For many homeowners, the thought of seeing a cockroach is truly bone-chilling. While cockroaches are some of the most common household pests, they are also some of the most feared– not to mention the number of diseases they carry.

When it comes to preventing cockroaches from making themselves at home in your space, it is important to understand why they may enter in the first place. By following these tips, you will be able to protect your home from a cockroach infestation and maintain peace of mind that you won’t be seeing any of these creepy critters around the house.

What Causes Cockroaches?

There are many reasons why cockroaches are in your house, mostly due to sanitary concerns.

Cockroaches are mainly attracted to the smell of food and garbage, so you are more likely to see them if you leave food or trash bags unsealed. Cockroaches are also drawn to areas with excess moisture, such as leaky faucets, showers, and underneath sinks.

Pet food can also be a huge magnet for cockroaches, which is why it’s important to seal pet food in a plastic storage container.

Understanding what causes cockroaches is the first step to preventing cockroaches.


Cockroaches are mainly attracted to the smell of food and garbage

Signs You Have a Cockroach Infestation

Unfortunately, once cockroaches find their way into your home, they can be notoriously difficult to control or even detect. Here are some signs of a cockroach infestation that will confirm that they might be in your home.

  • Cockroach droppings (can resemble ground coffee or pepper)
  • Cockroach eggs
  • Foul, musty odors
  • Chew marks on household items
  • Smear marks on walls and surfaces
  • Live cockroaches seen at night

You can check for cockroaches at night with a flashlight behind furniture and in attics or basements to uncover any hiding spots.

When Should You Call an Exterminator for Cockroaches?

If you suspect you may be dealing with a cockroach infestation, it is imperative that you contact a pest control company immediately. Not only do cockroaches multiply very quickly, but they are notorious for being extremely difficult to get rid of, and DIY solutions just aren’t strong enough to handle an infestation so severe.

A trusted pest control specialist will be able to inspect your home to determine the level of infestation you’re dealing with and create a unique plan of action to eliminate the problem.

How to Prevent Cockroaches: Step-by-Step

Once an infestation has been dealt with, you can take several steps to ensure your home is not subject to additional infestation.

1. Seal Cracks

Cockroaches can squeeze through even the smallest of cracks and crevices, so it is smart to invest in caulk to seal up any possible entry points. For large openings around pipes and other areas of your home, you can use spray foam that expands to fill the hole.

2. Eliminate Clutter

Getting rid of any unnecessary junk or clutter around the house will help you get rid of cockroaches. The logic is simple: by giving them fewer places to hide, they will be less inclined to stick around your home. Even clutter like cardboard boxes, loose papers, and other random items should be properly stored and removed from the floor to prevent cockroaches from entering your home.

3. Properly Store Food

Properly storing your food is essential when it comes to preventing a cockroach infestation, as food will attract pests if not properly disposed of. Store food in airtight containers and clean up directly after meals instead of leaving a massive pile of dishes in the sink/. It is also important to properly store your pet’s food, as cockroaches are known to be attracted to their food as well.

4. Clean Up the Landscaping Outside Your Home

Poor landscaping outside your home can attract cockroaches, and these pests can eventually make their way inside your home in search of shelter during the cold winter months. To prevent this from happening, keep your grass cut to an appropriate length, and pull any weeds or overgrown vegetation on your property.

5. Get Rid of Excess Moisture

Cockroaches are drawn to excess moisture, so be sure to keep an eye on any leaking faucets or pipes to keep these pests away. You can get rid of excess water in your home by using a wet vac or running a humidifier in your basement or attic. You should also be sure to get any leaking faucets or pipes repaired as soon as you discover them to keep cockroaches from invading your space.

6. Keep Trash Contained

Keep all trash in your home properly sealed to prevent these pests from finding it. This also applies to the trash cans outside of your home, as cockroaches can swarm these cans as well. Tie all trash bags before taking them to the curb, and remember to take them to the curb so they don’t sit out for a long time.

7. Consider Your Location

Homeowners who live in more urban areas may find that they see cockroaches more than the average person, as these pests are more prevalent in large cities. They often make their way into apartments and rowhomes by crawling through connecting walls, so if your neighbor has cockroaches, there is a good chance you may eventually get them, too.

Follow these preventative measures to ensure your home or apartment is protected, and call a professional at the first sign of a cockroach.


How common are cockroaches?

Cockroaches are some of the most common household pests in the United States. In fact, it is estimated that 63% of homes contain cockroach allergens, according to the National Pest Management Association.

Having cockroaches isn’t necessarily indicative of a dirty home, as many people may see a cockroach or two depending on where they live or if their neighbors are dealing with an infestation. However, you can lower your chances of facing a cockroach infestation by cleaning regularly and properly storing food and garbage.

How do you identify cockroaches?

There are several different types of insects that can be mistaken for cockroaches at first glance, so it is important to be able to recognize a true cockroach. Cockroaches have a wide, flat, and oval-shaped body and are typically light brown or tan in color. They have six legs and antennae, which are responsible for their sense of smell.

What problems do cockroaches cause?

Cockroaches are known to be an allergen trigger for many people and can even trigger asthma in some. They can also carry bacteria that can be harmful to humans when consuming food cockroaches have come into contact with.