Common Places To Spot Mice & Rats In Your Home

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Unfortunately for Maine homeowners, mice and rats are a common pest problem. Not only do they cause damage to property, they’re capable of transmitting illness, and quite simply, create an unpleasant living environment. Of course, it’s not always obvious, at least not at first, that a home has been infested by rodents and that’s because they stay under the radar when they first move in. That’s not to say they don’t leave evidence of their existence. If you’re concerned about a possible rodent infestation, it would be helpful to know where you’re likely to find these destructive pests. With that in mind, we’ll share three common places to find rodents in homes in this article.

mouse inside a maine home in the kitchen

The NPMA named kitchens, basements, and garages likely places to spot rodents 

In a survey conducted by Harris Poll for the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) back in 2017, kitchens, basements, and garages were named the top three places homeowners across the United States spotted rodents. While the results are out of date, the locations are still quite relevant. We’d probably add attics and even storage areas to the list but really mice and rats could show up in any part of the home (or camp) that provides the elements they need to survive. 

Why kitchens attract rodents

The kitchen is a prime location for rodents due to the availability of food and water. Crumbs and spills are the main culprits that attract rodents to this area. Food scraps in the trash can, pet food dishes with meal remnants and water on the floor, and dirty dishes left out overnight certainly won’t help in discouraging mice and rats either. 

Basements also fit the bill just fine for rodents

While you might not prefer dark and potentially damp conditions for your home, the same cannot be said for rodents. These critters love the anonymity and easy access to food and water that Maine basements provide. 

What could be attracting rodents to your garage

Bird seed, mulch, clutter, food, and trash are just a few things that are likely to attract mice and rats to garages. That and garages are easy to access AND are considered a gateway to the rest of the house. 

What makes attics and storage areas so attractive to mice and rats?

Rodents are attracted to attics because they provide a warm and cozy place to nest and they won’t be bothered by frequent visitors. Attics, closets, and other storage areas also house plenty of good nesting material – from attic insulation to cardboard boxes filled with clothing, fabric, paper, and other stuff that line rodent nests well.  

How do mice and rats get into houses?

The easy answer is any way they can! But on a more serious note, mice and rats will take advantage of any opening, including but not limited to:

  • Cracks in the foundation
  • Openings around bulkheads
  • Holes in walls, floors, and ceilings
  • Gaps around pipe and utility entrances 
  • Vents that have not been rodent-proofed
  • Spaces under garage doors
  • Doors and windows that have been left open
  • Holes along the roofline

What happens once rodents get inside 

Once rodents have found a way in, the fun (at least for them) really begins. Mice and rats can quickly establish nests and begin reproducing. They’ll travel through wall voids, creep along the edges of rooms, and scurry around searching for food and water. While it might not be their intention, rodents will cause considerable damage while in-house and it won’t stop until they are removed from the home. 

Rodent prevention tips for Maine homeowners

To prevent rodents from entering your home, you should:

  • Seal any cracks, gaps, and holes in your walls, floors, and ceilings
  • Keep your kitchen clean by wiping down countertops, sweeping floors, and washing dishes after each meal/snack
  • Store food in airtight containers
  • Empty indoor trash cans regularly and in between dump runs or trash day, store garbage bags in outdoor receptacles that have lids and that won’t be chewed through by rodents
  • Inspect your roof regularly for any damage or openings and make repairs as needed
  • Fix leaking appliances and other plumbing issues
  • Trim any tree branches that touch your home (especially your roofline)
  • Install screens on vents
  • Use a dehumidifier to keep the basement dry

If it’s too late and you’re already dealing with a rodent problem in your home, contact Pine State Pest Solutions

Sometimes and even if you take the proper precautions, mice and rats still find a way inside. If you’ve discovered mouse poop in a kitchen drawer, found a nest in your box of Christmas decorations in the attic, or have spotted a rodent in the corner of your basement (or anywhere else for that matter), contact Pine State Pest Solutions for effective rodent control in Auburn, Portland, and throughout our multi-county service area

Rodent control that stops mice and rats from damaging your property

When you reach out to Pine State for help getting rid of mice and/or rats, our locally owned and operated pest control company will send out a specialist to conduct a thorough interior and exterior inspection in order to: 

  • Identify the rodent
  • Determine the severity of the infestation
  • Locate entry points 
  • Pinpoint conditions that are attracted rodents to your property and your home

Once we have a clear understanding of the rodent problem, we’ll create a customized plan that would likely include:

  • An initial rodent clean-out
  • Minor rodent exclusion work to seal obvious entry points
  • The use of rodent bait boxes around the exterior perimeter and possibly in the garage, attic, and basement 
  • Follow-up services, if necessary

While we’re at your home, we’ll also point out any conducive conditions and make recommendations on how to make your property less appealing to rodents. 

What if rodents keep coming back?

If you live an area that is prone to rodent problems, you’d benefit from signing up for an ongoing home pest control plan that addresses rodents and other household pests such as ants, cockroaches, and spiders. At Pine State Pest Solutions, we offer home protection plans (like the one featured below) that are designed to keep pests out all year-round. For more information, please give us a shout.  

Home Protection Plan

Starting as low as $35/month*

local maine pest control specialist knocking down cobwebs

Pine State’s Home Protection is an affordable pest control plan that is ideal for homeowners who want general pest control services that target common house-infesting insects and rodents.

When you sign up for this ongoing service, you’ll receive an initial service visit to treat the existing pest problem and then seasonal service visits spread out over the year to ensure pests stay out. That’s a total of four services annually.

Pests covered under Pine State’s Home Protection plan include carpenter ants, cornfield ants, crazy ants, field ants, little black ants, pavement ants, carpet beetles, cigarette beetles, drugstore beetles, flour beetles, ground beetles, hide beetles, larder beetles, saw-toothed grain beetles, warehouse beetles, boxelder bugs, carpenter bees, centipedes, clover mites, American cockroaches, brown-banded cockroaches, wood cockroaches, field crickets, house crickets,  European earwigs, firebrats, bald-faced hornets, European hornets,  deer mice, house mice, millipedes, Angoumois grain moths, drain moths, Indian meal moths, Mediterranean flour moths, mud daubers, Norway rats, paper wasps, pill bugs, rice weevils, silverfish, sow bugs, springtails, cellar spiders, daddy longlegs spiders, house spiders, jumping spiders, sac spiders, wolf spiders, Western conifer seed bugs, and yellow jackets.


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*Some exclusions apply- please see your agreement

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