Pest Patrol: Getting Rid of Roaches

no roachesYou may recall from my post How to Prepare for Living Solo that I had a roach problem. This was a horrible introduction to living in my first apartment and, to be honest, it’s still a part of life, although much more under control. Here, I’ll tell you how I dealt with roaches with the hope it will help you!

1. Immediately notify your property manager

This is the first step you should take. What will most likely happen is your landlord will get maintenance to apply some sort of pesticide, and possibly provide you with roach killers – mine gave me a couple of Roach Motels. However, you are not done just because you notified your landlord. Roaches are incredibly difficult to exterminate, and many of the products used to clear a roach infestation aren’t fool-proof, meaning that down the line, in just a few weeks or months, you’ll have roaches again. This leads us to step two:

2. Buy Diatomaceous Earth and spread it EVERYWHERE

And when I say everywhere, I mean it. I bought a 10lb bag and sprinkled the dust along my baseboards, in the door archway of my bedroom and hallway, in the kitchen by the back door, near refrigerator and oven, and all around and inside every single vent. Diatomaceous Earth is an awesome solution, and it is food-safe too. Basically, the white powder (much like flour) destroys the exoskeleton of the roach, so when a roach walks through it and goes back to its nest, it soon dies. Afterwards, all of the other roaches eat it and become poisoned. If it sounds like I take pleasure in this fact, I do. I’ve had to deal with probably 15 roaches since July, and slept in my car many nights simply because I couldn’t bear the thought of staying in my house. You can buy a bag from Amazon right here and you’ll be set for a long time. Some recommend purchasing an applicator, but I just use my hands and sprinkle it, although an applicator makes the process easier.

3. Use a Boric acid paste

I have not actually done this method yet, but I am planning on it if my roach situation gets worse. I discovered this method through feverishly searching google for solutions to my problem, and it seems extraordinarily effective. Basically, you create a paste out of Boric acid powder, syrup (like Karo, honey, maple syrup, or a mixture of sugar and water), and flour. What you do is for however much flour you want to use, add twice the amount of Boric acid. Then, you add in the syrup until the paste is the consistency of peanut butter. BE CAREFUL when creating this – Boric acid powder is harmful when inhaled, swallowed, or in your eyes, so make the paste outside and wear a dust mask. If you can’t find pure Boric acid, “Roach Prufe” works perfectly as well, as it is 98% Boric acid with some food coloring.

You can apply this with a popsicle stick so you don’t ruin any of your silverware. Basically, put it wherever roaches tend to go, such as under and inside your cabinets, on your water piping, inside your outlet covers, any nook and cranny you can think of, you need to put this paste there. The author of the article notes the bait is not sticky, so spread it where it won’t simply fall off.

Roaches are a horrible hassle. I sincerely hope you don’t have to deal with them, but in the event you do, use my tips and get rid of them.

For more tips on pest eradication, read how to check your apartment for pests before signing the lease and how to get rid of  bedbugs and  mice.


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Author My First Apartment
Amanda S

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Amanda Szymanski is a 2015 graduate from High Point University in North Carolina, from where she earned a BS in psychology. She loves all things related to scientific research, art, and mindfulness. Currently, she is employed as a research assistant working on a study investigating Alzheimer's Disease. When Amanda is not working on research, she enjoys painting with watercolors, hiking, and reading.

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