Why clutter is a pest’s best friend

Mar 27, 2018, 09:30 AM by Fred Speer

The Clark Man has seen enough to know that clutter is a pest’s best friend. From spiders and mice to bed bugs and termites, excess clutter in a home provides pests with safe harborage that can become a nuisance to your family and a threat to your home.

Clutter in closets, cabinets, under beds, attics, garages, sheds, and crawlspaces gives opportunistic pests a place to establish nesting sites that are free from prying human eyes. And if pests go undetected and find sources of food and water, they will multiply and cause problems before you know what hit you.

A stack of old newspapers in the garage waiting to be recycled, cardboard boxes, a roll of old carpet in the attic or crawlspace, sleeping bags or camping equipment in the shed, and even clothes or bedding in a closet can create a friendly environment for pests.

Clutter in a home can also reduce the effectiveness of a professional pest management service. Pests don’t hang out in the middle of a room often, and if a technician can’t access the space to conduct a thorough inspection and identify the source of the infestation, it will be difficult to make an accurate treatment recommendation.

In the case of termites – an even more secretive and “invisible” pest – a clutter-filled crawlspace can prevent a termite inspector from detecting mud tubes or damaged wood that indicates the presence of termites. And, if left unchecked, destructive subterranean termites can threaten the structural integrity of your home and result in thousands of dollars in repairs and termite eradication services.

Other pest issues related to clutter include the risk of being bitten or stung by spiders or stinging insects when moving or reaching inside old boxes, sleeping bags, and clothing.

Mice hiding in old furniture or boxes can destroy items or create a potential fire hazard if they chew on electrical wiring. They also spread harmful bacteria to your food or eating areas with their urine and droppings.

Bed bugs enjoy hiding out in hard-to-see, undisturbed areas and can easily be introduced into a home through luggage, clothing, or bedding.

The solution to preventing pest issues related to clutter is simple. Take the time to store items properly – in sealed plastic containers – and make an effort to break down cardboard boxes and donate old clothes and furniture you don’t have use for anymore. Taking these easy-to-do steps will eliminate clutter and deny pests a place to live in your home.

If you think the clutter in your home is causing pest problems, call or text (800) WE-NEED-YOU (936-3339) or drop me an email at

Until next time, I’m the Clark Man. Thanks for helping me keep unwanted pests out of your home and yard.

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