Signs Your Office has Pests

There are few things worse than realizing your office has a pest infestation. We’re not talking about coworkers who take loud personal calls at their desk or who steal all of your pens, either. We mean real pests. The kinds of bugs and vermin that not only cause a mess but could even be carrying germs and diseases.

Pests in your home are bad enough, but having them in your facilities is far worse. An infestation easily brings down employee morale, as it indicates that you don’t value the building’s cleanliness or standards of health. It certainly won’t do much to impress potential clients if they find mouse droppings. Worst of all, if not attended to promptly, a pest problem could get your facility shut down.

Tempting as it might be to wait and see if the pests go away on their own, it’s unlikely that they will. The only sure way to deal with an infestation is to act quickly. This is why you need to know how to spot an infestation in your office, how to take care of it, and how to avoid it happening again in the future.

Common Massachusetts Pests

One of the first steps in avoiding an infestation is knowing what kinds of pests might potentially be in your area. Massachusetts has a fair number of pests ready to sneak into your facilities and make them their home, so be sure to stay on the lookout for the following critters.


While ants usually remain dormant during the winter months, once spring comes around they’ll be foraging for food, potentially starting with your break room or kitchen area. While they aren’t known to spread illness, they can infest your food and potentially damage your building’s walls and floors.

Bed Bugs

Contrary to the name, bed bugs aren’t solely found in beds. In fact, they’re found just about anywhere they can find their favorite food – human blood. Bed bug bites are itchy and uncomfortable, and can be a bigger issue for anyone who suffers from anemia. They also easily hitch rides on clothing or in the upholstery of used furniture, so if your office buys desk chairs second-hand, you’ll want to ensure they’re thoroughly cleaned before they’re brought inside. 


Cockroaches are surprisingly common in Massachusetts, and their shed skin and excrement have been linked to asthma and other allergy issues. Even more concerning, cockroaches also carry bacteria and pathogens that allow them to spread things like salmonellosis, gastroenteritis, dysentery, and E. Coli.


Massachusetts has seen a rat population increase over recent years, for reasons ranging from milder winters to a growing suburban population. Rats are especially important to remove as quickly as possible due to the potential damage they can do the wiring of your building. Chewed up wires not only cause lighting and internet problems, but they can become a fire hazard, too.


Spotting Pests

Now that you know what pests to look for, it’s time to start searching for signs of an infestation. If you don’t clean your office regularly, these signs are typically easy to spot, though that lack of cleaning is also likely what brought them inside in the first place.

Creature Sightings

Most pests and vermin are nocturnal, so actually spotting them in-person can be difficult. You might open a closet door and catch one off guard, or perhaps catch one on camera. While this will give you definitive proof that your building is infested, it requires timing and luck.

Droppings & Sheddings

A very clear sign that you have a pest problem is when you find pest excrement or shed exoskeletons in your building. Droppings can vary in size depending on what animal it came from, but they’re usually darker in color and often pellet-shaped. As for exoskeletons, these also vary in size depending on what they came from but can often be an even clearer clue than droppings regarding what exactly has infested your building.

Chewed Furniture and Food

Teeth marks on furniture are a very big indicator that something is living in your office. This could range from the upholstery of the chairs to the wooden legs of the desks. Even more damning are clear signs of chewing in the kitchen. If you open up the break room cupboard and see a cracker box has teeth marks, you can be certain that rodents have been at it recently. Be sure to throw out any food that the pests have eaten to ensure no one ingests germs or excrement that may have been left behind.

Eggs & Larva

When looking for pests, you’ll want to keep your eyes peeled for any eggs or larvae. After all, those mean that even if you kill the current infestation of pests, another wave isn’t far behind.

How to Get Rid of Pests

Step one is to call in the professionals. You may think you can take care of the matter on your own to save costs, but the fact is, it’s not worth the risk. Bad DIY pest control jobs can at best just move the infestation someplace else with the likelihood that they’ll come back, and at worst be totally ineffective. So it’s best to hire a proper, certified pest control company that can completely eliminate the problem.

Step two is to hire a good commercial cleaning company to not only take care of any mess left behind, like nest remains, dead bugs, and droppings. You’ll also want the cleaning service to do a thorough sanitation of all of your building’s surfaces, furniture, and rooms that may have come in contact with the pests to avoid any spread of diseases.

Step three is to schedule regular building cleanings and inspections. One of the reasons most pests move into a building is because there’s a regular food source, like crumbs to whole meals left in uncovered trash cans. Having janitorial or day porter services to vacuum, take out the trash, and wash floors will discourage pests from moving in again.

A thoroughly cleaned, sanitized space is far less appealing to vermin looking to move in than a messy office. A good, regular cleaning service can prevent a potentially costly pest infestation, so it’s better to call S.J. Services sooner rather than later to keep the pests at bay.