Pest infestation is any home owner’s worst nightmare and can lead to major problems such as structural damages and serious health consequences for you and your family. Keeping your home free from pests including rats, termites, moles, house mice, ants, cockroaches, and squirrels is absolutely essential. Always remember that pests are usually attracted to warm spaces and seek water in your house. These unwelcome guests move to a place where they can survive and their needs are met.
If left unchecked, pest problems can get out of hand and spread to neighbouring apartments and houses. Instead of detecting and handling the pest problem every time it strikes, it is advisable to have a solid prevention strategy in place.
Maintaining a clean, dry environment at home is the first step towards keeping pests away. Here are eight handy tips to help you keep your home pest free:
- Tip #1: Sweep and swab your home on a daily basis and make sure it is free from dust and dampness. You must avoid storing newspapers, paper bags, and boxes for long periods as they become breeding grounds for pests.
- Tip #2: Screening windows and doors with curtains and nets keeps insects out of your house. Also ensure that all passageways through the floor are blocked.
- Tip #3: Pay special attention to keeping your kitchen clean and ensure all food is stored in air-tight containers. Wipe away any food crumbs from your countertop, dustbin and floor. Wash used dishes every night as pests get attracted to food scraps sticking on them.
- Tip #4: Keep garbage in covered bins and ensure that it is discarded daily to prevent pests from being drawn to the odour.
- Tip #5: Cockroaches and termites are attracted to moisture so ensure you don’t have stagnant water in bowls or discarded tires. Get rid of old bottles or cans that can collect water and turn into breeding ground for mosquitos.
- Tip #6: Avoid using cardboard boxes as they attract cockroaches and termites, instead use containers made of plastic, glass or metal with tight-fitted lids.
- Tip #7: Seal any cracks, opening or fissures in the passageway or rest of the house. Rats and other small pests usually enter your home through these openings.
- Tip #8: Make sure that tree branches are well-trimmed and at a safe distance from your home. This will prevent ants, cockroaches and other insects from crawling into your house.
While it’s best to seek professional help when it comes to pest control, you may want to try some first aid yourself. Make sure you read the label of the pesticide carefully before applying them and keep them out of reach of your children and pets at all times. Here are some DIY methods to deal with common pests:
- Baking soda and powdered sugar mixed in equal parts is also known to kill cockroaches.
- Cucumbers are natural and non-toxic ingredients to get rid of bugs such as ants, wasps, mites, moths, flies and other insects.
- To drive away mice, soak a cotton ball in the oil of peppermint and place it at a suspected entryway. Like oil, you can also use alcohol to control pests, just spray it on the pest prone area and watch them go away.
- Wash and dry clothing and linens at high temperatures to kill bed bugs. Use small steam cleaners to care for mattresses and other bed linen.
- Plant neem and tulsi plants in your home as they emit some natural chemicals that prevents them from breeding.