If you're like most homeowners, you start thinking about pest control at some point after you wrapping up your spring cleaning. After all, this is the time of year when insect and rodent pests begin to increase their numbers by breeding. Eggs laid in autumn are starting to hatch, and migratory pests are returning for the season. By the time autumn comes around, however, you've probably relaxed your pest control strategies — after all, many pests end their life cycles in the autumn while others migrate south for the winter. However, there are certain insect and rodent pests that have lifespans of more than one year who spend their lives in the same place — and these pests will be seeking warm, cozy shelter to wait out the winter.
Because both insect and rodent populations increase substantially over the course of the summer, it's important to take precautions to ensure that they don't gain access to your home interior — some of them, such as rodents and cockroaches, will even continue their breeding cycle throughout the winter provided they've got warm accommodations, possibly resulting in infestations that will render your home unlivable.
Following are three essential things you should do this fall to help protect your home interior against becoming overrun with rodent and insect pests.
Seal Up All Exterior Entry Points
Keep in mind that mice have been known to squeeze through openings as small as a dime, so if you think an opening is too small, err on the side of caution and seal it up anyway. Don't forget to check window and door screens for rips, tears, and holes.
Store Firewood Wisely
Stacks of firewood provide prime habitat for both insects and rodents, so avoid stacking it along the side of your home or on the porch. Keep it at least 30 feet away from your house, and don't stack in directly on the ground. Instead, place your firewood on a platform made from pallets or on a level bed of gravel.
Trim Back Trees and Bushes
Trees and bushes that are growing too close to your home may provide easy access for opportunistic household pests, so trim them back in early autumn — they should be at least three feet from your home exterior.
It's also a good idea to schedule a visit from your local pest control company in autumn in order to ensure that your home is pest-free for the winter. It'll also help you get a good start on keeping pest populations in check in spring.