Short-term vacation rentals are all about building positive reviews and few things ruin a positive review like bed bugs. Here are some of the steps you can take to eradicate and keep bed bugs from spoiling your short term vacation rental reviews.
Although keeping bed bugs out of your vacation rental should always be your goal, effectively exterminating them must be systematic and targeted.
- Carpeting: Contrary to their namesake, bed bugs can live on just about any surface with a porous texture. In fact, carpet can be better incubator for bed bug eggs than mattresses. To cleanse your carpet from bed bugs, you need to start by sprinkling a bed bug treatment into the carpet. After sprinkling the powder, you will want to let the powder set until the powder is woven deeply into the fabric. Lastly, you will need to vacuum the carpet, steam clean it, and vacuum it again.
- Bedding: Aside from stripping down the sheets, pillow cases, bed spread, and blanket, you will need to toss your pillows. Next, move your mattresses into direct sunlight (bed bugs and bed bug eggs won't survive in prolonged UV exposure), flipping it over after a 24 hours. After letting it sit in the sun, spray a bed bug treatment directly onto the surface of the mattress. Lastly, repeat the sunlight treatment again.
- Couches: If possible, remove your couch cushion covers and machine wash them on high heat. If your couch cushions aren't removable, place them in the direct sunlight (as prescribed for bedding). Next, spray every surface of the couch (including the bottom) with bed bug treatment. Lastly, vacuum the couch thoroughly with a rotating attachment.
Preventing bed bugs from entering a short-term vacation rental can be difficult. You don't know where your guest are coming from and/or what they might bring with them.
- Expectations: Establishing expectations with your guest can go a long way to preventing bed bug infestations. Specify with your guest that you will provide all bedding, towels, and pillows. To that end, you will need to make sure that all of these items are in excellent condition. Dingy items can make it tempting for guests to violate your rules.
- Spray: Periodically contracting a professional bed bug exterminator to spray your short -erm vacation can be well worth the resources you may have to spend to get rid of them. Most contractors will give you a discount if you agree to quarterly or bi-quarterly treatments.