Pests are not only annoying. they can carry diseases, contribute to allergies and cause damage to your home. And, according to a national survey, over a one-year period 84% of American homeowners from San Diego to Nashville and beyond experienced a problem with pests, with ants being the biggest offender followed by spiders, flies, mosquitos, mice and wasps.
Clean Your Home Regularly
Keeping a clean house is key to a pest-free house. Of course, even some of the cleanest homes can experience an invasion, but your odds will be significantly reduced. Be extra diligent around spots where crumbs and other bits of food tend to land. Vacuum at least one a week, dust regularly and wash all surfaces with soapy water frequently to help prevent from pests making themselves at home. Bugs like cockroaches love the smell of paper and like to stay away from light, so avoid having stacks of magazines, newspapers and boxes. A great idea is to invest in a cheap dehumidifier for your home as well.
Plant Herbs Around the Perimeter
To keep pests from getting into your home in the first place, try planting aromatic herbs around the back and front doors. Not only will it keep them from entering the house, you’ll have ingredients to flavor up dishes just steps from your kitchen. Some of the best for keeping insects away are mint, garlic, lemongrass and basil.
Seal Holes and Gaps
Of course, you don’t want to make it easy for pests to get into your home. Take a close look around the perimeter, searching for any gaps or holes near the foundation. If there are any bigger than about a quarter of an inch, seal them up. Be sure to check underneath decks and porches. You might want to add weather-stripping to door frames to keep them from entering along the sides or top, using caulk to seal the joint where the frame meets the wall and along the bottom where it meets the ground.
Also look into areas around any window air-conditioning units, sealing any openings between the window frame and the unit.
Use Peppermint Oil
>Many pests are deterred by mint, including peppermint. In fact, research published in the Journal of Pest Management Science found that it was highly effective at repelling them. Use it by soaking cotton balls in peppermint oil and then placing the cotton balls strategically around the outside of your home where bugs and other critters might be able to sneak in.
Take a Close Look at Your Yard
Check to see if any branches from trees in your yard are touching the house, especially the room. Pests can use them as a kind of roadway to get directly into your house. All types of animals can get into your garbage and potentially even your home if you forget to tightly close a trash can lid – make sure they’re secure. You might also want to replace porch lights with yellow bulbs as standards bulbs, in the light on your porch for example, radiate ultraviolet energy that attracts bugs, increasing the odds they get inside of your home.