What Attracts Cockroaches To Your Houston Home?

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cockroaches eating an apple in texas home

In the tropical climate of Houston, cockroach infestations are common. When cockroaches get in—and it is likely that they will—it is important that they don't find what they're looking for. The last thing you want is for a cockroach to say, "This looks like a great place to raise a family!" Here are a few of the cockroach species you can expect to see in your Houston home and some things that could make your home more attractive to a visiting roach.

In our Houston service area, we have four cockroaches that are common household pests. They are the German cockroach, American cockroach, Asian cockroach and Oriental cockroach. While there are some subtle differences between them, such as the ability to fly or the likelihood that they will take up permanent residence in your home, they are all attracted to the same things.


  • Moisture — Nothing will draw cockroaches to your home like moisture. If you have a damp foundation perimeter, a moist crawl space, or a basement that is high in humidity, cockroaches will think they have found paradise. These insects prefer environments that are moist.
  • Decaying Organic Matter — Decaying plants in your landscaping, rotting trash in your garbage, a poorly mixed compost heap, dog droppings in your yard, these are all strong attractants for cockroaches. Roaches are the sanitation workers of the animal kingdom. If you have something rotting in your yard, they'll want to stick around.
  • Fermented Smells — Cockroaches will be drawn from a long distance away by fermenting smells such as the smell of trash, exposed recycling (especially beer cans or wine bottles) or used baby diapers. If it stinks to you, it smells wonderful to cockroaches.


While it is not possible to remove every food source cockroaches will feed on inside your home (because they eat glue, book bindings, human hair and more) it is possible to reduce food sources to make the interior of your home less interesting to a roach that is just exploring.

  • Some food sources you should consider protecting or removing:
  • Juice spills. Clean spills up as quickly as possible.
  • Food on plates. If you leave dishes next to the sink or in the sink with a little water on them, cockroaches will love you for it.
  • Consider filling the sink with soapy water and putting your dishes in to soak until you're ready to clean them.
  • Kitchen trash. It is amazing how many food sources a cockroach can find in your trash.
  • Litter boxes. It may sound disgusting but uncovered cat poop is food for cockroaches and roaches are also attracted to the smell of urine. Maintain your litter box to keep cockroaches from getting too interested.
  • Stored foods. If you have food in your cabinets that are stored in paper, cardboard, or thin plastic, cockroaches can get into them.
  • Food can become more interesting to cockroaches when they are past their due dates so be sure to check the dates.
  • Crumbs on carpets. When you bring a sandwich into the living room to enjoy while you watch television, you may leave food for cockroaches along the way. Vacuum regularly to prevent this.
  • Grease. Cockroaches love feeding on grease and fat on the side of your stove. Be sure to do a deep cleaning every once in a while to remove this food source.

Cockroach Control

Resisting cockroaches is all about reducing moisture and preventing rotting smells. But, no matter how much you try to make your home resistant to cockroaches, they can sometimes take root anyway. When they do, they can expose you and everyone living in your home to harmful bacteria, human pathogens, parasitic worms, and allergens. Fortunately, there is something you can do to keep cockroaches out, and it is a whole lot easier than trying to keep things clean. When you invest in residential pest control from Modern Pest Control, you get coverage for a long list of common pests in Houston, including cockroaches.

Pest control in Houston is a vital part of home maintenance and essential for the health of a family. Let our team of highly trained and licensed pest control professionals help you get a program in place to meet your specific needs. We're here to help.

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