A blood-sucking bed bug. Photo: Scanpix

Housing shortage causing bed bug boom?

4:28 min

Young people across the country are getting ready as the beginning of the university term approaches. But, as always, there is a severe housing shortage in many university towns and cities. One of the hardest hit cities is Stockholm, which is lacking 7 thousand student rooms this year. So, many new students will be spending the first few months couch surfing or sleeping on friend's floors, and that can mean even more problems. Including blood-sucking bedbugs.

Anders Cronqvist is information officer at the student housing company SSSB, the largest in Stockholm, he says they are forced to spend SEK 2.5 million annually on sanitising student accomodation.

"We do everything we can to support the student", he told Radio Sweden, "We also pay the cost, and we also have one person who works with this full time."

Bedbugs hide in furniture and creep out at night, drinking unsuspecting victims' blood. Cronqvist says increased travel around the world has brought the bug back to Sweden, where it can thrive in student accomodation, with different residents coming and going.

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