Pest Prevention Tips To Keep Bugs & Rodents Out In The New Year

December 26, 2023

Are you ready to say goodbye to 2023 and welcome the new year with open arms and a clean slate? Whether you’re a resolution-setting, nudge-word creating type or completely the opposite, preparing for 2024 doesn’t have to be an uphill battle. And that includes protecting your home from unwanted guests, namely insects and rodents. While we’re not experts in helping people set goals for the gym or other areas of their lives, we do know a little something about keeping pests away and that’s exactly what we’re going to focus on in today’s blog post. Read along as we share practical pest prevention tips. 


house mouse inside maine home after holiday season


How to store holiday decorations

We know it can be tempting to throw your lights, ornaments, and other holiday décor in cardboard boxes and drop them in the attic, a random closet, or maybe even in the garage, but this could lead to trouble and specifically pest problems. Try implementing these simple holiday storage tips and avoid finding mouse feces mixed in with decorations next year:

  • Shake out your tree skirt to dislodge any unwelcome guests and keep an eye out for pests as you collect your decorations from around the house and even outside.
  • Cardboard boxes are not a secure storage option, as rodents can easily chew through them. Instead, choose plastic bins with tight-fitting lids to keep pests out.
  • Do not store wrapping paper in between ceiling joists, tall laundry baskets, or anywhere else that leave it exposed to pests. Since mice may use wrapping paper as fodder for their nests, you should store in containers made from durable plastic with tight-fitting lids. 
  • Do not pack away edible decorations including candy canes, strings of cranberry and popcorn, and ornaments made from dough, etc. 

Pest prevention tips for the new year

Once you’ve packed away your holiday decorations, you can turn your attention to pest-proofing your home for the new year. Here’s what our local pest control company recommends:

Keep the kitchen clean

This is a big one since food attracts insects and rodents, especially in the winter when their natural food sources are not available. Be sure to wipe up crumbs and spills as they occur, clean up after every meal, take out the trash regularly, and store food in containers with lids that work. 

Clean & organize your pantry

Flour and sugar spills, chocolate chips on the floor, and open food packages are commonplace in kitchen, especially in homes where holiday baking has occurred. The start of a new year is a great time to pull everything out, toss expired items, transfer foodstuffs into airtight containers, and give the space a good cleaning and disinfecting.

Tidy up the rest of your home

In addition to cleaning your kitchen and pantry, we highly recommend maintaining a cleaning schedule for your bathrooms and the rest of your home. Cockroaches and other pests are attracted to toothpaste, hair, soap scum, and other things you’d rather not think about so vacuuming and sweeping, wiping down surfaces, cleaning sinks, and emptying trash bins routinely will help make your home less appealing to pests.

Seal pests out

Find and seal potential entry points that insects and rodents could exploit. This includes gaps around windows and doors, damaged siding, cracks in the foundation, openings around piping and utility entrances, and gaps under garage doors and exterior doors. Seal openings using caulking, mesh, and other materials that can hold up under pest assault. We also suggest installing door sweeps, chimney caps, and vent covers.

Make sure your gutters are working properly

Clogged gutters make excellent mosquito breeding grounds in the summer and can cause ice dams in the winter. This can lead to damages that carpenter ants and other moisture-loving pests. To avoid this problem, make sure your gutters are free of leaves, twigs, and other debris that stop the flow of water.

Pick up your yard

Trim back trees and shrubs to discourage pests from making their way indoors, haul away leaves and branches that litter the yard, and remove stumps as well as dead or dying trees.

Store firewood away from your house

We love a good fire just like everyone else but we also realize that firewood can be a magnet for pest activity. That’s why we always suggest relocating woodpiles so that they’re at least 20 feet away from the structure and elevating the pile so it’s off the ground. 

Sign up for home pest control services

Taking proactive steps to seal entry points, maintain cleanliness, and store holiday decorations properly will go a long way in protecting your home from the unwanted presence of insects and rodents, but you know what would be even better? How about implementing the tips highlighted above AND signing up for year-round home pest control services with Pine State Pest Solutions?! 

Our locally owned and operated pest control company has been helping homeowners in Auburn, Augusta, and Portland as well as throughout Central and Southern Maine eliminate and prevent pest infestations since 2011. You can count on our team of highly trained and fully licensed pest control specialists to protect against nuisance and potentially harmful pests that invade Maine homes. 

Check out our residential plans and pricing below or give us a shout if you suspect there’s mice in the ceiling, you’ve noticed other signs of pest activity in or around your home, or you simply want to be proactive in the battle against bugs and rodents in 2024! 

*initial start-up fees may apply.

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