Lose weight. Exercise more. And keep your house free of pests! These are some of the most common resolutions made for the New Year (or at least they should be). Start the year off right by being aware of pest vulnerabilities and following up throughout the year.

Here are some of the best ways you can resolve to keep your home and family pest free throughout the entire year.

Be Smart About Firewood

Although the home décor magazines might encourage you to pile firewood up next to the walls of your house to create ambience, from a pest control standpoint that just isn’t a good idea. Firewood can act as a place for rodents and insects to hide so your best option is to move it away from the house by at least twenty feet. Spiders, termites, carpenter ants, and other insects are all happy to hitch a ride into your house on firewood, so be sure to shake wood off before bringing it into the house and burn the oldest logs first.

Keep Your Pantry Safe

Food stored in paper, cardboard or even thin plastic packages can be easily invaded by pests. Sometimes this kind of infestation happens in the grocery store and you then carry it into your house. Carefully inspect any food packages that you bring home, looking for gnaw marks, webs, or tiny eggs. If you find any of this, be sure to throw it in a garbage can outdoors and notify the store from which you purchased it.

Once you bring food into your home, store it in hard plastic containers with lids that seal tightly. This will keep any bugs or rodents from being attracted to your pantry by the scent. Clean out your pantry every couple of months, especially checking at the very back for signs of infestation, and wiping up any spills or pieces of food that may be lying around.

Scan for Pests Regularly

During the summertime, scanning your property for pests may come more naturally with the warmer weather. But wintertime is also a critical time to take a walk around the outside and the inside of your home in order to check for pests that might be nesting nearby. Check for loose roof shingles, cracks near windows and doors, and places around the base of the home where pests might get in. Also watch for overgrown brush near your home that might act as a hiding place for insects or rodents.

Seal Crevices and Cracks

Even the smallest crack the size of a dime or smaller can act as an entry point for rodents or insects to head into your home. Since they are looking for warmth and shelter, pests will often find the least obvious ways to get into your home and out of the elements. Be prepared to seal up cracks once they are found, whether reattaching loose roof shingles or filling between foundation blocks.

Read More: Houston Rodent Control! Tips for Rodent Proofing Your Home

Tidy Up Your Yard

If you think that yard work is only about making your yard look nice, think again. Maintaining your lawn by cutting the grass regularly, trimming weeds, and eliminating places for water to stand or pool is critical for residential pest control. The fewer places pests have to hide in your yard, the less likely they will be able to enter your home.

Reduce the Use of Toxic Pesticides

If your first instinct is to grab a can of pesticide (or head to the store to buy one) as soon as you see a bug, think again. Exposure to toxic pesticides works against your family’s health and should be limited as much as possible. Subscribing to a healthy home program offered by a local pest control company allows you to make health conscious choices while remaining pest free.

Read More: 4 Risks of Do-It-Yourself Pest Control

Be on Bed Bug Alert

Whether in the summer or winter, going places brings an increased risk of bed bugs. The best prevention against bed bugs is learning what to look for and then getting into the habit of inspections. Inspect the corners and crevices of your fabric luggage prior to use and after travelling; hotel rooms or rental homes you stay in; your bedroom including mattress corners, under the bed, all around nightstands. Don’t forget to use luggage racks when in hotel rooms. And once you’ve arrived home from your destination, launder everything and dry it on high heat.

Paying attention to residential pest control on a regular basis is one of the best ways to care for your home and family. For access to the best professional Houston pest control, contact Cypress Creek for more information about our Healthy House program. Enjoy a happy, pest-free New Year!

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