Guests and Pests: Tips to Protect Your Property from Pest Infestation
This guest post is brought to us courtesy of Pest Strategies.
As an Airbnb host, you get a wide range of guests renting your property. It’s essential that your property stay well-maintained. Especially when it comes to preventing pest infestation.
You want to avoid creepy crawlies from invading your property. But what happens when one of your guests is a carrier for pests like bed bugs?
Bed bugs not only cause very serious problems, they are extremely difficult to get rid of. So preventing bed bugs (and other pests) from getting in is a top priority.
Here’s how to avoid bed bugs and other pests:
What To Look For Before Guests Arrive
Advanced preparation is the most effective way to prevent pest infestation. Here’s what to check before your guests arrive:
The more clutter you have, the easier it is for bugs to conceal themselves. Some clingy insects can stay in a single position for long time periods.
Avoid all clutter, especially against walls. Remove unnecessary items and keep the rest of your items organized.
Fix Potential Entry Points
Check for other ways pests could enter your Airbnb property. They can get in through cracks in your walls, as well as through torn screens. So be sure to fill or repair any wall cracks and check for damaged windows and screens.
How to Prevent Your Guests From Bringing Bugs In
Once guests arrive, how can you prevent them from bringing bugs into your Airbnb property? Here are tips to help you:
Keep Your Guest Bed/Couch Protected
The most common places to find bed bugs are in couches and beds. These offer an extensive network of hiding places and makes extermination difficult. So you need to protect your furniture at all costs.
Ensure that you take certain measures to keep your furniture pest free. For example:
- avoid upholstered items when possible
- inspect for signs after every guest stay
- store bedding and towels in sealed containers
- vacuum mattresses, box springs upholstered furniture and floors well
- encase your mattress and furniture during unrented stretches.
Have a Closet for Guests’ Belongings
If your Airbnb property is constantly booked, you need to do extra work to prevent a pest infestation.
First off, reserve a particular closet for guests only. After the guest leaves, you can deep clean the closet. Vacuum and throw out the vacuum bag immediately.
If a guest stays for an extended period, use encasements like mattress safe covers. This helps prevent the mattress from getting infested.
Your diligence is the single factor that can prevent an infestation. Pay attention to every detail of your property. Though difficult, you can see bed bugs with the naked eye — especially if you are looking out for them.
If you’re alert, you can forestall the occurrence of an infestation.
What to Look Out For After Guests Leave
After your guests leave, watch out for signs of infestation.
Know Exactly What Bed Bugs Look Like
There are different types of bugs, some harmful and some harmless. So you need to be able to identify bed bugs, even from a distance. It’s only when you know what the bugs look like that you know what to look out for.
Keep tabs on the surfaces where pests hang out or in the rooms where your guests stayed the longest.
Use light-colored bed sheets and couch covers. Bed bugs stand out against light surfaces.
Inspect Your Furniture
Furniture is the favorite all-time hiding places of bed bugs. They hide in crevices, cracks and under peeling paint. They also shy away from light, so darker areas are more likely to attract pests.
Look Out For Traces of Bed Bugs
Bed bugs usually leave tell-tale signs of their presence and they are pretty easy to detect. They tend to leave spots that look like tiny dark marker dots on fabric.
Look for eggshells and eggs, which are about 1 mm. You might also spot the pale yellow skins shed by the nymph as they grow larger.
Despite taking precautions, you could still end up with an infestation. If that does happen, it’s time to call in professional exterminators.
Have you had issues with pest infestation on your Airbnb property? How did you handle it? Let us know in the comments!
Charlie Gray is an enthusiastic writer and a great lover of all pets, especially dogs. He also dabbles in a couple of other activities and loves to paint.