There is nothing so unappealing for buyers, and sellers too, than finding critters have invaded a Windsor home for sale. The evidence can be overwhelming. As a realtor, I have seen it all, including mouse traps in areas that are supposedly hidden, rodent droppings, chewed areas underneath sinks, the pitter-patter of feet in the walls and so on.
For sellers that live near vacant land, or a home that is empty or in foreclosure, rodents may play a part in your every day life. However, when selling your home, you want to make sure that this problem is well under control. The last thing you want is a tiny pest derailing your home sale.
Rodents like to live near a water source, so if you have leaky pipes, toilet bowls and standing water, as well as garbage, you are providing a welcoming home for these creatures who can end up doing lots of damage to your home.
How To Prevent Rodents From Making Their Home, Your Home:
It takes a little bit of clean-up to make sure rodents stay away.
1. Keep garbage cans outside of garage and away from your home if possible. Once they find a food source, they will keep coming back and find a nearby warm spot to make their home, which chances are, will be inside your home, attic or walls.
2. Trim oversized shrubs and bushes. Rodents like to hide and this also serves as a great nesting area as it provides lots of shelter. Ivy is one plant rodents particularly love, so don’t let it grow as groundcover if you can possibly help it.
3. You may have heard this, and it is very true, but mice can squeeze through holes the size of a dime. It is imperative that you walk around and seal every hole that goes into your home or garage. You may be surprised to see how many little holes you have. Home improvement stores have sealants as well as wire that can work wonders. Also, this is also a good time to check for torn screens on doors and windows. Have them replaced or repaired.
4. Wood Piles:
Most of us have wood piles stored by our homes. Once again, this is a safe haven for rodents. It provides shelter and allows them to get comfortable, particularly during the colder months. Store safely away from the home and cover well.
5. Have compost?
If you store compost, make sure you have a bin that is secured tightly and don’t place them near the home. Also, avoid throwing food or any other edible material in your compost bin.
Once again, rodents love and need water. Make sure your rain gutters direct water away from your property. Also, keep watch on standing water, especially if you live in a woody area.
They say if you see one mouse, there are usually a dozen nearby, so it is necessary to get rid of this problem as quickly as possible. My suggestion is to hire an exterminator to help determine where the rodents are nesting. While there are many natural ways to get rid of mice and rats, if you want to sell your home, then following the above steps as well as having a professional do their work means that you are getting this pesky problem under control sooner rather than later. As a home owner, you don’t want anything to deter a home sale.
Finally, if you live next door to a home that is in foreclosure or vacant and you notice that rodents have overtaken the property, then it is imperative that you contact the owner to advice them and make them correct this issue immediately. If necessary, contact your local city or town government and report the problem. Health hazards can also be a real problem. Not only that, a foreclosed property can turn off buyers, so the bank or owner needs to be made aware that a clean-up is necessary.
Remember, these pests can ruin your home and it can be quite expensive to control if it gets out of hand. Rodents don’t go away on their own, they will only leave if you make it unbearable for them to stay. And I have yet to see a buyer who wants to purchase a home when there is clear evidence that a critter problem is evident. Even if your problem is small right now, get help because it will only grow. Rodents are like weeds, they grow until you can’t control them. Once established, they are hard to get rid of as they eat just about everything, and are quite happy if they are near water, warm and have a good food source.
Contact your real estate agent should you have any questions or need recommendations for a professional exterminator.