While you may sweep your floor and do your laundry regularly, there are other things you may not be doing that unknowingly give pests an open invitation into your home. Knowing common causes of pest outbreaks can help you prevent them.
Easily Accessible Sources of Food and Water
Anything from food particles under your stove or refrigerator to standing water spots in your basement are signals to pests your home would be a comfortable living place. Other things to avoid include:
- Unsealed food
- Sticky spots left on countertops
- Improperly stored garbage
- Water leaks
Even the smell of food can sometimes be enough to encourage curious pests to enter your home. Washing out your trash cans and keeping your sink free from dirty dishes can further reduce your odds of a pest outbreak.
Unblocked Entry Points
Worn down weather stripping and cracks or holes in your walls are two problems that can lead to a pest problem. Many pests are small enough to squeeze through spaces that seem impossibly small. Other common issues could be missing or damaged duct covers, soffit vent screens and chimney caps. If you notice ants or other types of pests coming in from an opening in your wall or floor, it may be time to call an exterminator. Similarly, a dog house for hot weather can be the perfect breeding place for pests, especially if your pet leaves food scraps lying around. Make sure to check your dog house or cat beds for pests and keep them clean.
When your gutters are plugged you can experience more than just drainage issues. Stopped up gutters allow standing water to remain all around your roof and become a breeding ground for pests like mosquitos. Rodents using your gutters as a water source may also search your roof for vulnerable entry points.
Any type of landscaping that sits up against your house can lead to a pest infestation. Shrubbery can hide many types of nests belonging to animals that could try to move from their home into yours. Overhanging tree branches also allow pests to crawl or scamper onto your roof and eventually into your house.
Improperly Graded Soil
Whether you live in an affordable city like Minneapolis or a more expensive place like New York City, it doesn’t matter, if your lawn slopes down toward your house, you can experience standing water around your foundation after even a brief rainfall. This means pests living on the outskirts of your lawn get washed down right next to your house when it rains. It also means they now have a water source and possible breeding ground next to potential cracks in your walls or improperly sealed windows.
Watching for these and other factors that can lead to a pest problem can keep your house from becoming home to pests. If you notice a problem and need professional help, do an online search for “pest exterminator near me” and have someone perform a home inspection.