We despise cockroaches. These unsanitary critters can come from various places, and if you have a neighbor who’s a tad unclean, they might find their way to your house. We definitely don’t want that to happen, but how can we get rid of roaches coming from neighbors?
Exterminating cockroaches for the long term is not an overnight success unless you have to call professional exterminators. Luckily, this guide will teach you a surefire way to get them off your house, little by little, in ways that any homeowner can follow.
What We’ll Need
To exterminate these pests who invade your house coming from your neighbors, we’ll need the following tools to get rid of cockroaches once and for all:
- Diatomaceous earth (food grade)
- Airtight containers
- Pesticides or roach bombs
- Cleaning spray
We will need these tools so that we can first prevent those cockroaches from your neighbors from entering your house and then exterminate the ones that have come into your property. After doing all the steps in this article, you should have a roach-free house!
How to Get Rid of Roaches
Step 1: Seal all holes and entrances tightly
Cockroaches are small enough that they can easily slip through innocuous holes, and they can even squeeze themselves into seemingly impossible cracks. You may want to look through these places:
- Air conditioning units
- Wood panels
- Cracks in doors and windows/sills
- Open gaps in walls
- Pipes and drains
- Cracks near fixtures
After locating these cracks, you would need to fill these in with cement. You can also use caulk and other sealants, especially with pipes and drains that have leaks as well as bathrooms and other wet areas. However, for the rest of the areas, you will gain more mileage in terms of durability and longevity with cement.
Step 2: Keep your food items safe
Cockroaches are here inside your house for four things, and one of those is food. However, they are the last creatures you want to share your food with, so make sure that your food stocks and supplies are safe from these unclean critters.
Make sure that all your food is placed inside airtight containers and hidden in cupboards (that are also sealed tight!). Don’t leave leftover food on the counter or table and keep them inside your refrigerator instead.
Part of keeping your food safe is keeping your kitchen spotless. Immediately clean all food spillage on your table, fridge, and stove. Grab your cleaning spray and spritz a good amount on those surfaces to avoid attracting these bugs with the lingering smell of food.
Never leave your sink filled with unwashed dishes. Food crumbs and other pieces of leftover food from those dirty dishes are more than enough for roaches to hoard in your kitchen, so make sure to wash your dishes every now and then.
Step 3: Clean your living space
Cockroaches love the mess and the dirt, and you’re guaranteed to find one in a dirty room. Make it a habit to clean every nook and cranny of your living room to avoid the accumulation of waste that might become a suitable habitat for roaches.
Get rid of soda cans and snack containers that might have been piling up in your personal rooms. Any mass of trash, wherever it may be, will attract cockroaches like magnets so keep a schedule for cleaning out your rooms.
Trash cans are a cockroach favorite, so throw them out every now and then. Yes, even the ones outside of your house. Keep them tightly closed so that they can’t get inside and feast on your thrown-out food.
Step 4: Exterminate these cockroaches
Let’s get into the base of operations of these filthy insects. You’ll find these nasty pests behind your cabinets and wardrobes. The cabinets are perfect hideouts for these roaches because they’re dark and warm. Shuffle through the deep corners of your wardrobe to check whether it has been infested.
Don’t forget to check around them, too. These hidden corners exhibit the same traits that make them habitable to cockroaches, so prepare your pesticides or roach bombs. You can get your basic pesticides at the nearest store that works against cockroaches. You can also use roach bombs, although they are not as effective in actually getting rid of these insects.
IGRs, or insect growth regulators, are a special kind of pesticide that are especially effective against insect eggs or young insects. If you feel like these cockroaches have been comfortable inside your house for quite some time, these IGRs can help stop roach eggs and young roaches from fully maturing.
If you have children in the house, you might want to opt for natural pesticides like borax/boric acid and diatomaceous earth. Borax and boric acid are effective at killing cockroaches, however, they have to be ingested to work.
Pro tip: You’ll find that mixing them in with some food bait will be enough.
Diatomaceous earth (DE), on the other hand, does not need to be eaten to work. This fine powder is abrasive and will stick to the roach’s body, damaging it over time until it dies. Make sure to get food-grade DE, and sprinkle a thin layer over surfaces that are likely to be infested with cockroaches
These natural pesticides will take a bit more time than commercial ones, but they are a lot safer to use.
Step 5: Use repellents
After killing these roaches, we don’t want them to come back ever. That’s when we pull out our repellents. Repellents are different from pesticides: as you might gather from the name, repellents primarily repel insects, not kill them. You shouldn’t use them to kill cockroaches because they are not capable of doing so.
However, since we have already exterminated them (using pesticides) in the previous step, we will use repellents on the places that are likely to be either their entry points or their habitats to prevent them from coming back.
We’ve listed out the entry points (that we hope you’ve closed off already) in Step 1, so you might need to backtrack on those areas. We’ve also tackled their habitats in Step 4, so all we need to do is to use the repellents. You simply need to follow the instructions provided by the repellent of your choice.
If you are keen on using natural alternatives (especially if you have children and pets), you might want to use certain essential oils, which have been found to be effective at keeping roaches at bay. Peppermint oil has found the most success, while eucalyptus oil, lavender oil, and cypress oil have worked as well. Dilute them with water and spray them on those surfaces.
Other natural repellents include catnip oil and oregano oil.
Step 6: Extend the reach of your protection
You might think you’re done but you need to remain vigilant. If your house has been infested by your neighbor, then chances are everyone else around them has also been infested. These nasty insects can come from your other neighbors, starting the cycle over again.
But not for long. You need to extend the reach of your protection by placing diatomaceous earth and boric acid around your house. Start by sprinkling it directly on the edge of your house, then gradually increase the distance of the powder away from your house, until you reach the edge of your property.
Make sure that you gradually increase the distance, because instantly placing them on the edge of your property might introduce some gaps that roaches can pass through.
Be Consistently Roach-Free
These steps might be sufficient to keep the roaches inside your house away right now, but as long as your neighbors are infested, you are always at a high risk of having roaches come back.
To be consistently roach-free, you simply need to heed Steps 2 and 3. Keeping your kitchens and rooms clean is the best way to ensure that cockroaches are never welcome in your home.
The next best thing to maintain is the boric acid and diatomaceous earth sprinklings. These are, by far, the most effective at keeping roaches at bay, so keeping a stock of them around and spraying your property with these every now and then would greatly reduce the cockroaches coming to your house.
Let Your Neighbor Know
Of course, the best solution to the problem is to tackle the root of it all. Try to approach your neighbor and let them know that they have a roach problem that is spreading around the area. You can then share this article to help them eradicate cockroaches inside their own home.
If you are staying in some apartments and you find that the building’s infestation has been getting worse, it’s good to inform the landlord, who will usually call professional pest control to fix the roach infestations.
With all of these steps, we hope that you can successfully exterminate these unsanitary critters away from your house. Just like with any self-administered extermination, you will find that success does not come overnight. However, if this roach problem still persists, you might need to approach professional help.