Roaches are GROSS. Besides being just plain ugly, they carry diseases.
Whether you spot one or two occasionally or see an army of them scatter like crazy when you hit the kitchen light in the morning, it’s a problem. They can get into everything.
Nothing’s off-limits—not your favorite coffee mug, microwave, or electronics.
Roaches show up for different reasons. Something in your place is highly attracting them. They love dirty homes.
Roaches get excited when they come across food that’s been left out on the counter, dirty dishes in the sink, and crumbs on the floor. What else entices them? Moisture. Warmth. Shelter.
Everything your apartment has, they love.
But having a clean apartment won’t guarantee that you’ll live a roach-free existence. They can hitch a ride on boxes, furniture, and backpacks.
Then there’s the sneaky approach—getting in through vents, cracks, and pipes. Not to worry though. There are plenty of products designed to cure you of your roach problem.
Sprays, powders, gels, you name it, it’s out there. But with so many options flooding the market how do you know which one to pick?
You need a product that’s fast-acting, powerful, and non-toxic. We’ve done the heavy lifting by selecting ten of the best ones to help you take back your apartment and your sanity. In this guide, you’ll find some of the best roach killers for your apartment.
Best Roach Killer for Apartments: What to Look For
Living in an apartment has some challenges when it comes to pest control. You can’t pick your neighbors.
If they let their cats scamper around urinating on everything and never pick up crumbs off the floor, they’re going to attract roaches. And guess what? Those roaches do roam.
Before you know it you have a full-on army of revolting roaches throwing little parties in your kitchen and anywhere else they feel like lounging. But don’t despair.
This guide will show you what to look for so you can pick the best roach killer for your apartment according to how fast it works and how powerful and safe it is.
Harris Boric Acid Roach Killer Powder
Best choice for fast-acting
If you have roaches you don’t want them gone now, you want them gone yesterday. Not all formulas are fast-acting.
They may work well, but if you don’t have the patience to wait two weeks to a month to see results, then you’ll need to pass on them. What you need is a formula that knocks roaches on their backs in a matter of hours—think 72, or three days.
Syngenta Advion Cockroach Gel Bait
Best choice for powerful
Ideally, you want to knock out roaches in one fell swoop. Pick a concentrated formula that doesn’t take any crap from persistent roaches.
Be mindful too that roaches can develop a resistance to products after some time has passed. You may need to be prepared to switch up your weapon of choice to keep them guessing (and dying). Have a backup product in mind in case you need to rotate formulas.
MDX Concepts Organic Home Pest Control Spray
Best choice for non-toxic
You don’t want your furry friends to ingest anything that can make them sick. Nor do you want yourself or your kids to breathe in toxic chemicals.
Sacrificing you or your loved ones’ health to kill pesky insects wouldn’t be worth it. Fortunately, there are well-formulated products that kill roaches without killing you in the process.
Choose a product that’s powerful enough to terminate roaches but that has natural or organic ingredients.
Top 10 Best Roach Killers for Apartments
1. Combat Max 12 Month Roach Killing Bait
Con: May not be pet-friendly
No mess baits: Combat attracts roaches like a flame draws moths. This product knocks out roaches fast.
They’ll be on their backs before you can say sayonara suckas! Your biggest regret may be that the creepy crawlers will kill over too soon to feel your hate.
The downside is that it smells funny. Prevent this from being an issue by placing baking soda in a small tray next to the trap to absorb the odor.
2. Hot Shot Roach Killer
Pro: Kills in hours
Con: Not great for large roaches
Advanced Liquid Bait Technology: Hot Shot kills roaches right where they breed. The bait stations are designed like houses in horror movies—roaches go in but they don’t go out.
Once inside the dome-like death trap, they consume the lethal quick-kill formula. Then it’s lights out for the little punks. Plus, the solution is completely enclosed, so pets and children won't be exposed to it.
On the other hand, it’s a struggle to pull the tab to activate it. If you’re not careful, you’ll have a mess on your hands.
The liquid could spill everywhere—all over your hands, clothes, counter, and floor. Keep this from being an issue by being very careful when you handle this product.
3. Ortho Home Defense Max Indoor Insect Barrier
Pro: Leaves no stains or fumes
Con: May not have the wand
12-month bug control: Ortho Home Defense created a formula that gets the job done without stinking up your place. Plus, the extended reach comfort wand makes it easy for you to spray without bending your back too much.
It also prevents hand fatigue and easily treats hard-to-reach places. If you have pets or other people staying in your apartment you’ll appreciate that they can enter the area once it has dried. Also, the odorless formula can be well-tolerated by people with sensitive noses.
Don’t expect overnight carnage with this product. You may need to spray roaches repeatedly and wait days for the damage to take its toll.
4. Syngenta Advion Cockroach Gel Bait
Con: Formula dries up fast
Highly concentrated: Syngenta’s gel bait will make you wonder how exterminators are still in business. Roaches like it, eat it, and die.
Within hours of laying this bait down, you’ll see roaches in various stages of kicking the bucket. Some will already be dead, others will be turned over and kicking. There'll even be some that will try to crawl up the wall but will be too weak.
But the real glory happens over time. Give it a couple of days to go to work. Then be prepared to see massive casualties.
The downside is that it’s a hit or miss purchase. Some reviewers have complained that this is a fake bait product.
They say that the Advion plain light yellow “baby chick yellow” is the legit buy. The dark-colored formula is the dud. Be prepared to send it back for a refund if you get the dark formula that doesn’t work.
5. MDX Concepts Organic Home Pest Control Spray
Pro: All natural and non-toxic
Con: Not cheap
Long-lasting: Get ready to declare war on your roaches. This fast-acting, organic pest control spray sends those menaces to an early and unexpected grave.
Another perk is that your apartment will smell minty fresh. If you like the scent of 5 Gum’s spearmint flavor, you’ll be a fan of this aroma. This formula doesn’t wreak of chemicals.
On the other hand, the film that is left behind once the product dries can cause animals to have difficulty breathing. Be sure to wipe up any residue so your furry friends will be able to breathe easily.
6. Raid Killer Spray
Pro: Made with lemongrass extract
Con: Very oily
Safe for use around kids and pets: This spray is safe for pets and children. Plus, it kills roaches as well as an exterminator would. Those pests won’t stand a chance when this crashes their party.
The lemongrass scent isn’t light, but it’s not as off-putting as sprays that have a strong “chemical” smell to them.
On the other hand, it leaves wood floors a sticky mess. Keep this from being a problem by using it only near carpeted areas.
7. Harris Boric Acid Roach Killer Powder
Pro: Easy application
Con: May come half full
Food grade lure: Harris created a long-lasting killing machine that continues to finish off roaches weeks after it’s applied, as long as it's kept dry. A fast-acting formula means that those disgusting vermin will die within 72 hours after making initial contact with the powder.
Also, you’ll appreciate that it’s been registered with the Environmental Protection Agency. That means this product is safe for use in homes with people and pets.
The downside is that the dust travels. When you use this powder make sure to sprinkle it lightly instead of shaking it like an old-school polaroid picture.
8. Zap-A-Roach Boric Acid Roach and Ant Killer
Con: May spark allergies
Budget-friendly: You don’t have to worry about ruining your baseboards, flooring, or appliances with Zap-A-Roach. It’s a non-staining compound. Feel free to use this safe product on a variety of surfaces.
It’s toxic to roaches, but not to your home. Since boric acid is odorless, you won’t have to put up with annoying chemical scents invading your apartment.
But you will need to be patient. Boric acid takes a few weeks to do the dirty work of knocking out roach infestations.
You should see results in about a few weeks. Those roaches will be punch drunk poisoned and you’ll be able to enjoy a pest-free apartment.
The downside is that the package may not come wrapped correctly making the contents spill out. Make sure to open the package carefully in case the container wasn’t wrapped well.
9. Vendetta Roach Gel Bait Insecticide
Pro: Powerful formula
Con: Not dog-friendly
Not messy: Vendetta helps you annihilate roaches for good. It doesn’t half-step. So you don’t have to worry about getting a product that only thins roaches out or merely sends those beasts into hiding temporarily.
No more will you have to cringe as those disgusting creatures frolic in your silverware drawer. Long gone are the days of you watching in disbelief as they enjoy the soothing heat in your microwave.
Plus, it’s long-lasting so you can rest easy knowing that several months down the line your apartment will still be roach-free.
On the flip side, the product is labeled as toxic to wildlife. Protect your environment and don’t use this outside.
10. Harris Home Insect Killer
Pro: Gallon-sized product
Con: Annoying odor
EPA Registered: Finding bodies in your kitchen sounds like a bad thing—unless we’re talking roaches. Spray your apartment with this product and those little brown monsters will be a thing of the past.
The body count may be so high that you’ll need to break out your vacuum cleaner to get them up. This odorless formula works like a charm. Another perk is that it’ll continue to kill roaches for weeks after application.
The downside is that the spray nozzle may stop working. Be prepared to pour it from the bottle if that happens.