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4 Ways Your Home Is Inviting Winter Pests Inside

image of a cracked foundation

The cycles of nature ensure that every year the same thing is going to happen. It is going to get cold and bugs and mammals are going to seek shelter from that cold. It is as inevitable at the rising of the sun. But having pests inside your home isn't inevitable. Bugs and wildlife are looking for the "right" place to overwinter or hibernate. Are you inviting them to stay at your house? Let's find out.

Here are four ways your home may be inviting winter pests to stay.

  1. Does your home feel like home to pests? Yard clutter draws bugs and wildlife into a yard. It feels like nature to them if everything is overgrown and littered with things to explore and nest in. Clutter also offers bugs a sense of protection as they enter your yard. They are small and will not traverse open, clean spaces if they can help it. Keeping woodpiles, construction materials, old tires, cinder blocks, stacks of bricks, toys, and other lawn junk--especially if it is overgrown with grass or weeds--will definitely invite creatures of all sizes to come near your house.
  2. Is your door wide open? Bugs are going to go toward the path of least resistance. If you have damaged screens, door sweeps or weather stripping, they will find their way in out of the cold. They're also looking for rotted holes and will be more than happy to make those holes bigger if needed. Sealing up holes is imperative to deterring bugs and small mammals.
  3. Is there food? Open garbage cans, pet food in a dish, or leftover barbecue items are like clanging the dinner bell for bugs. "Come and GET it! Many insects and mammals have an acute sense of smell, and rotting food will draw them from a great distance.
  4. Is the humidity right? Pests love moisture. Smaller pests, like many insects and spiders, need moisture to live. They are not built to survive in our dry indoor conditions. Keep your home dry and well ventilated, especially in the cellar. Make sure your gutter system funnels water away from your foundation. And if you have areas that pool with water after a rain storm, see about filling those areas in.

Pests will enter homes in winter. If you make your home less inviting, you'll have fewer bugs. If any of these four tips seem impossible because of your particular situation, contact a pest control company. With a perimeter or exterior wall spray, you can take some of the burden of exclusion off your shoulders. A pest professional can show you exclusion methods that will work for the conditions of your home. Give them a jingle. It doesn't cost anything to call. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.