'Don't wait until it's too late': The imminent problem threatening to overrun households

Australians are bearing down for what is set to be a colossal cockroach season with the recent combination of wet and hot weather creating optimal conditions for the creepy crawlies.

Millions of the critters are set to swarm homes this summer, especially in Sydney which already has an unsanitary reputation for being a crowd-favourite breeding ground for roaches.

In preparation for the imminent influx of the six-legged insects, residents should be taking steps to avoid their homes becoming completely overrun, ABC Pest Control Sydney Warren Bailey director told Yahoo News Australia.

Cockroaches in kitchen as pest controller warns about millions swarming Australia this summer.
Your kitchen could look like this if you don't clean up properly. Source: File/Getty Images

“In Sydney, a lot of people wait until it’s too late to call in professional help. But really they need to be taking preventative measures before it gets to that point,” Mr Bailey said.

Every year Mr Bailey received a huge surge in calls for help from December through until March the following year, and he was expecting much the same this season, especially once the rain stops.

“We’re definitely going to be getting a lot this season, there’s been a lot of rain and a lot of heat.”

How to prevent a cockroach infestation?

The best thing people can do to stay on top of the number of cockroaches in their home is to maintain a high level of hygiene and not neglect specific areas of the house like the bathroom and kitchen.

“Hygiene is the biggest thing for both restaurants and people’s homes. It’s incredibly important to keep things clean,” Mr Bailey said.

Kitchen sink with a cockroach on a tap as Australia prepares for millions of the insects this summer.
A cockroach on a kitchen tap, one of many places they like to hang out. Source: File/Getty Images

He advised people to pull their fridge away from the wall every couple of months and give the area a thorough clean out.

Mr Bailey also encouraged people living in high-rise apartment blocks to try their best to block entry points if they were concerned about another unit’s inhabitants seeping into their home.

How do you get rid of roaches?

Mr Bailey urged people not to let their problem get out of control before they called in professional help.

He said it was crucial that properties were treated regularly - as often as every three to four months - to ensure their house didn’t become home to too many unwelcome guests.

Mr Bailey said cockroach exterminating products people could buy over the counter were largely ineffective, and they would be better off going straight for some heavy duty help.

What attracts cockroaches to your home?

Cockroaches are most drawn to areas with moisture and warmth, making the bathroom hot property as well as areas beneath the kitchen sink.

Reusable bags, commonly purchased from Aldi, Coles and Woolworths, stored under the sink were attractive spots for cockroaches to rest, Mr Bailey said.

While he had yet to uncover any scientific theory connecting the recyclable plastic with the bugs, he had noticed a common theme in many people’s homes since major retailers phased out single-use bags.

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