Homeowner’s Corner: How do you help prevent pests from getting into your house?

Since we’re here in Florida there are more opportunities to encounter insects of all types than in many other areas. There’s not much you can do about insects when they’re outside and obviously that’s where we want them to stay. So what can you do to help keep bugs out of the house? Here are some common sense tips from a local pest control company that should help.
First, keep branches from shrubs trimmed off your house. Branches serve as a bridge for pests to get around pest treatments and gain entry into your home. Also if shrubs grow heavily into your house it prevents proper air flow between the shrubs and your house. This creates moisture under the overgrown area. Ants, termites and roaches will love this area because of the moisture.
Keep trees trimmed off of the house. Both off the house and the branches as far away as possible. Roof rats are great jumpers and can gain entry from these trees. Rats can squeeze through any opening as small as their head. Make sure all eaves, soffits and vents are secured to prevent entry.
Pests and termites love moisture. Rain gutters with proper downspouts running two feet from the house will help keep moisture away from you foundation.
Wood mulch is wood and holds moisture really well. Termites and other pests love wood mulch. It is highly recommended removing wood mulch and replacing with rock, stone or rubber mulch.
AC drip lines equal moisture. Run AC drip lines 2 feet from your foundation. If the AC drip is right by the foundation the possibility of pest and termite issues increase.
Wood stumps are an attraction for termites, yellow jackets, carpenter ants and other pests. We highly recommend hiring a tree company to grind away the stumps.
Do not connect wood fences to your house. Termites feed on the cellulose in wood. Connecting a wood fence to the house can provide an entry point for termites directly into your house. The connection makes the soil treatment useless in this situation.
Do not store fire wood, leftover fence wood or any other wood against your foundation. Termites, carpenter ants and roaches will be attracted to it. Then they may find entry into your home.
Keep exterior lights off at night. These lights attract all kinds of pests. Highly recommended are motion detection lights.
Boxes delivered by Amazon, UPS, etc., may contain German Roaches, German roach eggs, silverfish or other pests. Recommend getting your delivery out of the box immediately and remove the box to your sealed trash can right away. Many pests are brought into the home by this method, groceries or family or friends visiting.
Also highly recommended is keeping dog food, cat food and all pantry food in sealed containers.
Many pantry pests including weevils are transferred to the house from your grocery shopping trip.
Check your roof, plumbing pipes, windows, doors and drywall regularly for water leaks. Moisture equals pests and termites. If termites have a moisture source they never have to leave your house for moisture. This means damage can happen much quicker.
Water leaks under cabinets are often not seen for months. Check the bottom framing of your cabinets regularly for water damage and mold. Roaches and termites will find this moisture before you do and create a major issue.
These are our recommendations to help you based on our decades of experience in the pest and termite control business.
Staying vigilant with these issues combined with using a solid, local pest and termite company will greatly improve the quality of your life and protect the investment in your home.
— By Brad Ward