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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Corporate Law Discussions

As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby akule76 » Wed Dec 14, 2011 2:46 pm

A few weeks ago, my tenant calls me and says that they just got bed bugs a couple days prior to the call. They've been living there for about 3 months by this time. He asked for me to call an exterminator. I asked him if the problem was there from the beginning or if it's new. He said it just started over the weekend and that everything was fine at first.

I told him that since he got the house clean and bed bug free, it's his responsibility to take care of the critters.

Today, a different tenant from the same house called and said he wants me to clean it up. This one is saying that it was there from day 1 which it's impossible because I lived in that house for over 6 years prior to them moving in and there were NO bed bugs.

I told him that the other guy said that the problem only started recently but he's insisting differently and that I should take care of it.

By law, am I required to pay for the exterminator or is this their responsibility? I really don't want to pay because these people are filthy and will most likely contract them again.

This is a town house in a development in NJ.

Thanks
akule76
 
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby adusa37 » Wed Dec 14, 2011 2:52 pm

They have been renting your property for 3 months. There's no way the bed bugs decided to invade the place in such a short time so YOU should be responsible to call an exterminator and pay the bill.
adusa37
 
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby iden » Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:02 pm

I do not know about the law. However, I suggest you can look into the contract details that is binding between you and your tenant(s). If you are running a hostel business for students or something then I am quiet sure that you won't like to have a bad reputation if the problem is spread.
iden
 
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby said99 » Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:04 pm

Having bed bugs is kind of like having lice. Would you pay get rid of their lice? Unless you gave them the bed with the rental than no...but if the bed came with the place yes! I can tell you it won't hold up in court. I defiantly would not have my landlord pay for it.
said99
 
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby sherborne16 » Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:07 pm

Having bed bugs is kind of like having lice. Would you pay get rid of their lice? Unless you gave them the bed with the rental than no...but if the bed came with the place yes! I can tell you it won't hold up in court. I defiantly would not have my landlord pay for it.
YES. I would take care of it as soon as possible. Some tenants will try to get their furniture replaced if it goes that far.
sherborne16
 
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby gowan » Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:17 pm

If you want costumers then eys you should call the exterminator.
gowan
 
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby mohammed47 » Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:24 pm

Read your lease. Bugs are generally a maintenance issue. If it were my rental then they would take care of it.
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As a landlord, do I have to get rid of bed bugs for tenant?

Postby gillivray5 » Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:34 pm

My gut feeling suggests no, especially if the rental was for an unfurnished property. I'm not sure about the situation if furnished however, much as there is a limit as to how much internal cleaning would be any landlords' responsibility, surely. Isn't it up to a tenant, to keep the place clean, and hygienic, especially if it was before they took the place?

I would also suggest that current knowledge would indicate that ALL places have bed bugs - in other words, they are around, unless the mattress was new?
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