This City Has the Worst Bed Bug Infestation in America
Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links.
In 2021, a new city has overtaken the previous three-year-running title holder. Is it yours?
This is one superlative no one wants their city to win. Pest control company Orkin recently released its Top 50 Bed Bug Cities list, compiled with data of the places where Orkin performed the most treatments for bed bugs from December 2019 through November 2020. The reality is that bed bugs have shown up in cities and towns all across America, from mansions to cramped apartments. They’ve been increasing in number in the United States since the turn of the century due to increased travel and limitations on certain insecticides, but numbers have been especially high in these cities. There’s not too much you can do to stop them; early detection is critical because there is no foolproof way to keep them out of your home. Here are the warning signs you’re about to have a bed bug problem.
Taking first place on the list was Chicago. Clearly, bed bugs love the Windy City. Rounding out the top (bottom?) five, in order, were Baltimore; Washington, D.C.; Detroit; and Columbus, Ohio. Chicago moved up from being third on the list last year and swapped with Washington, D.C., which took the top spot in 2020. Chicago also took the top spot for the most rat-infested city. Yuck!
Cities six through ten were Cleveland; Indianapolis; Cincinnati; Los Angeles; and Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Grand Rapids, at spot ten in 2021, jumped a whopping eight spots from last year. Los Angeles moved down five spots from last year and New York, a city you think would come in much higher on the list, moved down six spots from last year, coming in at number 12. No matter where you are, beds aren’t the only places you’ll find these pests—this is how to spot bed bugs in your airplane seat.
So if you live in or are visiting any of these cities, it’s wise to be a little more vigilant about your susceptibility to bed bugs and maybe stock up on a bed bug killer like this. According to the CDC, bed bugs often come into contact with people by way of luggage, bags, clothes, bedding, furniture, or anywhere they can easily hide and hitch a ride. Always inspect hotel rooms or any place you might be staying—here’s a guide to how to do so properly.