Keep in­trud­ers out of your apart­ment

The Telegram (St. John’s) - Home Buyers' Guide - - METRO REGION -

No one rel­ishes the thought of com­ing home, turn­ing on the lights and dis­cov­er­ing that pests have taken over your home. Un­for­tu­nately,un­wanted in­trud­ers can in­vade your space whether you live in a sin­gle-fam­ily home, a con­do­minium or on the top floor of an apart­ment build­ing. And once they’ve set­tled in, pests can threaten your health, your home - and your san­ity. To help you keep your home pest-free, Canada Mort­gage and Hous­ing Cor­po­ra­tion (CMHC) of­fers the fol­low­ing tips on how to pest-proof your home:

Find and seal ali po­ten­tial pest pas­sage­ways. Pests can en­ter apart­ments through al­most any un­sealed or poorly sealed open­ing. To close down these en­try­ways, start by seal­ing any holes in the walls around plumb­ing and elec­tri­cal lines. Use caulk­ing or spray foam to seal pen­e­tra­tions in util­ity clos­ets, un­der kitchen sinks or be­hind toi­lets and sinks in bath­rooms. Caulk any cracks or crevices in cup­boards and walls. En­sure your win­dow screens are prop­erly fit­ted and in good con­di­tion. And con­sider seal­ing the gap un­der your suite’s front door if you do not have any hu­mid­ity or in­door air qual­ity prob­lems. Re­move the in­sect and ro­dent wel­come mat. Like hu­mans, pests need food and shel­ter in or­der to sur­vive. Make your home as in­hos­pitable to pests as pos­si­ble by find­ing and re­mov­ing any sources of high hu­mid­ity or stand­ing wa­ter in the kitchen, bath­room and con­cealed spa­ces. Avoid leav­ing food or food waste out in the open. Get rid of dead or dy­ing plants or flow­ers. Re­move any clut­ter that could pro­vide a nest­ing ground for bugs, in­clud­ing piles of boxes or other ma­te­ri­als left undis­turbed for long pe­ri­ods of time.

• Earn your good house­keep­ing seal of ap­provai. Many pests thrive on dirt and dust. So en­cour­age them to find other ac­com­mo­da­tions by clean­ing your apart­ment fre­quently • and thor­oughly. Wipe coun­ters, ta­bles, stove­tops and burn­ers af­ter ev­ery meal. Avoid leav­ing un­rinsed dishes in the sink or dish­washer overnight, and rinse your cans and bot­tles be­fore re­cy­cling them. Clean food spills promptly, es­pe­cially on car­pets and fur­ni­ture. Put your garbage and com­post in con­tain­ers with lids and dis­pose of them fre­quently. Keep your cup­boards clean and tidy. Clean and vac­uum in hard-to-reach places on a reg­u­lar ba­sis. And empty and wash your dog or cat’s wa­ter and food dishes daily.

• Spread the word. Pest-proof­ing is most suc­cess­ful when ev­ery­one in the build­ing is work­ing to­wards a com­mon goal. Talk to the other own­ers or­tenants about elim­i­nat­ing food sources, es­tab­lish­ing good house­keep­ing habits and re­duc­ing the en­try points for pests of ali shapes and sizes. You may also want to dis­cuss a pest-proof­ing strat­egy with your build­ing man­ager. If you find that the house­keep­ing in the com­mon ar­eas of your build­ing is not be­ing well taken care of, be sure to re­port it to your prop­erty man­ager, con­do­minium board or ten­ant’s as­so­ci­a­tion.

For more in­for­ma­tion or a free copy of the “About Your Apart­ment” fact sheet Deal­ing with Pests or other fact sheets on own­ing, main­tain­ing or ren­o­vat­ing your home, visit our web­site at or cali CMHC at 1-800-6682642. For more than 60 years, CMHC has been Canada’s na­tional hous­ing agency and a source of ob­jec­tive, re­li­able hous­ing ex­per­tise.

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