Our phone lines have been blowing up with requests from residents and property managers alike looking for ant control services. Black ants, sometimes called pavement ants, are extremely common during spring and summer throughout the Midwest. When the warm weather (finally) shows up, so do ants. This is typical for most plants and animals that hibernate or remain dormant during the winter. It’s just that some species are, well, more of a nuisance than others.
Main Cause of Ants in Apartments
Once ants find their way inside your apartment complex, there are a few common things that will make them want to stay besides escaping the heat outside. Food residue is a big reason ants will infest homes, and why they are often found in the kitchens as opposed to other places in the units. Foods that ants enjoy are starches, sugary foods and greasy foods. Even pet food can attract them. They will then bring the food remnants they find back to their colony.
Inadequate, or infrequent, garbage disposal can also be a major draw for ants. Garbage bags are easy for ants to break through, and keeping garbage inside a bin won’t necessarily stop them – they’ll find a way in. Tenants should replace garbage bags often, and avoid leaving garbage bags on the floor for extended periods of time.
Nests built inside your apartment building may also explain why you are finding ants. It doesn’t happen often, but ants can nest inside if a problems goes untreated for a long period or isn’t handled by a professional. Certain materials inside you apartment structure, like wet or rotten wood, can be ideal conditions for ants to build nests.
Keep Tenants Informed
If your tenants are complaining about ants inside, take their complaints seriously before a problem gets out of control. There are also measures they can take to make their apartment less attractive to ants, so use your pest management company as a resource for identifying specific issues in your property, but see below for additional tips.
Your Tenant’s Checklist:
- Keep food sealed
- Clean up spills on floors and tables right away
- Regularly vacuum and sweep
- Take out your trash daily
- Empty and clean pet’s food dishes often
If multiple tenants are complaining about ants, make sure to notify others of the issue and share ways to keep them from wandering into other apartments. Consider leaving a notice in common areas, elevators or even under doors with suggestions on how tenants can help alleviate an ant problem. Creating this list also lets your tenants know that you’re on top of things, and care about their comfort and well-being.
DIY Apartment Ant Control
Some will tell you that things like over-the counter products, coffee grounds, vinegar, dish soap and plenty of other household items can rid you of ants. This is not going to solve the ant problem and may not even remedy a symptom. The unfortunate truth is that you can’t do a ton to stop ants completely using control methods indoors. The main issues is how and where they are coming from in the first place – outside.
This involves taking control measures outside of the apartment complex and identifying where ants are coming from. Typically this means a pest professional needs to take a look around the outside of your building and treat the perimeter, preventing ants at the beginning.
Make sure that the details of pest management on your property are laid out in your leasing information. Even if this is the tenants’ responsibility, you should strongly consider getting a professional treatment on the perimeter of the building and in common areas. It usually isn’t the tenants’ fault that ants are getting in in the first place, so be sensitive to this when tenants are confused as to why they have ants.
Landlords and property managers often feel like a middleman when it comes to pest control. A tenant complains, and as a result property managers are pressured to get a pest technician out there immediately. We understand that a lot rides on the happiness of your tenants, that’s why we make it our mission to be there either the same or next day. You can count on us.
Seek Professional Help
At Wil-Kil, we get client requests like this all year long. We are ready to help you resolve your ant problem, so contact us today!