How To Prevent Rats From Entering Your Home – 7 Steps

Rodent Guide
Written By Rodent Guide

I believe in treating all creatures with respect. My mission is to ensure everyone understands how to protect their home from rodents without using cruel methods.

A Rat infestation brings a host of problems, none of which you need!

You may have recently had a Rat in your home, or you might be hearing noises in your attic, which may be a Rat. Either way, you need to know how to prevent Rats from entering your home to reduce the chances of an infestation in the future.

In this article, we explain how you can achieve that.

Before you think about preventing Rats from entering your home, you first need to remove the Rats you may already have.

How To Prevent Rats From Entering Your Home – 7 Steps

Prevent Rats from entering your home infographic

Cut Off Entry Points

hole in wall, seal to prevent Rats
Cutting off entry points is key to preventing Rats from entering your home!

This is the most important task you need to do to stop rats from entering your home. Cutting off their entry points! Prevention is better than the cure!

Rats are chancers who usually enter a building when they stumble across the access. A rat will be out in your yard looking for food supplies; if a hole is found, it will enter.

Entry points only need to be big enough to allow a rat to put its head through, and the rest of the body will follow. That is the size of the holes you are looking for.

Please look around your property to identify areas of concern and get them filled with sealant. The trick is to place some wire wool inside the hole while sealing it. Rats do not like chewing through wire wool because it hurts as they chew.

Although rats can chew through many items, they will avoid anything with wire wool simply because it is too painful to chew!

It is not a simple case of checking the property at ground level; you need to check entry points at the roof level.

Clear Up Your Yard

person walking in yard, forest, overgrown
Your yard will offer safe passage to your home if it is not clean and tidy!

As mentioned above, rats usually enter your property when they stumble across an entry point. That means they will not find one if they do not get near your home.

If you do not make your yard attractive to a Rat then it reduces the risk of a Rat taking a stroll through it and finding a hole to your home.

Keep shrubbery under control and cut down any trees that overhang your property. Rats are excellent climbers and may find an entry to your home through the roof. To protect themselves from predators, rats prefer to move undercover at night. If you have limited yard coverage, rats may not take the chance.

Do not store any trash in your yard, but if you need to, ensure it is secured well.

Do Not Leave Food Out

BBQ, cooking meat, attracting Rats
Food is the biggest attraction for rats; always clear up any food!

This is inside and outside your home. If you have been cooking on the BBQ, clean up after yourselves. Food is the biggest attraction for a rat; if they find a source, you will likely get more Rats in your area.

You must also clean up any food inside your home. If you have young children, you are used to finding random pieces of food throughout the house. It would be best if you kept that under control.

Rats hunt for food, removing the temptation will help to prevent Rats from entering your home.

Store Food Correctly

Bird next to bird food container
Store food correctly, or Rats will find it and attempt to enter your home!

Storing food correctly inside your home is extremely important if you are at risk of Rat infestation.

When storing food, use thick plastic or metal containers where possible.

Ultimately, if the rat cannot smell food, it will not try to chew through the container to get to it.

While thick plastic is difficult for a Rat to chew through, it is still possible. The thicker the plastic, the more challenging it will be.

If you store food outside, such as bird food, then ensure you store it correctly. Keep it in an airtight metal container. Better still, store it inside your home to remove the food source from the garden.

While I am on the subject of food outside, if you have a bird feeder, then Rats will see that as a food source and will keep coming back, or even worse, set up home nearby! As Rats are excellent climbers, it is difficult to use a bird feeder without Rats also using it. Even if they cannot get to the bird feeder, it will attract Rats to your yard, which is just asking for trouble.

Set Rat Traps Outside

Rat inside a trap
Set Rat traps outside to catch them before they get to your home!

Rat traps outside will not deter Rats from visiting your yard, but they will help to get rid of the Rats who enter it.

If you stop Rats progressing from your Yard to your home then you are winning!

For the sake of other wildlife, do not use snap traps outside. A better option is to use a rat trap that catches them alive. Perform a regular check on the traps to see if they have caught a rat or something else.

The downside is that you will have to either release the rat somewhere else or kill it yourself.

Set Rat Traps Inside

Mans finger caught in Rat trap
If a rat enters your home, set up some traps to give them a warm welcome!

I know this post is about preventing Rats from entering your home, but sometimes these Rodents can find a way in, despite all of your best efforts.

I always have traps ready in my attic, simply because it is difficult to stop Rats from getting into your home completely.

6 traps are in my loft, ready to tackle any Rat who gets through my defense!

Rats are very conscious of new things and will be hesitant to approach them. Many people hear Rats in their homes and set up traps immediately. While that is a successful way of tackling a Rat problem, it may take a little while for the rat to be confident enough to approach the trap. As mine are all set up, the chances of a rat being caught in one are greatly enhanced.

Do rats learn to avoid traps? They do, so wear gloves to keep your scent off the trap.

Seal The Cavity Walls

How To Prevent Rats From Entering Your Home seal your cavity walls
Your cavity walls offer Rats a covered route through your home. Seal them up to stop the Rats from taking over!

Sealing your cavity walls is expensive, but it will seal off one of the most common places for Rats to use.

Cavity walls offer Rats an excellent, predator-free journey through every part of your home. Sealing your cavity walls will stop Rats from moving freely and safely through your home.

It involves spraying a filler between each wall, and it is expensive because it needs to be completed by a professional. Is it worth the extra cost? It depends on how often Rats invade your home!

It is also worth considering the difficulty of removing a dead Rat from your cavity walls! If a Rat dies within them, getting rid of a dead Rat smell can be very challenging!


If you follow the 7 steps above, you will be more confident that you can prevent rats from entering your home.

Whilst it is a huge challenge to completely remove the chances of a Rat getting into your home, you can move the odds well into your favor.

What you need to do is remove all things that a Rat is attracted to. Always remember that Rats need food, comfort, and to avoid predators. If you consider what a Rat wants, you can remove them.

Good luck!


About the Rodent Guide

I’m an expert in do-it-yourself rodent control. For more than 20 years, I’ve dedicated my life to helping people live harmoniously alongside these critters by sharing rodent control solutions that are effective and kind.

I believe in treating all creatures with respect. My mission is to ensure everyone understands how to protect their home from rodents without using cruel methods.

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