How To Get Rid of Pests at Home (For Good)

September 29, 2017
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Pests are called so for a reason - they bring nothing but trouble to your home! Besides being unsightly, icky creatures, ants, termites or cockroaches often cause major, costly damage to your home - and can even pose a risk to your health! But before you scream 'SOS' and reach for your local pest exterminator's number, save yourself the unnecessary costs and try these DIY tips to stop them in their tracks!


1. Termites

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Archiplan Interior Design

Got tons of woods in the house? Then your home is the perfect destination for terrible termites! These pests are incredibly common in Malaysia and infest to destroy wooden furniture, structural timber, wood flooring and sometimes even your most prized possessions like books and wood-based musical instruments.

How to Spot Them

The first step to getting rid of termites is recognising the sign of infestation early on. If you notice small mud-like tubes running along walls, termite pellets (which look like mounds of sand), discarded wings, sagging floors or tiny holes in beams or door frames, you mostly likely have termite troubles.

Get Rid of Pests at Home

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Another often ignored sign is ‘termite sounds’, which can be rather quiet and inaudible when your fan or air conditioner is running. Turn these off and listen closely for the sound of gentle hacking inside your walls; if you can hear it, termites might be eating bits of your home away.

DIY Fixes

Get Rid of Pests at Home

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Use Fragrant Oils: For wooden furniture, expose affected pieces to sunlight from time to time and wipe down with fragrant oils like neem, citronella or lemongrass. Then (with gloves on) spray a mild boric acid solution on suspected surfaces. Do note that boric acid is toxic, so follow instructions carefully or avoid using if you have young children or pets in the home.

Get Rid of Pests at Home

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Try a termite baiting system: Baiting systems can be purchased locally online for approximately RM100 to RM200. Still, the effectiveness of the treatment depends on the severity of the infestation.


2. Ants

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Blanc Designs Sdn Bhd

An infestation of ants in the home can be tough to deal with - these pests bite, swarm your food and are even capable of causing damage to wiring and appliances!

How to Spot Them

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Latitude Design

Unlike termites, ants are easily visible, thanks to their trail-like movements along walls, corridors and floors. However, ants are almost as difficult to get rid of as termites. This is because these little pests are able to re-tunnel to new areas in your home when you have identified their previous entryways and applied repellent.

Another reason why ants are tricky to control? They tend to forage for food in your kitchen, pantry or cupboards. Thus, if you apply strong chemicals to get rid of them, you could possibly contaminate your food as well.

DIY Fixes

Get Rid of Pests at Home

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Apply this non-toxic repellent you can find in the kitchen: Mix white vinegar with water (or lemon juice), soak a kitchen towel in the solution and wipe down counter tops, food cupboards and the sink area regularly. The strong smell will work as a deterrent. You should also sprinkle paprika, pepper, peppermint, or cayenne powder along wall corners where ants travel.

Use petroleum jelly: Since ants are often on the hunt for food, a commonly forgotten source is your pet’s feeding bowl. Be sure to dab petroleum jelly underneath the bowl to keep ants away.


3. Cockroaches

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Designva Interior

Cockroaches are said to have been around since before the time of dinosaurs, so you know how resilient they are. Still, since cockroaches can be bad for health in terms of possible food contamination, learning to live with roaches in the home is not a healthy or practical option. Moreover, roaches bite – and it hurts!

How to Spot Them

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Designlah

So how do you know if you have a roach infestation? You’ll be able to see them ‘roaching’ around, especially during the day, you may also spot egg casings and faeces in dark corners of your home, in bathrooms or drawers. You might even smell them – cockroaches emit a sweet, sulphuric odour (a bit like garbage) that they use to communicate to other cockroaches.

DIY Fixes

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Yong Studio

Use these household products: Place dried bay leaves near your food storage areas and sprinkle its powder in crevices of cupboards and along the corners of walls. Other ingredients that will repel roaches include cayenne pepper, antiseptic mouthwash, and lemon juice (or peel).

Counter odour with odour: In bathroom areas and non-food prep or storage spaces in your kitchen, use a water and ammonia solution to clean hard surfaces. The smell of ammonia is a strong deterrent for roaches.

Get Rid of Pests at Home

Interior Designer: Dess Interior Sdn Bhd

Cover up: The more you stop roaches from getting in and out your kitchen – the less attractive your home is to these pests. Cutting off food and water sources to roaches is sure-fire way to send them packing! So in addition to repellent, do also seal up any small holes they can bore into and be sure fix water leaks to cut access to water.


Keep bugs and pests away - with the right design.

A little upkeep and the right design goes a long way in keeping those creepy crawlies at bay! And we can help, request for free quotes here, and we can connect you to 5 interior designers, based on your budget and style.

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