The boxes are unpacked (at least most of them), the furniture is in place, and you’re finally able to sit back and enjoy your new home.  Maybe you’re planning a trip to Puget Sound for a sunset dinner, or are headed downtown to meet friends for coffee and live music.  Just as you’re about to head out, you see it – the flash of a mouse running across the floor.  Unexpected?  Yes.  Manageable?  Definitely.

You expect your new home to be free of any problems, but remember it was built over time, sitting open to the elements and various pests may have made their way in.  Your builder took care to use quality materials and to protect your investment, so your new little furry friend may not have come in during construction – he may have walked in with the movers.  As a homeowner, you’ll be tasked with keeping the insects and small pests outside, and dealing with the occasional interlopers who find their way into your home.  Here are some tips for pest control for your new home.

Pest Proofing your New Home

These guidelines will help prevent pests from entering your new home.

Seal Entry PointsUse caulk to close any small holes where a mouse could enter your home around windows, doors and dryer vents. Mice can even squeeze into spaces where cables come into the house. Place a bit of steel wool or mesh into larger holes before sealing.

If you can see daylight beneath your doors, then consider adding an adhesive door sweep to close the gap.

Check around your chimney to make sure it is covered by a cap or mesh. This prevents birds, bats, and even small animals like squirrels or racoons from entry.

Place Sticky TrapsPlace poison-free traps in out-of-the-way areas to catch spiders, ants, centipedes, silverfish, and crickets. These are simple, cost-effective tools for keeping crawling insects out of your new home.

DeclutterSpiders and silverfish look for dark places to hide, so removing clutter will help minimize your home’s appeal as a haven.

Making sure foods, particularly grain-based items, nuts and rice, are in sealed containers and tucked away in cabinets, will also help deter pests.

VacuumEven the most vigilant home owner can’t keep out all the pests all the time, so a weekly vacuuming is key to removing any insects who have made it through your defenses.

Several companies offer bug vacuums for removing pests humanely, allowing you to capture and release them outdoors.

Add Insect Repelling Plants to Your GardenSome herbs and flowering plants have a bonus of repelling certain types of insects. For example, basil keeps flies and mosquitoes at bay, and chrysanthemums help with ants, ticks, silverfish, and fleas.

Pest Removal from your New Home

If you’re face-to-face with pests inside your home, then consider these solutions.

Traps and Bait Stations for RodentsThese devices keep any bait (like peanut butter or cheese) and poison away from pets and children. Widely available, traps and bait stations are inexpensive and easy to use.

Pest and Wildlife Control Companies for Birds or BatsWashington’s largest bat colony can be found under a railway trestle in North Olympia. If one finds its way into your home, you can try to trap it with a container or a towel, but you may want to call a pest or wildlife control company for expert help.

Humane traps are also available for stray birds entering your house. You can even use a leaf blower to direct a bird toward an open window or door.  If you find birds nesting inside or in the overhang of your house, getting expert help for removal is recommended.

Sprays or DIY Traps for Flying InsectsIf you’re dealing with flies, wasps, mosquitoes and other flying insects, your local hardware or home improvement store will have a wide array of insect sprays to use for removal.

Several DIY solutions can be created with items readily available in your kitchen cabinet, like plastic bottles, dish detergent, sweeteners, vinegar, and cooking oil.

Pest control for your new home in Olympia, WA will need a moderate investment of time and money, but your efforts will be worthwhile – after all, it’s your home and you should be able to decide who comes to visit.