rat
The last thing anyone wants in their home is a rodent. Rats, mice, and even squirrels can be terrible household pests. They can get in your walls and eat your insulation, wood frames, and wires; they can spread diseases, and, in some cases, they can even bite.

Like with any pest infestation, exterminators will tell you the best cure is prevention. Before you can truly work on preventing a rodent infestation, however, you need to understand why rodents are attracted to human homes. Here is a list of three things that rodents love about your house.

Food Sources

Most smaller rodents, like mice, only need three to four grams of food a day. When you consider the abundance of available food in your home – pet food, open chips and crackers, crumbs – it’s easy to understand why they are so attracted to our homes.

Bird feeders are also an attractive food source, so be careful when considering where you want to set one up. Putting a bird feeder too close to your home could be taken as an invitation to rodents. They are also attracted to water sources. Consider covering your outdoor pool when it is not in use, and, if your pet’s food and water bowls are outside, bring them in.

Poor Sanitation

Your house doesn’t have to be an utter mess for rodents to be attracted to it. Simple things like crumbs left on the counters after making a sandwich or trash you decided to wait to take off can be very attractive to a hungry rodent.

Keeping your home clean doesn’t just mean the inside, however. If you have fruit or nut trees in your yard, it is important to keep those maintained as well. Discard and rotten fruits left on the ground will bring rodents into your yard, and, from there, it is a quick and easy transition for them to enter your house looking for food and refuge.

Shelter

Take a moment and think about why you like living in your home. It’s big; it’s warm, and it keeps you safe from the elements and other things outside. These are the exact reasons that rodents are so attracted to our homes. Rodents are naturally skittish creatures so whenever there are loud noises outside – such as traffic or construction – can cause them to seek refuge inside your home. Uncontrollable variables can also cause them to enter your home.

This can include decreased temperatures, extreme weather like heavy rain or snow, an increase in predators, or food scarcity. Even though you cannot control these factors, you can help prevent it by making sure there are no exposed entries to your home such as cracks or pipes. Your home also offers an abundance of good locations – inside and out – for rodents to breed and raise families. Everything from inside your walls to the firewood pile on the front porch can attract rodents to reside and build nests.