Tenants Use Bedbugs to Stay in Apartments

 Tenants fighting the conversion of a rooming house in Chicago used a novel argument to avoid being evicted: Bedbugs.

The tenants used the fact of a massive bedbug infestation to argue that they cannot leave. According to a news report, the tenants claimed that moving their furniture and possessions would only spread the infestation somewhere else.

In the end, however, the tenants agreed to withdraw their objections — in exchange for cash.

As part of the agreement, exiting tenants will be allowed to run their belongings through a heat chamber designed to kill bedbugs, according to the report.

The landlord is mired in a legal battle with the city over bedbugs. According to the report, the infestation is so severe that city officials say the building needs to be gutted. However, there also is a moratorium on new building permits, which could make the rehab impossible.

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