Michiganders are natural “do-it-yourselfers,” and there is nothing wrong with that. Well … most of the time there isn’t. So, in the spirit of manly men taking care of the pest problems (which they seldom actually do) and women who are not afraid to grab the bull by the horns (even though their significant others are), I have compiled a list of several tasks that can discourage and even prevent critters from invading your property.

1. Repair indoor leaks and remove damp wood from around your property.

Ants and termites nest in moist wood.  It is common for homeowners to stash wood scraps and piles in unseen locations and forget about them.  For example, behind shrubbery and underneath decks are areas where clutter is often forgotten.  It may be time for a thorough inspection of your property; you might find something interesting.

2. Make sure to keep trees, shrubbery, and other vegetation away from contact with the structure of your house.

Vegetation expands slowly so overgrowth often goes unnoticed.  Ensure that limbs and branches of tall trees are not touching the roof and other areas of your house.  Check under your deck for leaves that pushed up next to the house.

3.  Caulk around window and door frames.

Insects and critters can pry their way in through holes that barely visible.  It will also help lower that nasty utility bill.

4. Cover gaps and holes in foundation, brick and siding, and vents with steel mesh.

Mice desire warm, dry nesting areas.  Mice can fit through a hole the size of a dime.  Make sure to cover those holes or you will have visitors this winter almost as pesky as your in-laws.

Mice

5. Keep garbage in metal or heavy plastic containers a distance from your home.

Otherwise you may be unintentionally inviting rodents and other critters to your property.

Now go ahead, pest-proof your home.