Protect Your House: How to Prevent Pests from Destroying Your Home

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Knowing how to prevent pests from entering your house is an absolute must for any homeowner. Having pests can take away from your sense of well-being and security, and can throw you into depression

They can also cost you financially, as you will have to spend money replacing food and drinks that pests have ruined. 

Once these pests get in, they are very difficult to kick out. Depending on the types of pests infesting your home, you’ll need to take different measures to get rid of them. 

No matter what you do, fighting pests will cost you time and money, so it’s best you prevent them from getting in altogether. 

Lucky for homeowners, there are many things that can be done to prevent infestation, or at the very least, stop it from getting worse.

If you are at the stage where your primary goal is just not letting the problem get worse, you will need to call a professional. Some pests will infest a home and can’t be removed by any means available to the average person. 

So read this guide carefully to determine how you can prevent pests, stop them from spreading, and to learn when it’s time to call an exterminator. 

1. Knowing How to Prevent Pests Starts with Cleaning 

The number one reason most house pests will settle into your home is because of the food they know is there for them. It’s for this exact reason that you should do your best clean up after yourself. 

The amount of food residue on crumbs and unwashed dishes might be minuscule for humans, but for insects, you may as well have left out a 3-course-meal. Always wash up any crumbs, dishes, or messes the second you see them. 

Denying access to food can make all types of pests move elsewhere. Roaches, mice, rats, and ants don’t want to stick around in any place where they can’t get a free meal. 

Cleaning also doesn’t always go far enough. Deny further access to food by pouring out anything contained in a cardboard box into a plastic container. 

This will prevent any mice or rodents from chewing through the box, and preventing bugs from crawling in through any holes. 

2. Seal Any Cracks You Find 

Although most pests are flexible and can get into your house from really small holes, they do have limits. 

Look around your roof, the crawlspace beneath the house, and inside your attic. Find any holes a mouse or insect might try to crawl through. 

Once you find them, seal them up with steel wool, rubber cement, or anything that can’t be chewed through by any rats, or crawled under by any insects. 

Also, make sure there are no tears in your bug mesh. Doing this will prevent any flying insects from getting inside your house, and physically secure your house from common house bugs. 

3. Check the Area Around Your House 

Wasps, hornets, and rodents can still be a plague on your house even if they can’t get inside. 

Some species of rodents are capable of making colonies in bushes outside of homes. Once they’ve done this, they can start snacking on your garbage. 

Wasps and their ilk may also take interest in your trash, and are a huge nuisance during any outdoor get-togethers. 

You can prevent these sorts of rodent colonies from forming by trimming the hedges around your house. 

For wasps and hornets, your best bet is to destroy their nests before they’re complete. Usually, only a queen wasp will start building a nest. If the nest is not staying up, she will move to a location where it will. 

If you’ve already got a full formed hornet’s nest on your hands, you should call a professional to remove it. 

Hornets are very aggressive. Their stings hurt a lot but aren’t likely to kill you unless you have an allergy. And it’s best not to find out that you’re deathly allergic to wasp stings the hard way. 

4. Get a Dehumidifier to Combat Spiders 

Spiders usually make their homes in dark, humid places. This is why dehumidifiers are so important. 

Just leave the dehumidifier wherever the infestation has occurred, and after a while, the spider population should go down significantly. 

This hands-off approach is especially good for anyone who is understandably unwilling to expose themselves to spiders for a long period of time. 

This is especially preferable if the spiders are venomous like black widows or brown recluses, both of which are common in Memphis.

Although if a pest in the house is venomous, calling a trained professional to get rid of them is the safest course of action. 

5. Bed Bugs Don’t like Heat 

Unfortunately, cleanliness is not enough to get rid of bed bugs. Unlike the other critters on this list, bed bugs survive by sucking human blood. 

They also don’t need to smell food, crawl into your house, or fly to get into your home. Bed bugs most often take refuge in fabric and travel on people’s clothes and reproduce in people’s homes. 

You can get rid of bed bugs without calling an exterminator. However, you will spend the same amount of money getting rid of your furniture and buying new furniture as hiring an exterminator. 

So, you’re better off getting a professional to make sure they’re gone. But, if you’d like to cull their numbers, you need to throw out any furniture with fabric. 

Then you need to wash anything that can be washed. The most important part of this is to dry these clothes on the highest possible heat setting for the longest amount of time. 

Bed bugs can’t survive high temperatures, and they can’t survive without blood. So you’ll also need to put your clothes in plastic bags, and put them on a radiator for a while before you put them on. 

6. Secure Your Trash Lids and Use Poison

Pests that live outside are likely to eat your garbage. So if you want to avoid flies or rodents tearing holes in your trash, make sure the lid is sealed properly. 

If you want to go the extra mile, you can leave out rat poison outside your house. if you’ve been starving them, they’ll be desperate for any food they can get. 

Once enough members of the colony are dying of starvation or poison, they’ll get the memo that your house is dangerous, and move on assuming they don’t all die. 

If you have any outside pets, you should avoid putting out poison so that your animal doesn’t eat any by accident. 

7. Invest in Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth is the best preventative method for dealing with an insect or spider. If your household pests are mammals, diatomaceous earth will not help you. 

Diatomaceous earth is the crystalline remains of microscopic creatures that lived on earth a long time ago. Unfortunately for modern insects, the diatomaceous earth is like shards of glass against their exoskeleton. 

When an insect with an exoskeleton is covered in it, their exoskeleton is shredded, leaving them exposed and causing them to dry out and die. 

You can spread this along the ground, or cover any insects you see with it and they’ll die pretty quickly. 

Insects are unlikely to eat diatomaceous earth because it can also tear them apart from the inside. 

8. Know When to Call a Professional 

If you’ve tried everything and household pests somehow continue to find a way to survive in your home, you need to call a professional. 

You may have missed something, or your infestation may not be something an untrained person can deal with. Plus, hiring an exterminator leaves you free to do what you need to, instead of killing vermin all day. 

You should also call an exterminator if you think you have termites. Termites cause a billion dollars in property damage every year, and you don’t want to miss any of them in a DIY extermination attempt. 

Even if you don’t think you have termites, checking for termites is simple, and is worth your while to avoid damage in the future. 

Take Your Memphis Home Back from Pests

Once your home is infested with vermin, and you’ve been fighting them for a while, you can start to feel powerless. 

Vermin can make themselves seem like they’re everywhere you look, and that there’s no escaping them. After all, your home is supposed to be your sanctuary, and an infestation can start to feel personal after a while. 

However, you should always do your best to maintain your composure. Panicking is not the recommended course of action in any scenario. 

If you can keep a cool head, you’ll be able to put all of the previous tips into action and maximize the effectiveness of each. 

And it’s important to remember that regaining control over your house is possible. Plus, you’ll never forget how to prevent pests from getting in once you’ve finally gotten rid of them. 

You don’t have to feel your skin crawl every time you see something small flicker by in your peripheral vision. 

If the problem has become too much for you to handle, there are exterminators who can help you regain your peace of mind. 

Schedule an appointment with the experts today and take your life back. 

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About the Author:

Chris Murphy is President of Inman-Murphy Inc., one of the fastest growing pest control companies in Memphis, TN.