Wednesday, January 09, 2013
Bedbug complaints double in 2012, Lincoln St. seen as ground zero
The street is a small but important part of the heavily populated area described as Shaughnessey Village, but which might be more accurately described as Concordia Ghetto.
It has by far the city's largest concentration of bedbugs, according to a registry that publishes complaints by those who have encountered with the dreaded nocturnal bloodsucking bugs which feast on your while you dream. One skyrise apartment building near Guy, the Port Lincoln, has been cited in a staggering 18 complaints on the site (although the rental board site doesn't record any bedbug-related tenant disputes from the building among its many bedbug disputes).
Keep in mind that the complaints are not verified, so it's possible that some are bogus.
Another area heavily hit by the infestation is around St. Denis and there are no complaints west of Guy.
If it's any consolation, that same site indicates that Toronto has a far larger problem with bedbugs than we have.
The problem of bedbugs appears to be worsening, based on rental board statistics.
The mentions of punaises, ie bedbugs, in rental board disputes in 2012 rose to 209, from 135 in 2011, and 126 in 2010.
Bringing a bedbug complaint to the rental board can be good business for tenants, as shown in this list of some tenants who did just that.
The names below are tenants and the amount that the judge (regisseur) ordered the landlord to pay them for their bedbug woes: William Lembe Titti $3,000 , Christopher Gibb $805, Martin Thibault $500, Darlene Lenden zero (an exterminator testified that she never had 'em), Daniel Lavallee $350, Vera Petkova $75, Diane Dugas $3,000, Sakaraya Marin $1,000, Yves Bellemare $798, Sylvain Gaudreau $3,300, Alba Mayra Valdivieso Ochao $1,500, Chantale Clement $1,500, Giselle Martel $600, Jacques Coulombe $302, Aline Mallette $1,100, Hortense Biron Legault $1,400, Shannon Lalonde and Jessic Norry $1,600, Mihai Cristian Samoila $5,000, Ruth Aguilar Ventura $600, Carole Nicolas $825, Carole Lavoie $1,243, Jacinthe Begin and Olivier Cloutier $950, Naimi Jaafri Hayana $1,860, Emmanuelle Marceau $1,122, Pasquale Giannini $800, Vanessa Langlois $4,608, Ricardo Candelario-Gil $2,020, Frederic Fay and Nathalie Vedrier $1,569, Francois Proulx and Myrna McFadden and Priscilla Brochu $3,000, Halah Al-Fadhil $600, Murielle Matteya and Solen Mbah $372, Melody Imbleau $1,211, Jean Francois Barolet and Karine Dube $3,250, Marie-Pier Paris-Cloutier and Nicholas Houde $350, James Leger $380, Anixzamar Medrano Castillo $200, Myriam Benavides $690, Lillian Savada $1,250, Shiva Zarezadeh and Mehdi Shahbazi $220, Ronald Simard $1,000, Veronique Brunet $725, Paul Fusco $900, Joyce Li $2,572, Aldei Cote $2,604, Francesco Ranieri $3,290,
I knew nothing about bedbugs until about five years ago, as I was more familiar with cockroaches, the insect du jour of the apartments of my youth.
It seems that cockroaches have been supplanted as insect enemy number one these days.
About five years ago I owned an apartment building in Verdun which was hit by a bedbug infestation. I was a bit slow to catch on to the problem because I knew nothing about the little guys and also because the tenant who complained about it was a constantly grumpy guy who smoked crystal meth all day, so I had tuned him out.
After the bugs colonized some other units, one tenant suffered a terrible allergic reaction to the bites and was a real wreck, whereas another old man had the bugs and didn't even notice or complain.
My efforts to eradicate the bugs were extensive and vigorous. I hired an exterminator and repeatedly rented a hot steam machine on my own to kill not only the bugs but their eggs as well.
I would recommend dumping liberal amounts of bug powder, which is non-poisonous but kills them upon contact.
Another tip: any piece of furniture that has been kept away from humans or animals for over six months will not have bedbugs and my feeling is that the bugs would not survive if you left a piece of furniture in freezing weather, so now is a time to put that couch out on the balcony for a couple of days in case you see such a critter.