Texas Living

Is Something in the Attic?

By James Mayfield 9.15.15

As temperatures dip and leaves begin to fall, neighborhood critters tend to seek shelter in warm and cozy confines. But before the seasons change and you unknowingly invite a raccoon into the eaves of your attic, use these simple tips to protect your home from unwanted houseguests:

  • Seal the perimeter: Animals seek food, water, and shelter, so before you find yourself hosting an open house, search your home’s foundation and seal any holes and gaps larger than the width of a pencil. Don’t forget about the spaces around air conditioning units, dryer vents, door and windows, trim and siding, and porches and decks.
  • Clear the clutter: Don’t provide pests with an all-you-can-eat buffet or a ready-made shelter. Relocate that fresh woodpile stacked against the side of your home and those leftover cardboard boxes in the garage. Seal garbage cans with lids, fence in vegetable gardens, and upgrade to bird feeders with trays to catch seed. Also move pet food indoors and secure doggie doors.
  • Remember the roof: Prevent fluttering feathered friends from entering your home with a secure chimney cap and sealed gable vents. Caulk openings larger than a ¼-inch by ½-inch wide. Check for branches leaning against your roof, which create a superhighway for critters.

Sometimes, even with precautions, creepy crawlies still find a way inside. When this happens, it’s best to call in the pros. Professional animal and pest control experts not only know Texas state and local wildlife regulations, they can advise you on other potential hazards, such as chewed electrical wire. Think twice about taking this problem into your hands — it could come back to bite you in more ways than one.

Find more home-care tips on TexasHeritageforLiving.com.