The last thing you want in your first apartment is a bunch of creepy-crawlers! Not only are they gross, but they can carry disease and be pretty dangerous. But, the truth is that for the most part, bugs are no big deal. Here are a few ways to prevent them from arriving… and what to do once they have arrived!
Keep foods covered or stored in closed containers
Bugs love it when you give them easy access to food. During the summer, ants will find their way in whenever you open the door. Don’t leave any food on your kitchen counter and keep on eye out on the fruit in the fruit bowl. As soon as the fruit starts to get a bit overripe, fruit flies swarm in.
Take out the trash frequently, even if it’s not full
Nothing attracts bugs like a bunch of garbage! Living alone especially, it’s not uncommon to leave trash in the can for a week or two as it may not fill up. Keep a close eye on what you throw away and be sure to take out the trash after you throw away fruits and vegetables, meat or seafood, especially if it’s raw.
Keep doors and windows sealed shut
This one’s obvious, but try to avoid letting the occasional bug inside! Check windows to ensure they are sealed and locked (!!) shut. If you need to keep your windows open for ventilation, make sure that the screens are not torn. Likewise, if you notice windows that don’t seal properly, let your landlord know so they can address the problem. If you have an outdoor light, shut it off at night if you’re planning to go in and outside – bugs can swarm around the light and straight into your apartment when you open the door!
Toss old food fast, and check the pantry
Even in the refrigerator, old food is a risk of attracting bugs! Make a habit of cleaning out your refrigerator every couple of weeks and toss old leftovers, expired condiments, and anything that’s been open too long (then, take that trash bag straight to the dumpster!). The pantry can also be an unlikely target for old food; check expiration dates on any dry items you’ve had for a while every few weeks to keep food from rotting there.
Wipe down surfaces frequently
And of course, keep your apartment clean! This is particularly true in the kitchen; wipe down your countertops after cooking to remove any oil or residue from your meal that could attract critters.
Call your landlord! They might need to spray for bugs again or fumigate your space, depending on the issue. Before they arrive, take care of the steps above to get your apartment in shape so their work isn’t in vain!
You can find more bug fighting ideas below.