Getting rid of cockroaches that are coming from your neighbors isn’t always easy. In fact, it can not only be challenging from a pest control perspective, but it can also be a bit awkward!
This guide will teach you how to deal with roaches that keep coming into your home from your neighbors quickly and efficiently.
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Can Cockroaches Come From My Next Door Neighbor?
You probably go to great lengths to keep your home as pest-free as possible. But that might not be possible depending on the kind of people living around you. What’s worse is that it might be hard to tell which neighbor cockroaches are coming from.
Educated guesses are usually correct with dilapidated homes in desperate need of repair, or untidy apartments, but roaches don’t discriminate! Contrary to popular belief, cockroach problems don’t automatically mean a home is filthy.
These insects require food, water, warmth, and shelter. In most cases, they enter homes because of an easy supply of food and water. Something as simple as a leaking faucet or food stuck in your kitchen drain can cause trouble.
But is it possible for cockroaches to come from your next door neighbor?
Unfortunately, it is possible! And it happens more often than most people realize.
You’re most likely to experience this unique issue if you live in close proximity to other people. More specifically, it’s prevalent in apartment communities where units often share walls. Those residing in duplexes and townhouses can encounter this problem, too.
Infestations are possible even if you live in detached units. If the units are close enough, cockroaches can and will migrate!
How Does This Happen?
Cockroaches are some of the most resilient household pests. That’s why they become such massive headaches! While rodents need a decent amount of physical space to enter your building, that’s not the case with roaches.
They can flatten their exoskeletons, splay their legs, and wriggle through the tiniest cracks and voids. It doesn’t take much room at all! Roaches will take full advantage of any opening they can to get through.
Worse, they don’t know the difference between separate units. If you share walls with your neighbor, it’s no different than moving from one room to the next. And despite what some believe, roaches don’t just move horizontally.
Infestations aren’t limited to specific floors. You can get roaches from downstairs neighbors, upstairs neighbors, and even those living down the hall!
Roaches can spread surprisingly quickly. As mentioned earlier, it’s not necessarily filth that’s attracting them. You can have a spotless home and still have roaches.
The issue is access to food, water, and shelter. If you have the means to sustain life in your home, cockroaches will follow.
That’s usually how they go from one home to the next. The roaches might start at your neighbor’s house before the population grows beyond what the home can support. So, the cockroaches migrate elsewhere to look for more food and water.
Your home is the closest structure to their original home, so it’s an easy migration. If your domain has easy access to food and water, it’s only a matter of time before the roaches discover that fact and make a move.
Then, it’s only a matter of finding a void or hole to gain access. Roaches can get through cracks in floorboards, move up balcony supports, through gaps in shared walls, and small openings around windows or doors. They can also travel through air conditioning systems, plumbing, and sewer drains.
Once cockroaches have come from your neighbor, it won’t be long until you have a sizable infestation on your hands. Roaches reproduce quickly. As long as the food, water, and shelter are there to sustain life, numbers will grow until you have a significant pest problem.
How To Get Rid of Roaches Coming from Neighbors
It can be incredibly frustrating to have roaches coming from your neighbors, but it’s not the end of the world. You can do many things to address the infestation, get rid of the critters, and protect your home moving forward. You shouldn’t need to sacrifice your comfort, health, and well-being because of a neighbor’s pest problem.
Here’s what you should do.
1. Seal All Possible Entry Points
If you want to get rid of roaches coming from your neighbors, the first thing you should do is give your home a thorough inspection. The goal here is to find all possible access points. Remember that cockroaches can get in just about anywhere!
Even the tiniest crack shouldn’t be overlooked.
Seal up any potential entry point for these insects. Don’t be afraid to be extra cautious! Whether it’s a small crack under an ill-fitted window or a void on your outside faucet, close it up!
All-purpose caulk is a great option here. You can easily spread a dollop into any potential access point you see. Caulk is available in many colors, and you can also find waterproof sealants. Find the products that work for your home and use them liberally to create an impenetrable shell!
There’s a good chance you won’t find every spot that roaches take advantage of when invading your home. If it’s in your budget, you can try hiring an inspector or handyperson to get a closer look.
2. Address All Food and Water Sources
Cockroaches will come from your neighbor when they’re looking for food and water in order to survive. One of the best things you can do to prevent an infestation is to remove those sources. If you already have a roach problem, this tip can also deprive those pests of sustenance, getting rid of them.
Pick up all the food crumbs and make a habit of wiping down every surface in your kitchen regularly. Sweep up messes, clean counters, and pick up anything you might drop.
It’s also wise to limit where you eat food. If you’re keen on snacking in your bedroom or living room, it may be time to stop. Keep food in your kitchen and dining room to limit how many places you drop crumbs and attract cockroaches.
When it comes to water, many homeowners get roaches because of an unknown leak. Examine all water sources and make sure that there are no dripping water lines. Go into your basement, inspect all bathrooms, and address issues you might find.
3. Invest In Airtight Food Containers
There are more sources of food for roaches beyond the crumbs you drop. Think about your pantry! You may have opened bags of chips, flour containers, boxes of cookies, etc.
Instead of letting those items attract roaches from your neighbors home, consider buying airtight containers to store your food. These containers will prevent smells from wafting through the air. Additionally, they create an impossible barrier that roaches can’t get through.
These containers can be a significant investment. But trust us: They’re worth it to keep roaches out!
Purchase containers that have a rubber seal. That’s a critical detail. Anything without a rubber seal could still bring in roaches from your neighbors, even if you think that they’re closed tight.
4. Use Diatomaceous Earth
Consider using all-natural pest killers to get rid of roaches coming from your neighbors. Diatomaceous earth is an excellent all-purpose product you can quickly get at your local home improvement store.
The product comes in a powder form that doesn’t cause harm on contact. Be careful about accidental inhalation, but the product is safe for humans. But to roaches, it’s a natural killer!
Diatomaceous earth is the fossilized remains of diatoms. After crushing up the silica-infused skeletons, you’re left with a super-abrasive material. Upon contact, it dehydrates and kills most insects.
Sprinkle some of the diatomaceous earth around known hiding spots and entrance points. You don’t need a lot. A fine layer over the floor is more than enough.
Walking on the powder will cause them to experience life-threatening injuries and slowly die off.
5. Use Natural Repellents
If you don’t want to use diatomaceous earth, you can also try natural repellents that cockroaches hate. There are many oils that these pests can’t stand.
Some good options include:
Create a dilution with clean water, and you have a potent repellent spray. Apply the solution around drains, windows, doors, and other entrance points. Most roaches that have come from your neighbors will avoid the scents and move somewhere else.
6. Set Up Bait Traps
Another way to get rid of roaches coming from neighbors is to set up traps. Commercial traps are available. However, they do include chemicals and other potentially dangerous pesticides.
Those products are efficient, but you might want to exercise caution if you have children and pets in the home.
Natural solutions are available, too. For example, mixing borax with peanut butter is a popular DIY roach bait.
Whatever you choose, these traps work by poisoning the insect. The bait appears like safe food, but it’s laced with lethal toxins that slowly attack the nervous system of the roach.
It’s slow-acting, so roaches will bring the bait into the nest and allow others to eat it. By the time the effects kick in and bugs start dying, the bait has already spread throughout the nest.
7. Contact A Professional Pest Exterminator
If all else fails, don’t hesitate to contact an exterminator.
Cockroach problems can get out of hand quickly. An exterminator can take care of the issue swiftly and effectively, stopping the infestation before it snowballs into a disgusting mess.
There’s always a chance that roaches can come back. You have no control over what your neighbor does, so it’s wise to adopt some of the other tricks we covered to protect your home in the future.
What Else Can You Do?
The biggest issue with roaches coming from your neighbors is that you don’t have control over what they do or how they address the issue. You can use our tips to make your home roach-free, but the roaches will remain in the area unless the neighbor does their part to fix the issue.
Remember: All it takes is one point of entry. Once these pests find it, an infestation is possible.
So, what can you do? It can feel awkward but consider broaching the topic with your neighbor.
Before you do that, take a deep breath and get into the right mindset. The last thing you want to do is go to your neighbor feeling angry. A negative interaction will only escalate the situation and create bad blood.
You will have to live next to your neighbor regardless of what comes of the roach issue. Resist the urge to burn any bridges and cause a long-lasting feud!
Be kind and respectful. Don’t forget that roach issues aren’t always a product of filth or a sign of a poorly kept home. Avoid coming at this situation with a condescending, rude, or negative tone.
People are more likely to work with others if you broach the topic in a kind and respectful manner.
Talk about the situation and let the neighbor know that the roaches have come into your home. Make them aware of the effect it has on you and your family. There’s a good chance that they’re experiencing issues, too.
Come at the situation from a place of empathy and understanding. If you do that, you can work with your neighbor to resolve the problem!
Discuss your options. The best solution might be to split the cost of an exterminator. You can also suggest they hire an inspector to find the root of the problem.
It doesn’t have to be a nightmare situation! Talk it out and work as a unit to resolve this roach issue.
If you’re renting a place and aren’t comfortable talking to your neighbor directly, you can speak with your landlord. Rented spaces come with certain expectations. Your landlord is responsible for providing a safe and sanitary home to live in.
It’s the law!
As long as you can prove that your roach problem isn’t caused by you alone, your landlord should be the one to fix it. Reasonable landlords will pay extermination fees and talk to your neighbor to deal with the problem. It’s a much more straightforward approach that can help you avoid drama.
Speaking of drama, what happens if your neighbor doesn’t want to work with you about this roach issue? Can you sue?
Technically, you can sue. But whether or not you succeed is hit or miss. It’s challenging to prove that the roaches came from your neighbor. As a result, many of those suits lose.
If you plan on taking legal action, do your due diligence. Gather as much evidence as you can. Think about hiring inspectors, getting statements that you’re not the source of the roaches, etc.
You can send a demand letter if your neighbor refuses to listen and roaches keep coming into your home. We recommend going to a lawyer for this step. Random letters you type up on your own can make matters worse.
Let a lawyer represent you. They can draft a formal demand that includes an arbitration notice, documented evidence, expectations, and possible legal consequences if they don’t comply. In most cases, the letter is more than enough to encourage neighbors to take action.
It won’t help your relationship, so trying to work with your neighbor is always better than jumping to legal action. But that option is there if necessary.
Now that you know how to get rid of roaches coming from your neighbors, it’s time to pick the approach that works for you. Assess your situation and determine if it’s something you can handle on your own, or if you’ll need to speak with them.
Don’t worry, you’ll figure it out!