How Does a Raccoon Get Into my House?

Do you suspect that you’ve got a furry intruder in your attic? Raccoons are sneaky and adaptive little critters, so it’s no wonder they’re nicknamed the ‘Masked Bandit.’ With their strong hand-like paws and sharp claws, they can make their way into your home fairly easily if potential access points are not secured.

Some signs that you may have a raccoon on your property include:

  • Tracks in your yard
  • Open and rummaged trash cans
  • Animal droppings
  • Scratched trees
  • Noises
  • Seeing raccoons

Why My Home?

Man-made structures such as your home are ideal places for raccoons to not only hide from potential predators but brave the elements and protect their young. Your attic provides shelter with an easy way in and out, and the insulation is perfect for creating a soft nest. Chimneys are also quite popular with raccoons because they replicate tree hollows rather well when the vent is closed.

Raccoon Entry Points

Raccoons are agile and strong. They are excellent climbers and have nimble hands with thumb-like digits on their front paws that can grab, claw and tear their way through a variety of surfaces and materials that make up the outer parts of a building, such as:

  • Soffits – On a home’s exterior, soffits are both an aesthetic and functional element. Because they are visible, they add character to a home. Functionally, they protect the rafters from the elements. If soffits are worn, they become an easy target for raccoons looking to find a vulnerable place to break into the attic.
  • Vents – Roof vents and wall vents meant to maintain air flow to reduce the moisture that can build up in an attic or household systems such as dryers are an easy way for raccoons to gain entry.
  • Chimneys – Uncapped chimneys are a common point of entry for raccoons because they have a horizontal smoke shelf convenient for settling down with kits.
  • Roof Returns – This is the part of a roof that comes back to the wall of the house. It’s situated between the end of the roof and a home’s exterior wall. If the roof return is worn or damaged, it becomes an easy place for a raccoon to rip away.
  • Metal Flashing – Flashing is a thin, flat strips of metal used around the perimeter of roofing systems and around protuberances such as the chimney. Its purpose is to keep water away from the seams and joints on the roof, so the water does not enter the attic. Raccoons have the strength and skill to rip flashing out of place in order to enter.
  • Through the Roof – Raccoons are notorious for making their own entryway when none is available. If they’ve identified an attic as the place they want to use for shelter and a nest, they are known to rip off a perfectly intact section of the roof to get inside. They are incredibly cunning and determined and will do whatever it takes to survive the cold winter months and provide a warm den in which to raise their kits.

Professional Inspections

In order to prevent costly damage from a raccoon infestation, you’ll need to act quickly and efficiently. An inspection should be done at once to find any potential or compromised access points into your home and ensure there are no animals in the home before sealing it up. Critter Control®
has been handling wildlife for decades and not only has the experience, but also the expertise to perform a quick, safe, and humane removal of raccoons from your home. Give us a call today at 305-258-3587 for a consultation and home inspection.