Oh, that dreadful moment when you spot a little critter or two crawling across your floor… Maybe you are asking yourself, “What can I do to get rid of these bugs?” or “How do I keep bugs from getting in my house?” No need to freak out! We have the tips and tricks to prevent those unwanted house guests from getting in your home!
How to Keep Insects Away from Your Home
The best way to keep from having to remove insects from your home, and to keep from having to repair possible insect damage, is to keep them out altogether. Life can get hectic and sometimes those daily chores start to slip away, but that’s when little bugs can take advantage of your busy schedule. Here are some ways to keep those little insects from getting in your home:
Eliminate water, food or shelter sources
Keeping your kitchen counters and floors clean of crumbs
Store food in sealed containers
Regularly remove garbage from your home
Avoid leaving dishes in the sink
Don't let water accumulate in or around your home
Fix leaks and clean up spills as soon as possible
Don't leave pet food or water out overnight
Even improper water drainage outside your home could attract pests if the water causes anything around your home to start rotting.
Close off pest entry points
Fill caulk cracks around baseboards, cabinets and windows
Install door sweeps on doors that lead outside
Check any boxes or packages for insects before bringing them into your home
Check and maintain window screens
Check window screens for holes
Only take out screens to clean around your windows, then place them back in
Avoid providing a hiding place or home
Get in the habit of taking a few extra minutes a day to clean your home, which may involve:
Avoid leaving piles of clothing
Not leaving dishes in different rooms
Natural Insect Repellents
If you've noticed there have been a few critters crawling around your home, you've probably already pulled out the pesticide, but before turning to chemical compounds that could be harmful to you and the environment, try a few natural remedies for these common pests:
Ants: Place cucumber peelings where ants are likely to enter your home1
Flies: Plant mint and basil near doors and windows to deter flies from coming inside2
Mosquitos: Catnip, lemon balm and basil are all three great, natural mosquito repellents3
Spiders: Combine vinegar and water in a spray bottle to repel spiders4
Plus, you can check out many more natural pest repellents like essential oils, coffee grounds and apple cider vinegar.
Insects and pests belong outdoors, so use these insect prevention tips to keep pests where they belong and out of your home. If you do ever have an infestation, you can call an exterminator to help take care of your bug problem. In the meantime, check out other homeownership tips.
1 Contributors, HowStuffWorks.com. “How to Get Rid of Ants.” HowStuffWorks. HowStuffWorks, April 4, 2011. https://home.howstuffworks.com/home-improvement/household-hints-tips/insect-control/how-to-get-rid-of-ants.htm.
2 Audet, Marye. “7 Herbs That Deter Flies Naturally!” HowStuffWorks. HowStuffWorks, January 11, 2012. https://home.howstuffworks.com/green-living/herbs-deter-flies-naturally.htm.
3 “You Can Grow It: Plants That Bugs and Mosquitoes Don't Like.” KTVB, June 7, 2018. https://www.ktvb.com/article/life/home-garden/you-can-grow-it/you-can-grow-it-plants-that-bugs-and-mosquitoes-dont-like/277-562290799.
4 “How to Kill Spiders Using a Homemade Vinegar Solution.” Green Pest Solutions, February 29, 2016. https://www.greenpestsolutions.com/2016/02/vinegar-rid-spiders/.