Even if you clean constantly, pests can find their way into your apartment – they travel along heating ducts and water pipes, find their way through cracks and gaps, crawl through vents. And although your apartment may be spotless, your neighbor’s may not be. So what do you do when you see a bug – or even a mouse?
First, report the problem to your apartment manager. There should be a pest control service and most apartment complexes are quick to respond to a complaint. Next, be sure you’ve caulked around pipes and other openings to seal gaps. If you have a leaky faucet or pipe, get it fixed – bugs like moisture and will be drawn to your apartment.
Good night, sleep tight, don’t let the bedbugs bite … it’s an old saying, but who would ever have to deal with bedbugs? What are those, anyway? For much of modern history, bedbugs were very uncommon. But, well, they are making a comeback. If you find them in your apartment, what do you do?
Bedbugs are tough to spot – they hide and only come out late at night. You can tell if you have bedbugs by checking the seam of your mattress. If you have bedbugs, there’ll be tell-tale signs there in the form of black “dirt.” If you see this, or if you’ve noticed bites, you could have bedbugs – but although they are making a comeback, they are still relatively rare, so don’t panic. Make sure that’s what you are dealing with, then call your apartment manager to get an exterminator – pronto. Bedbugs will travel to the apartments next to, above, and below if they aren’t dealt with quickly.
Mice and rats should be reported immediately. If you see a rodent during the day, that is a good sign of an infestation. You may find droppings, or chewed-through boxes and bags. If you see this, call your apartment manager right away. You can try trapping the critter yourself. If you’re not squeamish, a snap trap is an effective means of catching the pest. Or, if you prefer, there are live traps – just don’t forget to check it, or you’ll defeat the whole purpose. Catch the critter and then find a place to release it (make sure it’s a long way from your apartment or it’ll find its way back).
Ants can be a challenge. There are traps and poisons on the market, but ants can stubbornly return year after year, so stay on top of them. Again, an exterminator may be necessary – be sure to schedule a follow-up in a few months. If you prefer the non-toxic approach, there are many home remedies to get rid of ants.