Why Do Rats Nest in Attics?

Why Do Rats Nest in Attics

It is late at night. You are just settling down to go to sleep. The lights are out and everyone is in their beds. The night is blissfully quiet.

Then you hear them above your head.

The little scratches and clicks of a rodent which has plagued mankind for centuries – the rat.

So much for pleasant dreams.

This begs a simple question. Why do rats love our homes and, in particular, our attics? The answers really aren’t all that different from the reasons why we love our homes.


Rats are tough creatures. Despite humans’ best efforts we’ve never been able to eradicate the rat population, even though they are known to carry a wide variety of parasites, viruses and bacteria that are dangerous to human health. Rats, after all, brought Europe the Black Death which wiped out more than 50 percent of the population between 1348 and 1350 – as many as 200 million people. Humans even bred dog species such as the Rat Terrier for the sole purpose of hunting down these rodents, but with little success.

Still, a rat is an animal, which means there are other animals which will prey on it. Owls and snakes certainly come to mind. As their prey, the rat seeks safety: a place to sleep, live, breed and get on with their lives without fear. Can you think of a safer place, with no owls or snakes to worry about, than the attic of your home?


Why attics in particular? The answer is simple. Attics are remote locations and are usually easy for rodents to get into. Rats are natural climbers. They can climb up stucco, wires, drain pipes and just about anything that is typically attached to the side of a home.

Rats’ bodies are also highly flexible. They can squeeze through vent openings, or small holes where pipes and wires enter a home, without any problem at all. They also don’t give up if the hole isn’t big enough initially. They just start chewing on the edges the hole to make it big enough for them to eventually squeeze through.

Put simply, most homes in San Diego are rife with opportunities for rats to get into their attics and walls. Once they’re in “rat paradise,” you can expect them to put down roots and get on with the task of breeding. This is not good news for you as the owner of their new homestead.


There’s a more pragmatic reason for rats to be fans of attics: comfort. Attics, particularly in our part of the country, are warm. They have plenty of crawl spaces in which to roam around. There’s lots of material they can use to build nests. And attics are rarely visited by humans or any other intruders. A rat couldn’t find a much more comfortable place to settle in.

The attic of the average San Diego home provides safety, opportunity and comfort in spades. If you suspect rats have moved into your attic, contact us to arrange an inspection before a few rats become hundreds.

Free Estimate

Our experienced technicians will provide a free written recommendation detailing the proper actions needed to restore your home to a safe and healthy environment. When you need attic cleanup, crawl space cleanup, rodent proofing, decontamination, insulation removal or insulation replacement in San Diego call Attic Construction Inc at 858-609-8118.

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