How To Keep Mice Away From Your House


Written by Kyle Glatz

Updated: August 6, 2022

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Mice are one of the most aggravating pests to appear in your house. Mice are quick, great at hiding, and have the potential to deal some serious damage to your home. That’s why you need to know how to keep mice away from your house. Today, we’re going to explore several available methods to keep these annoying little creatures from causing you a bunch of problems.

Let’s start by learning how to identify a mouse problem and then see how you can keep them away from your home.

How to Know If You Have Mice Near Your House

Mouse Poop vs Rat Poop - Rat Poop

Mice leave a lot of droppings in areas they frequent.

©Photo – TMD/

Knowing when to worry about a mouse infestation is important. So, how can you tell if mice are near your home or already inside? For one thing, you will see mouse poop. A lot of it. In particular, you will find mouse droppings anywhere near where food is stored or around their nests. Be careful as you clean it up because mice can transmit diseases to humans.

Speaking of nests, a great way to tell if you have mice in your home or nearby is to look for signs of nests. Mice will use paper products, string, fabric, and a whole host of other materials to make a nest. If you suddenly find that your shop towels in the garage are being plundered and scratched, it could be mice.

People who have pet dogs or pet cats can learn about nearby mice. Both cats and dogs will sniff around certain areas and try to get at them. Cats are especially adept at capturing and killing mice. Obviously, if your cat catches a mouse, there are bound to be more. After all, mice reproduce very quickly.

These are all ways that you can tell if mice are around your home. Once you think there is a problem or if you’re merely trying to prevent one from starting, you can be proactive about mouse infestations.

How to Keep Mice Away from Your House

Humane mouse traps

A safe and humane solution for dealing with unwanted mice.


Many ways exist for you to keep mice away from your house. We’ve identified 5 different ways to help you keep these rodents away from your house. Of course, other ways exist, but these ideas represent a good starting point.

5. Make Sure to Keep Doors and Windows Closed

This may seem like an obvious answer, but a lot of people leave their windows and doors open for extended periods of time. Do you like to keep the garage door wide open while you’re out mowing the lawn? It would take a few seconds for a mouse to sneak into the garage and find its way into the house.

As soon as a mouse sniffs out the possibility of food in your garage or home, it’ll look for a way in. So, cancel their invitation to your house by making keeping doors and windows closed.

4. Use Barrier Methods to Keep Mice at Bay

If you have spotted mice looking for a way in, then try putting down some barrier methods. Spraying peppermint oil around vulnerable parts of your home will keep mice away. Other people swear by putting down cayenne pepper around their house. Both of these scents overwhelm the mouse’s sense of smell and make them back off.

Other barrier methods exist, too. Some people place mouse traps outside of their homes. These can either catch or kill your pests before they cause problems. Other people use mouse bait kits to poison mice before they can get inside or breed. Bleach may not be a good option as a barrier method.

3. Shore Up Your Defenses

mouse in hand

Mice can squeeze into very small spaces

©Sergey Bezgodov/

While we’re on the topic of barriers, let’s talk about physical barriers. If you see any holes or gaps in the outside of your home, seal them off. You can often find holes or gaps near the roof, around attic vents, doors, and windows.

Give the critters no way to get inside and reduce the number of hiding spots they have. Mice do not like to be out in the open because it exposes them to danger. Seal holes with caulk, metal screens, cement, or sheet metal. These are materials that mice will have a hard time getting through.

Shoring up your defenses and creating barriers to entry will reduce the presence of mice in your house.  

2. Minimize the Presence of Large Plants Against Your Home

Mice need places to hide, and a lot of plant life provides them the cover they desire. If you have a large series of plants growing alongside your house, mice can hide in them and work their way inside. Don’t give them the privacy and safety they need to chew their way into your home.

Cut down the plants that are against your home and expose the areas to light. Even if mice do decide to approach your home, they will be doing so under the threat of predators like birds of prey. That might be enough to scare them off from trying to get in. They would certainly prefer to go to another safer location for food.  

1. Seal Up All Food and Clean Up All Leftovers

A family of house mice eating spilled cereal off the floor

If you have one mouse in your house, you need to eliminate it before it leads to an infestation.


Mice are attracted to food and safety. Unfortunately, your home will provide both of those things for them. As a result, you need to make sure they can’t get to any food sources in your home. Make sure you keep your fridge closed and seal up any food in your pantry.

Put your cereal in plastic or glass containers don’t leave opened bags in your pantry without resealing them and look for signs of mice in your pantry every so often. Also, remember that you need to keep your pet food in a safe container, too. Mice have no problem eating dog food, and they will chew through bags to get it.

Now that you know how to keep mice away from your house, you need to evaluate your house. Identify the weak points where mice could enter your house and create barriers to entry. Lock down your food supplies and know the signs of an infestation.

With any luck, you’ll prevent a mouse infestation long before it has time to take root within your house.  

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About the Author

Kyle Glatz is a writer at A-Z-Animals where his primary focus is on geography and mammals. Kyle has been writing for researching and writing about animals and numerous other topics for 10 years, and he holds a Bachelor's Degree in English and Education from Rowan University. A resident of New Jersey, Kyle enjoys reading, writing, and playing video games.

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