Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Bed Bug Policy

Questions as a Public Housing Resident

What are bedbugs?

Bedbugs are small, brownish, flattened insects that feed solely on blood. Adult bedbugs are about 3/16-inch long and reddish-brown, with oval, flattened bodies. They are sometimes mistaken for ticks or cockroaches. They can not jump or fly. However, bedbugs are skilled climbers. Some studies show that they climb great heights in order to drop themselves down to lower surfaces that were otherwise inaccessible to them.

What are the habits of bedbugs?

Bedbugs are active mainly at night and prefer to hide close to where they feed. They can crawl several feet to obtain a blood meal. Bedbugs hide during the day in dark, protected sites. They prefer fabric, wood, and paper surfaces. Bedbugs often crawl upward to hide in pictures, wall hangings, drapery pleats, loosened wallpaper, cracks in plaster,and ceiling moldings during the day. Bedbugs initially can be found about tufts, seams, and folds of mattresses, later spreading to crevices in the bedstead or throughout the bedroom. In heavier infestations, they also may occupy hiding places farther from the bed.

How do I know if I have bedbugs?

A bedbug infestation can be recognized by blood stains from crushed bugs or by rusty (sometimes dark) spots of excrement on sheets and mattresses, bed clothes, and walls. Fecal spots, eggshells, and shed skins may be found in the surrounding area of their hiding places. An offensive, sweet, musty odor from their scent glands may be detected when bedbug infestations are severe. You may or may not have signs of bites on your body.

Can bedbugs carry diseases?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that bedbugs can NOT give humans a disease. People may have an allergic reaction to the bite.

What do I need to do if I think I have bedbugs in the unit?

Contact the Property Management Office at 256-760-5316 to set up an inspection. DO NOT try to eliminate the problem alone or without our assistance. It is a very serious matter and a certified pest control provider needs to conduct extermination.

Has the pest control person been trained to treat for bedbugs?

Yes, the pest control person is trained and will work with the Carver Heights Property Management Office and you to make certain that all pests are removed from the unit.

What can I do to make sure I do not get bedbugs in the unit?

  • Do not pick up mattress or other furniture from the side of the road, other apartments or from dump sites.
  • If you purchase or rent used furniture or mattresses, inspect them carefully for signs of bedbugs.
  • Inspect and wash in hot soapy water clothing purchased from consignment stores or second hand stores.
  • Because we know that bedbugs are an increasing problem, it is important and necessary to inspect any location away from home where you are planning to sleep.
  • Take steps to try to avoid picking up bedbugs from hotels, motels or any other sources when you or your family members travel, even to local destinations.
  • Consider purchasing a special mattress cover (encasement) for your beds. Rather than purchasing a cover to place on top of the mattress, purchase one that actually zips around it entirely and seals up the inside – meaning no bugs are getting in or out.
  • If you believe your mattress is infested you may want to consider throwing it away. Do Not leave it on the porch, in the yard, or at the curb as it could create infestation with your neighbors. Take it to the city dumpster or call the Property Management Office to have it removed.
  • It is much easier to control the problem when the infestation is small. Keep clutter down, so it is easier to inspect and bed bugs have fewer hiding places.
  • Wash your bedding, including pillows and comforters weekly and dry them on high for at least 20 minutes.
  • Bedbugs can come in with a guest, latching on to luggage and clothes. Take extra caution when you have guest spend the night at the unit.
  • Remove old furniture that is not used.
  • Vacuum the floors weekly and use a vacuum tool to clean the baseboards in the unit.
  • Wash and inspect your children’s book bags and jackets weekly.

Note: If you have a problem with pest in your unit, contact the Property Management Office and notify your Property Manager at 256-760-5316.

What do I need to do if I believe I have bedbugs in the unit?

  • Don’t panic. It is not life threatening and bedbugs do not carry diseases.
  • Contact the Property Management Office as soon as possible and we will schedule an inspection with a qualified pest control provider.
  • Do not have guest come spend the night. Once the guest returns home, they could unknowingly carry bedbugs from your apartment and infest their homes.
  • Once the inspection is completed, the Property Management Office will notify you of the results.

If it is determine that I have bedbugs in the unit, what will I have to do?

  • The Property Management Office will schedule an appointment for treatment as soon as possible. Generally within 3 to 5 business days.
  • You will be given a “Bedbug Preparation Checklist” (download below) which will instruct you on how to prepare for the treatment. You will be asked to certify that you have completed the tenant responsibilities on the checklist.
  • On the day of the treatment, you need to make sure that all bedding is removed from the bed, all the curtains removed from the windows and washed/dried the day of the treatment. If this is not done, you could very well infest the unit again.
  • If you do not have a washer and dryer in the unit take your belongings to a laundromat. Place them in a sealed plastic bag as you travel to the laundromat. If you fail to place them in a plastic bag, you could infest your automobile.
  • You will need to be present when the pest control provider arrives at the unit. However, after he/she gives you additional instructions, you and your family members will need to leave the apartment during the treatment process. Generally, you will be able return home within 4 hours.
  • Once the treatment is completed, continue to monitor the bed and apartment for signs that bedbugs are still present.
  • Do not use any other types of insecticides (Raid or Powder) after the treatment has been completed.
  • We will do a follow up inspection and a counseling session within 30 days after the initial treatment.


  • Bed Bug Extermination Checklist Carver Homes & Handy Homes
  • Bed Bug Extermination Checklist Cherry Hill Homes
  • Bed Bug Extermination Checklist Magnolia Gardens I & II


Remember! Getting rid of bedbugs is a team effort! It will require your cooperation and you will be required to assist us and the pest control provider eliminating them from your home.

What type of insecticide will be used during treatment?

The treatment MUST be very aggressive to eliminate bedbugs. Every precaution for your safety will be taken. Only a certified pest control provider will treat your unit. The pest control provider will use bedbug labeled Insecticide. It is an aerosol and will be used throughout the unit. Insecticides may be applied as liquids directly to cracks, crevices, bed frames, baseboards, or similar sites or they may be applied as dusts in cracks and crevices. The most effective bedbug pesticides are available to commercial pesticide applicators only. Professionals also have the equipment and expertise that allow a more effective application of insecticides than residents could do themselves. The pest control provider may also place “monitors” around the furniture depending on the infestation and /or the condition of the unit. The “monitors” do not have an active ingredient considered to be a pesticide or insecticide and are not harmful. They will be placed throughout the unit to assist us in determining if you have any bedbug activity (movement/traveling) after the treatment. Do not move or remove the “monitors” while they are present in your unit. They will be placed in areas that we suspect may have been traveling paths for bedbugs. Insecticides alone won’t control bedbug infestations. Your cooperation and following the directions on the”Bedbug Preparation Checklist” is required for the treatment to work. Please remember, you MUST not hinder the treatment of the unit. Your cooperation is essential. If you do not cooperate and/or do not complete the checklist we will be forced to issue a Demand for Possession and your lease may be terminated.

Bedbugs are a serious issue and can very easily infest the development. Please do your part!