How to Prepare Your Home for Pest Control Services

When you find your home overrun with pests such as ants, cockroaches, termites, fleas, spiders, or rodents, it’s important to get them out as soon as possible. The best results can be achieved by working together with a pest control service before and after their arrival. They will typically provide a list of specific steps to take before and after to best prepare your home for treatment.


Why Should You Prepare Your Home Before Treatment?

Preparing your home before the pest control technician arrives gives you better results and a better chance to completely eliminate pests. By cleaning, rearranging, and preparing your home, you are making it easier for the professionals to do their job. Not following instructions can make the treatment unsafe and some services will refuse to work with you if you haven’t prepared correctly.

Before Your Pest Control Service

While the specific set of instructions to follow will vary case by case, there are some general steps you can take to prepare before the pest control services arrive. No matter what type of pest you are dealing with, it is important to let the provider know if anyone in the household is pregnant, under the age of one, or has allergies so the proper precautions can be taken. Make sure the technician is aware of any pets that you have, and if necessary be sure to store their food and bedding away. It may be necessary to cover cages or tanks or even relocate them temporarily to protect them from treatment. Some other general steps you can follow before your pest control service include:

  • Keep track of where you have seen pests inside your house
  • Mop floors and vacuum carpets to remove pests and eggs
  • Properly store belongings and food
  • Move large appliances and furniture away from the walls

The level of preparation will often depend on what type of treatment the pest control company will be performing, whether that is bait, fumigation, or other chemical treatments. Be sure to follow the instructions provided by your pest control service to ensure safety and the best results.

Ants swarming before pest control

Steps to Prepare for Ant Control

Ants are typically removed through insecticides strategically placed in your home. In order to prepare for the pest control service, it is necessary to thoroughly clean your house for the best results. Thorough vacuuming, mopping up spills, and sweeping floors will eliminate any crumbs so that the ants are encouraged to go to the bait stations. Likewise, be sure to remove accessible food from cabinets and store it in ant-proof containers.

cockroach control

Steps to Prepare for Cockroach Control

Similar to preparing for ant removal, cockroach control requires a clean home so the pests will be more attracted to the bait. Any accessible food should be covered and properly stored. A vacuum can be used to remove any visible cockroaches or eggs, but remember to remove the bag and wipe down the vacuum afterward. Additionally, you should take out the trash every night to prevent attracting any roaches to the garbage.

Termite infestation

Steps to Prepare for Termite Control

Termites in the Charlotte area are typically controlled through installing bait stations along the perimeter of the building, applying liquid treatments along the foundation, and/or spot treating the area of the wooden structure infested by termites with a termiticide that will eliminate the colony. The treatments are not dangerous to the household but it is important that the home is prepared to make sure no signs of termite activity are missed. Following preparation instructions is important to make sure that the treatment is successful. Here are some steps you can take to prepare for termite inspection:

  1. Move all furniture and items away from the wall and make all areas accessible for inspection so that any signs of termite activity will not be missed
  2. Open all blinds and curtains to allow in more light for the inspection and to allow easy access to the window frames

These steps will make it easier for pest control professionals to quickly and effectively eliminate termites from your home.

Flea control

Steps to Prepare for Flea Control

Once fleas get into your household, they can spread everywhere from your furniture to your pet to all of your belongings. It is important to coordinate flea removal from all possible sources at once, so no sources of infestation remain. In order to prepare for flea control, here are some of the general recommendations to follow:

  1. Wash all pet bedding and human bedding in hot water
  2. Vacuum carpets and mop floors, making sure to get along walls and corners, making sure to bring dirty vacuum bags outside after use
  3. Clean any furniture covers thoroughly using hot water or a vacuum
  4. Prepare to leave the house during treatment for a couple of hours or until the insecticide has dried
  5. Bring pets to the veterinarian to treat for fleas while the house is being sprayed

Following these steps will help remove fleas from your house and prevent them from reappearing.

spider control

Steps to Prepare for Spider Control

Preparing the home for spider control can be achieved by following the general steps for controlling pests such as vacuuming, keeping the home tidy, and making the home accessible for treatment. If you see any webs while you are cleaning, be sure to knock them down and vacuum any visible spiders up. A spider infestation is usually a sign that you have other pests hiding in your home. A pest control service can help manage any and all infestations to keep your home pest-free.

rodent: mouse control

Steps to Prepare for Rodent Control

If you are seeing signs of a rat or mouse in your house, the odds are that there are more hiding behind the walls. It’s important to prepare your home for rodent control to fully remove these pests. This can be achieved by following some basic steps prior to service:

  1. Store all food, including packaged goods, in cans, jars, the fridge, or a thick plastic container
  2. Repair any holes in the walls or baseboards and seal doors that don’t close completely
  3. Remove any items from the top of appliances or behind the kitchen sink
  4. Clean the floors and take out the trash regularly to remove all sources of food

Keeping a clean house will help drive any rodents in your home to the traps set by the pest control service. This will help remove any and all hidden pests from your home.

Bat flying in air

Steps to Prepare for Bat Control

One way to help your pest control professional stop bats from entering your home is to go outside at dusk and try to identify the area where the bats are entering and exiting your home. When the technician arrives during the daytime, they’ll inspect your home, including your attic. So be sure the attic is accessible.

snake control

Steps to Prepare for Snake Control

If you see a snake in your home and you can identify that it is not poisonous, go ahead and trap the snake until your pest control professional arrives. If this isn’t possible, your pest control specialist will search your home to try to find the snake.  

bed bug control

Steps to Prepare for Bed Bug Control

Bed bugs are an annoying and dangerous presence. Even worse, they’re almost impossible to get rid of without professional help. Fortunately, we can come in and eradicate your bed bugs quickly and efficiently. That said, the more prep work you can do beforehand, the easier it will be to remove these bugs. The steps you can take to prepare for bed bug removal include: 

  1. Moving furniture at least two to three feet away from the walls. In rooms where that isn’t possible, you may need to take pieces out entirely. 
  2. Roll up any area rugs and put them away so they can be treated. 
  3. Remove any bed liners from your mattress and box spring and bag them tight. 
  4. Wash and dry your clothes and other fabric items on the highest heat settings. 
  5. Collect all fabric items (i.e clothes and blankets) and bag and seal them. 
  6. Throw away any infested furniture that you’re okay with losing. 
  7. Remove any outlet and switch plate covers. 

After Your Pest Control Service

In general, there are instructions to follow after service as well to ensure that the treatment is as effective and safe as possible. Each type of treatment will have a varying amount of time before you can reenter the room, so be sure to follow the professional’s instructions.

It is important to make sure the area is aired out and safe to enter. In addition, avoid spraying any insecticide or using strong cleaning solutions in the affected areas. These chemicals could interfere with the pest control treatment and lower the effectiveness.

Finally, keep children and pets away from bait or any treated surfaces. Following the proper instructions before and after your pest control service will help keep your family healthy and your household pest-free.

By Kristin Dodd

Kristin Dodd, the President of Carolina Pest Management, has been with the company full-time for over 20 years, but has been a part of the family-owned business for much longer. She is currently an active board member of the North Carolina Pest Management Association, and was the President from 2010-2011. She is a licensed operator in...

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