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Tips and Tricks

These 13 things attract insects in your house and yard.

These 13 things attract insects in your house and yard.
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Protect yourself from insects

Just like humans, insects need three things to survive: food, water and shelter. If you are dealing with persistent pests, do not just hope for the best. "Think like an insect," says TruGreen entomologist, John Bell. "Figure out what that little guy needs to eat, drink and live in."

Deterring unwelcome intruders comes down to an integrated approach. Cutting off as many of those resources as possible will make your home less attractive to these bugs, stopping potential infestations before they start.

Good reading.

Standing water

"Any standing water that is undisturbed for more than a week can be major breeding spots for mosquitoes," says Doug Webb, Technical Services Manager at Terminix. Prevent mosquitoes from breeding in your yard!

Clogged gutters

After emptying or spilling ponds in your yard, make sure to check the roof. Backed-up gutters provide mosquitoes with another place to breed. "All they need is half of an inch to breed," warns TV host and spokesperson for the National Pest Management Association Bob Vila.


The key to avoiding pests that like garbage is managing the odor. "Not only is it important to 'take out the trash' before it builds up, but also be sure the trash containers are clean and dry," Webb advises. The coffee grounds is a good natural air freshener!

Wood pile

It may be handy, but stacking firewood against the outside of your home is not a good idea! Logs and plants can form a bridge for termites and critters looking to get inside, Bell says. Maintain at least a 6-inch gap between siding and foliage, and store nothing against the walls.

Dirty barbecue grills

Having a good family barbecue is fun, but the food left on the grills will attract bugs long after the end of the party, according to Bell. Another mistake that people do is emptying leftover soda in the yard. The sugary drink attracts ants, Webb warns.

Bird seed and pet food

Pet food feeds more than just pets. Keeping the bowl perpetually full may make your dog happy, but it's an easy meal for a lot of insects (as well as squirrels), Bell says. The same goes for bird seed.

Outdoor lighting

It is well known, mosquitoes love the light. Try to install security lighting farther away from your home, or choose special bulbs that emit less-attractive rays.


While ants and cockroaches can sneak into the smallest spaces thanks to their exoskeletons, a few strategic fixes could make a big impact. "Where I see the biggest concern when I look at customers' house is door sweeps," Bell says. Replacing the rubbery bottom of exterior entrances can stop ants, cockroaches and crickets.

Mosquito nets

The holes may look small and insignificant, but get torn screens repaired right away. Insects; they sneak in everywhere!

The cracks

Sealing every crevice around your home isn't realistic (especially if it's old), but applying clear caulk to an obvious entry point could shut down a major ant avenue, Bell advises. Steel wool can also fill mortar gaps in a pinch.

The fruits

No, you do not have to keep all your food in the fridge but try to eat your bananas and other fruits before they turn brown and you will not have fruit flies.

Cardboard boxes

Here's the motivation you need to finally clear out that clutter and clean up because termites like cardboard and glue that connect panels together. To avoid trouble with these bugs, store all your stuff in plastic boxes.


Do not forget to attack also the water supply of these bugs. Check if your home has water leaks and install a dehumidifier in the basement. Rectifying those problems that are causing the pest to show up will work better than buying a can of insecticide and spraying them.

Hoping that your house doesn't have these bugs that can cause big trouble.

Source: House beautiful · Photo Credit: House beautiful

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