Bed Bugs Are All The Rage
They are being found in the finest hotels, clothing shops and vacation rentals. Unfortunately, the patrons of these places don’t seem to realize how neuvo chic they are. More unfortunate is that they are not contained to just
What can a bed bug infestation cost you?
1. Hundreds in Pest Control to eliminate the infestation.
2. Lost rent for the weeks that the rental property is off the market.
3. Thousands in replacing mattresses and box springs that were infested and now
have blood stains and fickle matter stains.
4. Thousands more in lawsuits by the renter.
Best case scenario, a bed bug infestation will cost only $2,000.00-$3,000.00. For many the cost has reached into the tens of thousands.
Why is Home & Garden Pest Solutions the Answer?
All employees are trained by the owner and licensed professional, Robert J. Russ (License numbers 1932PW, 026-27131 and CA016045-03 and 7A), who is licensed and trained in General Pest Control, Wood Destroying Organisms and Ornamental & Turf in North and South Carolina. He has also treated numerous bed bug infestations successfully in private homes, rental homes and condos throughout the county. He has attended classes and seminars with Clemson, NC State, Purdue, Texas A&M and the NC Dept. of Agriculture and is a certified sanitarian/pest control tech with the American Institute of Baking. We are a member of the National Pest Management Association., the NC Pest Management Association, and in active contact with Clemson University, NC State University and major pesticide distributors and manufacturers.
We have designed a proactive “Bed Bug Assurance Program” to counter the impending bed bug explosion. For simplicity, let me take the program from the beginning.
How the “Bed Bug Assurance Program” Works
For $10.00/bed for a 6 month coverage (Silver Package) or $20.00/bed for a full year (Gold Package), Home & Garden Pest Solutions will inspect your entire home for bedbugs, preventively treat (using the top product on the market, Phantom) the floor of each bedroom and a 3 foot radius around the headboard, mattress and box springs. Any time within the coverage time frame, should the rental company, homeowner or renter have any concerns that bed bugs are present, Home & Garden Pest Solutions will return to investigate at no additional cost. More importantly, should bed bugs be introduced to the home despite these preventive measures, Home & Garden Pest Solutions will retreat to eliminate the infestation in a reasonable, timely manner. Your proactive approach to a government documented unpreventable problem will give you a strong defense legally in that you have taken every reasonable action, much like a secured fence and “No Trespassing” sign will be legal defense should an accident happen around your pool or property.
The Platinum Package is to purchase top of the line mattress and box spring covers which must be installed by Home & Garden Pest Solutions. With the Platinum Package you receive all of the advantages of the Gold Package (Full inspection, preventive treatment, and full coverage for re-treatment if bed bugs infest your home) but in addition, if the bed bugs infest your mattress and/or box springs, Home & Garden will be fully liable to replace them….same brand and size! Most mattress covers work well for stains and dust mites but the zippers are not made in a fashion to prevent bed bugs. The prices for the bed bug covers are:
Twin and Twin XL $60.00
Full and Full XL $65.00
Twin and Twin XL $32.00
Full XL $40.00
I wanted to add a few sites for those of you unfamiliar with bed bugs.
And from Professor Schal at N.C. State http://www.digtriad.com/news/local/article.aspx?storyid=148321&catid=57
This just in from the National Pest Management Association
Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Consumer Protection Division of Consumer & Business Education
Good Night, Sleep Tight, and
Don’t Let the Bed Bugs Bite... Your Wallet
The resurgence of bed bugs has caused more than the creepy little blood suckers to come out of the woodwork. Some self-proclaimed pest control professionals and marketers are trying to take a bite out of your wallet by peddling products that claim to prevent or remedy bed bug infestations. In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – one of the federal agencies responsible for managing the bed bug problem – reports an increase in the number of individuals and companies making unrealistic claims about their abilities to control or eradicate the pests. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the nation’s consumer protection agency, urges you to be cautious when shopping for products and services related to bed bug infestations to avoid being sucked dry financially – and possibly making the problem worse.
Bed Bug Basics Bed bugs are good hitchhikers, riding into homes in and on luggage, furniture, bedding, or clothing. Once inside, the pests like to hide in small cracks and crevices – behind your bed’s headboard, in the seams and tufts of your mattress and inside the box spring, along baseboard cracks, and behind wallpaper. The presence of bed bugs has little to do with cleanliness, although clutter can provide good hiding places and make them difficult to treat.
Bed bugs do not transmit diseases, but their bites can become red, itchy welts. Bed bugs typically feed on blood every five to 10 days, but can live for a year or more without eating. They also can withstand a wide range of temperatures from nearly freezing to almost 113 °F.
The Tell Tale Signs of Bed Bugs Adult bed bugs are oval, wingless and have a rusty red color. They have flat bodies, antennae and small eyes. For photos, see www.epa.gov/bedbugs. They are visible to the naked eye, but often hide in cracks and crevices.
So when you clean, change bedding, or travel, look for other signs that they may present, like:
• dark spots about this size: • on furniture, including mattresses and boxsprings. They are bed bug feces and may bleed on fabric like a felt-tip marker.
• rusty or reddish stains on bed sheets or mattresses caused by bed bugs being crushed.
• bed bug eggs and eggshells, which are tiny (about 1mm) and white.
• live bed bugs, though there are many other bugs that may look a lot like bed bugs. It’s important to get an expert’s identification.
Treating Bed Bug Infestations Experts agree: Bed bug infestations are difficult to control, and no one treatment or technique has been found to be effective in all cases. Still, bed bugs can be controlled through a combination of techniques known as integrated pest management (IPM) – an environmentally sensitive approach that includes prevention, monitoring, and limited use of chemical pesticides. In fact, some populations of bed bugs have developed resistance to common pesticides, making some sprays ineffective.
Alternative treatments include heat and steam. Bedding, clothing, and electronic items shouldn’t ever be treated with pesticides, but can be treated with heat.
If you try to control bed bugs on your own with pesticides, choose products that are intended for that purpose. The EPA has a bed bug product search tool at http://cfpub.epa.gov/oppref/bedbug/ that can help you choose a product that meets your needs.
Before you use a pesticide, read the label. Never use a pesticide indoors that is intended for outdoor use. Using the wrong pesticide or using it incorrectly can make you, your family, and your pets sick. It also can make your home unsafe to live in. Never spray pesticides on top of mattresses, sofas, and other upholstered furniture, or in areas where there are children or pets.
In addition, steer clear of bug bombs or foggers. They can make the problem worse because bed bugs tend to cluster in small areas. When an area is bug bombed, for example, bed bugs scatter, which may expand their infestation throughout your home.
Hiring a Professional
If you’d rather hire an expert do the job:
• Make sure that you really have bed bugs and not some other pests.
• Use a professional with experience in bed bug control. Controlling bed bugs is different than controlling other pests.
• Be wary of exterminators who show up uninvited and offer a free inspection. They may use scare tactics to pressure you into authorizing immediate and costly treatments.
• Deal with a qualified and licensed pest management company. Call your state pest control regulatory agency for information about the status of pest management companies. In most states, the regulatory agency is the State Department of Agriculture. You also can check out
companies with your state Attorney General, local consumer protection agency, and Better Business Bureau or an internet search engine.
• Ask friends and neighbors to recommend pest control companies they have used successfully
for bed bugs and how satisfied they were with the service. You can do this online through a community bulletin board or neighborhood lists.
• Get bids from several companies. Ask about their training, and their approach to controlling bed bugs.
• Be wary of choosing a company based on price alone. Quality control is the most important factor.
• Before you sign a contract, get details on the extent of the infestation, the proposed work plan, and the number of visits required and anticipated to solve the problem. A reputable company will inspect your property before quoting you a price or beginning any pesticide application.
Treatment and preventing further infestation.
• Find out if the pest control company has liability insurance to cover any damage that occurs to your home or furnishings during treatment.
• If you get a written “guarantee,” look for what it covers, how long it lasts, what you must do to keep it in force, and what is required for continuing control, prevention, and management.
• Read the EPA’s Citizen’s Guide to Pest Control and Pesticide Safety, which offers more tips on how to choose a pest control company.
Preventing Bed Bug Infestations
The best way to control bed bugs is to prevent them from entering your home. Here’s how:
• Inspect secondhand furniture, beds, and couches for signs of bed bug infestation before bringing
• Enclose mattresses and box springs in covers labeled “for bed bugs.” Periodically check for rips or openings and tape these up.
• Reduce clutter in your home to reduce hiding places for bed bugs.
• Repair cracks in plaster, repair or remove any loose wallpaper, and tighten light switch covers.
• Apply caulk to seal crevices and joints in baseboards and gaps on shelves or cabinets.
• Use luggage racks to hold your suitcases when packing and unpacking rather than setting your luggage on the bed or floor.
• Check the mattress and headboard before getting into bed.
• When you get home, unpack directly into a washing machine. Wash all items showing bed bug stains, and dry on the highest setting for at least 20 minutes. The heat from the dryer kills the bugs.
• Inspect and then vacuum luggage. Empty the vacuum or seal and dispose of its bag outside of your home after each use.
For More Information
Contact the following agencies and organizations to learn how to control household pests.
• Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – www.epa.gov/bedbugs
• Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – www.cdc.gov/nceh/ehs/Topics/bedbugs.htm
• National Pesticide Information Center – http://npic.orst.edu/pest.htm
The FTC works to prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices in the marketplace and
to provide information to help consumers spot, stop and avoid them. To file a complaint or get free information on consumer issues, visit ftc.gov or call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357);
TTY: 1-866-653-4261. Watch a video, How to File a Complaint, at ftc.gov/video to learn more.
The FTC enters consumer complaints into the Consumer Sentinel Network, a secure online database
and investigative tool used by hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.