To keep rats away from a property, keep the property well maintained, eliminate food and water sources, and seal cracks and crevices with rat-proof material. Eradicating rats requires consistent efforts.
- Clean the property
Mow lawns frequently to eliminate tall grass, and keep other items, such as stacks of firewood, away from the home and off of the ground whenever possible. Keep areas under and around pipes and other outdoor features clean and free of grass or other debris that may offer the rats a place to hide. Ivy and other vines should be removed away from the sides of buildings, and bushes should be trimmed frequently.
- Remove food and water sources
Store garbage in containers with tight-fitting lids, and remove pet food immediately after the animal has finished eating. Rats also eat birdseed and scraps, such as scraps in compost. Install squirrel-proof bird feeders, and store compost in a lidded container. Do not allow standing water, including water in birdbaths, to remain on the property, and repair water leaks immediately.
- Seal entrances
Seal all holes that are larger than 1 inch in diameter with steel wool or another strong substance. Because rats can climb, it is necessary to examine upper floors of the home for potential entrances.