New York City dwellers often agree that the city is regularly confronted with issues stemming from rodent invasions. Especially mice pose a significant problem, making their habitats in various places including restaurants, building sites, and residential areas like apartments and homes. These small nuisances can cause a wide range of problems and quickly take over any area they enter.

An average of 15% of NYC households have reported having a mice infestation. However, whether or not mice are common in your apartment will depend mainly on the part of the city you reside in, the type of building, the age of the building, which floors your apartment is on, etc. Mice are common in NYC apartments close to restaurants and construction sites, old pre-war buildings, ground-floor flats, etc.

Let’s find out why mice are common in NYC apartments.

Are Mice Common in NYC Apartments

Why are mice common in NYC apartments?

NYC has a mice problem and many apartments are susceptible to mice infestations. There are many reasons why mice are common in NYC apartments. If your apartment fits any of these factors it can indicate a future problem with rodents like mice. They include;

1. Location of the apartment

Apartments close to places with lots of human traffic and waste disposal have higher chances of having mice. Places like restaurants, construction sites, parks, etc usually harbor a lot of mice. Apartments close to these locations have more mice infestations than those farther away.

2. Age of the building

Older buildings tend to have more mice than newer buildings, especially pre-war buildings in NYC. This is because pre-war buildings usually have a lot of crevices, holes, old pipes, etc. This allows rats easy access and optimal hiding spaces thereby increasing the chances of mice infestations. Newer buildings are not as liable to mice infestations as most do not have as many crevices and openings for mice to crawl in.

3. The level of sanitation

Because NYC is very overcrowded, many places usually have poor sanitation. Poor waste disposal, stagnant water in gutters, clutter, etc. This attracts rodents as it provides food and shelter for them. If you live in an apartment building where the neighbors practice poor sanitation, there’s a high chance of mice infestation.

4. Which floor your apartment is on

In multi-level apartment buildings, ground-floor and first-floor apartments are usually the most susceptible to mice. This is because they are closer to the ground and have easier access to mice than higher apartments. If you reside in a neighborhood liable to mice infestations, select an apartment on a high floor.

How can I mouse-proof my NYC apartment?

If you live in an apartment that is susceptible to mice, preventative pest control methods can help to ensure that you keep mice away from your apartment. There are many ways to mouse-proof your NYC apartment thereby reducing the chances of a mice infestation. They include;

1. Use of mice repellents

Mice repellents are products with repelling qualities for mice. These products make use of smells that keep mice away to mouse-proof the apartment. There are two types of mouse repellents;

  1. Natural mice repellents; these repellents make use of natural products to repel mice. Peppermint and clover smells are very good repellents for mice and are used in making natural mice repellents. Peppermint and clover essential oils can also be used.
  2. Chemical mice repellents; these mice repellents make use of chemicals to repel mice. They usually come in aerosol cans as a spray. They can be found in local stores and are usually more effective. However, they can be toxic if ingested by pets and small children.

2. Store foods in canisters or airtight containers

Mice are usually drawn to apartments that offer food and scraps. You can prevent mice infestations by storing foods like rice, beans, dry grains, flour, etc in airtight canisters.

Also, ensure to put any leftover foods in airtight containers and store them in the refrigerator. This will ensure that any stray mice will not find food in your apartment. When there is no food for the mice, they will usually move on to better pastures.

3. Proper waste disposal

If you dispose of your waste properly, it will reduce the chances of a mice infestation. Decomposable waste like food scraps should be sealed before disposal so they do not attract mice. This is because when the food scraps begin to decay, they produce a stench that attracts mice. These mice can then find their way into your apartment in no time.

How to get rid of mice in NYC apartments?

Dealing with mice in your apartment can be very hard to do on your own. Exterminators use a variety of techniques to eliminate mice like trapping, baiting and deterrents. 

Here are a few steps you can use to get rid of mice in NYC apartments;

How to get rid of mice in NYC apartments

1. Find their entry and hiding spots

Mice usually crawl into apartments using small holes, openings, and crevices in the walls of the apartment. Try to find their entry and hiding spots and seal them up. You can use cement, plaster, or wood to seal up these openings.

This ensures that more mice do not have access to the apartment and that any pest control will get rid of the mice hiding inside the apartment.

2. Better sanitation

Mice love apartments with low levels of sanitation. This is because there are usually scraps left for them to feed on and clutter for them to hide. If you are dealing with a mice infestation, you might want to reevaluate the level of sanitation for your apartment.

Make sure to dispose of waste every night, do not leave dirty dishes in the sink, and clear up any clutter in the apartment. By doing this you will reduce the availability of food and shelter your apartment provides to the mice.

3. Inform your landlord or apartment manager

In NYC, the landlords are responsible for pest control. If you notice mice in or around your apartment, you should inform your landlord. The landlord must then call pest control to handle the situation.

If your landlord does not respond within a reasonable time frame or refuses responsibility, you can withhold rent or deduct from the rent to hire an exterminator. The landlord cannot evict you for this if you have informed them before the action. You can sue the landlord if they provide you with an eviction notice.

Can I break my lease due to mice in NYC?

In NYC, landlords are required by law to provide their tenants with clean and habitable apartments that are mold-free and pest-free. This allows tenants to break their lease if the landlord does not keep to his end of the deal. However, there are other steps tenants can take before breaking the lease.

After adequate and frequent notice to the landlord, they are to respond within a reasonable amount of time. If the landlord hasn’t responded after this, tenants can either choose to hire a pest control service and deduct the cost from their rent or completely withhold rent for the affected periods. Make sure to save the rent money withheld in case there is a legal tussle and you’re asked to reimburse the landlord.

Scott Williams
Author: Scott Williams - Scott is a pest control expert and has worked in the industry for over 20 years, most recently in NYC, where he runs a pest control business. Scott loves to write articles, share his knowledge on exterminator services, and advise on safe DIY method.