The old mantra that ‘what happens in America today happens in the UK tomorrow’ could mean landlords in the UK will be inspecting more than their landlord insurance with a fine toothcomb in the coming months.
Website could lead to landlords bugged by tenants
The bedbug epidemic in the United States shows no sign of abating, and in New York especially, citizens are growing more and more exasperated with the problem. So much so that the governing body of the City has now set up a special website to give concerned New Yorkers the low down on the life of a bed bug and how citizens can bite back in their fight against them.
The website gives a complete run down on the problem of bed bugs; from the life cycle of the little pests, to which city department to contact when you have an infestation. The City Fathers are also telling the millions of tenants in New York that landlords have a big part to play in the battle against the little pests.
Information on the website tells tenants to inform their landlords as soon as they feel they have a problem, and there is a designated protocol for landlords to instigate as soon as they receive a complaint. They must take control of the situation and inform the tenant what they intend to do, and what the tenant must do to help. Advice on the website tells landlords to have the apartment completely de-cluttered and then vacuum the whole place before covering the property with a suitable chemical treatment that will get rid of the bugs. It is also the landlord’s responsibility to instruct his tenant on what personal items of clothing, bedding etc. they should clean while the treatment is doing its job.
Landlords need protection too
Landlords lucky enough to have property insurance that actually covers them for such a mishap will not find themselves out of pocket, but those without insurance could find the problem even threatens their business. It is just one more example of how valuable insurance is when trouble comes from out of the blue or in this case out of the duvet.
The problem has not yet been reported in England to any great degree but it is more than likely it will appear. Landlords here at least have the chance to organise their residential property insurance now before it is too late.