Before you reach for poisonous products, try any of these natural ways to control pests and protect your home from critters…

Pests are more than annoying – some are known health hazards and can damage your property. Some can literally leave their mark in the form of gnawed furniture, skirting, floorboards and wiring.

“You have invested, as your finances would permit, a very large portion of your life’s savings in protecting your dream home, and don’t want it destroyed by little critters,” says Craig Hutchison, CEO Engel & Völkers Southern Africa.

If you have an infestation of pests, you are not alone.

“At some point, virtually every home experiences some type of pest problem, even the cleanest, most well-kept properties can face invasion,” says Hutchison.

WIN a R 2,000 Woolworths Voucher

Subscribe to our Free Daily All4Women Newsletter to enter

Here are a few natural ways to protect your home from pests…

  1. Cucumber peels – to send ants packing, sprinkle cucumber peels at the ants’ entrance points
  2. Mint leaves – peppermint and spearmint are natural insect deterrents, especially for ants and aphids. Plant mint around your home to see a noticeable drop in these pest populations.
  3. All-natural sprays – mix water with isopropyl alcohol, concentrated garlic oil, salt or boiled elder leaves for a spray on indoor and outdoor plants to help control infestations.
  4. Baking soda and sugar mix baking soda with powdered sugar and sprinkle it around problem areas to deal with cockroaches. The sugar attracts the pests and the baking soda kills them.
  5. Eucalyptus oil – drop this essential oil on a cloth and place near areas of infestation of flies and moths.
  6. Soapy water mix water and soap in a spray bottle. The soap component breaks down a bug’s waxy exoskeleton, allowing the water in to affectively drown the bug.
  7. Cedar oil this oil is lethal to termites but totally non-toxic, organic and can be used on any wood structure.
  8. Citrus juice citrus scents help repel fleas, ants, roaches, lice, nits and flies. Mix lemon juice and water in a spray bottle and add essential oils like lemongrass (to deter fleas, ticks, mosquitoes and flies), lavender (to get rid of fleas, ticks, flies, lice, nits, silverfish, mosquitoes and moths) or tea tree oil (to fend off fleas and flies).