September 18, 2019

Damaged Goods | Managing Rodents and Pests at Your Facility

Some people keep rats for pets. Others desperately try to keep their storage facility clear of rodents of any kind. Whether you’re hiring pest control or keeping rat-atouille in a cage, here’s how you (and your tenants) can keep the ‘pesky pests’ from destroying your tenants’ property.

Pesky Pests

When we say pesky pests there’s a number of things we could be discussing.

Termites, bed bugs, cockroaches, ants, and of course, rodents. Since we offer rodent protection in our plans we’ll be focusing on rodents, but the advice you’ll find below applies to all kinds of pests.

Pro’s and the Cons

If you’re at an established facility, more than likely you already have some form of professional pest control. And, unless you were a previous pest control professional it’s unlikely you have the resources and knowledge to handle pest control at your facility.

But perhaps your current vendor isn’t providing satisfactory results, or you’re opening a new facility and starting the look from scratch. 

Here are a few tips on sorting out the pro’s from the cons.


The best price isn’t always the right price. As with anything else, you get what you pay for. The cheapest pest control company may not be as effective.

Find out what services you’ll need. Not every company is created equal and some will provide different kinds of protection. While most of them will have the basics, if your area suffers from a specific rodent, you’ll want to ensure the company you’re looking at has experience in dealing with that breed. 

Weight the services offered, price, and reviews. The best advice we’ve seen is to look at the mid-range reviews, they are usually the most honest and can help you see the positives and negatives of the company.

What YOU Can Do

As an owner/operator/manager there are a handful of ways you can help make your facility a little less desirable to rodents. 

  1. Get professional service – we know, it’s obvious, but sometimes the obvious needs to be said.
  2. Check traps regularly – a full trap can attract more rodents. Make sure you know where the traps are being laid and add it as a checklist on your daily rounds.
  3. Trim landscaping – whether you’re hiring a landscaping company or not, be sure that any vegetation that is next to a building has been trimmed away from the building.
  4. Empty dumpsters frequently – there’s a reason they’re called ‘trash pandas’. Raccoons – and rodents – love trash.
  5. Sell rodent-proof merchandise – plastic containers, furniture covers, and more help tenants keep their units protected.
  6. Know the signs – check for signs of a rodent infestation on a regular basis. Look for chewed holes (no matter how small) droppings, and scratches for a start.
  7. Peppermint oil – Use cleaners with peppermint essential oils as a base, most pests don’t like the smell of peppermint.

Rodent Control for Tenants

Don’t forget, your tenants’ ability to contribute. It’s already well known that food storage is a no-no, but there are a multitude of ways your tenants can help the fight against rodents and pests. Pass these 11 tips to your tenants:

  1. Plastic totes – we cannot emphasize the benefits of using a non-organic container enough. These protect against rodents, mold, liquid damage and more.
  2. Disinfect – clean your unit with disinfectant before entering and during each visit.
  3. Don’t store food – if it’s not illegal, it’s probably against lease policy anyway. 
  4. Use furniture coverings – for any fabric-based material, furniture or mattresses, or anything else, make sure you’ve got it covered.
  5. Elevation – put your property on pallets and keep them elevated, the air below helps keep them from attracting rodents
  6. Peppermint oil – Rodents and bugs alike can’t stand peppermint oil. Soak a handful of cotton balls in peppermint oil and place them in ideal locations such as beside the entrance and near any cracks or corners in the unit.
  7. Pest deterrent – if peppermint oil isn’t strong enough, or if you’re extra cautious spray pest deterrent along the perimeter of the unit.
  8. Traps – Place rodent traps next to any holes, cracks, corners or entrances. Just make sure they’re in a safe place where humans won’t be affected.
  9. Frequent checks – the best way to stay ahead of an infestation is to keep your eye out for one. Don’t go too long between visits. Once a month is the standard recommendation.
  10. Cedar chips – cedar is a natural pest deterrent, filling stored furniture with cedar chips helps prevent them from smelling tasty to rodents and pests.
  11. Purchase TPP – Having a protection plan like ours that includes rodent damage as a protected incident can provide the extra peace of mind in case something does happen.

Rodent-free worry-free

There’s no doubt that rodents impact all storage facilities, no matter how well-kept. The good news is, there are options for both owners and tenants to help prevent issues and address infestations before they become too damaging. And when all else fails, there’s TPP. We protect tenants’ property in case an infestation does occur. And that’s not all. We’ve got a whole list of unexpected disasters and damages that we pay the replacement costs for your tenants. Help your tenants prevent the unexpected, and let us protect them when all else fails.

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