Washington, DC

Photo by PoPville flickr user jimbographer

“Dear PoP,

Last week, I discovered termites on my floor and my landlord sent in an exterminator to treat my studio apartment and the one directly below mine. Last night, I discovered live and dead termites in my apartment once again and contacted my landlord. Supposedly an exterminator is on his way, but I have serious concerns that my landlord will only implement cosmetic fixes rather than treating the entire building. I’ve already scheduled an inspection with Terminix and gave them the number of my landlord. What else (if anything) should I do? This is causing me a lot of stress in an apartment I otherwise love!”

I don’t think you need to stress too much. I say this because you are renting and don’t own the unit. If you owned the unit – I’d say it is completely understandable to stress out. However as a renter, while termites most def. suck they do not pose the same issues as bed bugs. Termites are a complete pain in the ass and do a lot of damage to wood structures, so they should absolutely be exterminated. Of course you don’t want them in your apartment at all and just because they won’t bite you doesn’t mean they aren’t unpleasant to see. I believe they only swarm in the spring and then hopefully you won’t see them anymore. Now don’t get me wrong – the landlord really needs to get rid of these – but as a tenant – I don’t think it should cause too much stress if the landlord treats and cleans your apartment. It is in the landlords best interest to get rid of them but I don’t think you need to worry too much.

Of course I’m just guessing and could be completely wrong…

What do you guys think? Have any renters encountered termites? How did the landlord deal with the situation?


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