Surest Way to Lose a Home Sale: Mice Problems

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Mouse droppings in the corners, along floorboards, or in cupboards are signals of a mouse infestation, and maybe the biggest turn-off to home buyers short of black mold. The common house mouse is one of the most detrimental pests in any home. They can nibble through walls, electric cables, spread disease and wreak havoc on any property.


If you have a listing with signs of mice, you need to make sure that these rodents are removed for good, before the little furry pests cost you a sale.


Here are your options:

  1. Set store-bought traps

Before you place any traps in your house, it is first important that you figure out where the mice are entering your house. Once you’ve found the points where the mice enter your house, you can then set traps around these areas that will hopefully catch the mice. If no entry point is obvious, set several traps, anywhere you find droppings, especially along walls which mice use as transit corridors.

  1. Seal food containers and close trash containers

Mice will usually enter the house because they smell food. If the home is not occupied, make sure that anything a mouse would find edible is removed. If the residents are still in the home, your job is a little tougher. The only way to really prevent new intrusions is to make sure all foodstuffs are in air-tight containers. You can do this by using tupperware containers for any items of food (such as cereal boxes) that usually remain open. Remember, cardboard boxes are no deterrent to a rodent.

Mice will also be drawn to waste food in your trash. Make sure all trash receptacles both inside and outside the property are fully closed and that there is nothing lying around outside the home that would provide either food or shelter for rodents.

  1. Call an exterminator

If the simple steps above are not effective, you may have a more serious problem that requires more extensive intervention. It is possible that the mice have nested inside the property, and that means that your rodent problem is serious. When time is of the essence, and the property needs to be shown right away, you are left with few courses of action short of calling a professional exterminator. These professionals will be able to accurately determine where the mice are entering your house, and if they are nesting, they can address that also. A professional will make the process of getting rid of mice faster and more sure.


Mice are a pest that can damage a house and bring in disease. Add that to the “yuck” factor, and there are few things that will turn off a potential buyer faster than signs of mice in a property. Therefore, if you have noticed mice droppings or have seen a mouse in your listing, it is important you get rid of them for good. Setting up traps, sealing food containers and sealing bins can help stop mice from coming to your house. If you are really struggling with a rodent problem, call an exterminator to ensure that the pests will be removed surely and quickly.



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David Jackson, MBA

Financial lending analyst
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