep wasn’t an option, so I went back online for more guidance.


is my landlord responsible for bed bugs

Here’s how to get rid of bedbugs in NYC:

  1. Review your lease agreement and or renter’s rights to view qualification requirements for assistance. According to NYC tenants rights, Its the landlord’s obligation to remove bed bugs.
  2. Depending on the furniture you might be able to preserve it with vacuuming & steaming. However, the vacuum bags must be secure, and the steamer must emit 180 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. On the other hand, if the furniture must be discarded it’s imperative that it is wrapped in plastic wrap.
  4. As a reminder, your landlord has 30 days to remove the bed bug infestation. In some cases, they may also have to inspect and clean apartments above and underneath you.
  5. In addition, if not done so previously have maintenance seal any open cracks or crevices, so you do not have a repeat visit.

I also discovered that preventative measures could be taken before moving.  The Bedbug registry website is an excellent resource that can verify bedbug infestation by hotel name and/or address.  Furthermore, the site has excellent information on tenants rights and prevention tips. If you have a similar story to share, send your submission here

Interested in learning more about important state-by-state information in regards to landlord-tenant laws? Click below to view more information from ” Fit Small Business.”

Landlord Tenant Law: Overview with State by State Interactive Map

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