Bed Bugs and Other Problems


  • Insects and rodents—cockroaches, bed bugs, and mice can be a problem in an urban environment. State sanitary codes require landowners to exterminate if an infestation occurs. You or your landlord should consult a professional pest control company to take care of the problem safely and effectively. If the landlord is not cooperative, contact Boston Inspectional Services Department, 617-635-5322.


  • State Sanitary Code – The Massachusetts Code detailing standards to be maintained by occupants and owners.


  • Insect Infestation Addendum – A Greater Boston Real Estate Board document which can be made part of your lease or tenancy agreement.




  • The Massachusetts Sanitary Code states the following about bed bugs:“an occupant should call their landlord or property manager as soon as a bed bug infestation is suspected. ‘Minimum Standards of Fitness for Human Habitation’ requires the Inspectional Services Department (ISD) to inspect the dwelling unit upon receipt of a complaint for an insect infestation, the inspection be conducted within 24 hours after receipt of a complaint. The inspector will conduct a thorough inspection of the unit to determine whether a bed bug infestation exists. The inspector will examine all potential sources of bed bugs in the unit, including the room perimeters, furniture, storage areas, and mattresses and box springs.”


  • “the owner of a building containing two or more dwelling units is responsible for maintaining the dwelling and its premises free of pests and insect pests and is responsible for exterminating pests. If an infestation is detected, the landlord or property management company will be served with an order to exterminate the bed bugs.”