Neglected tropical diseases affect more than one billion people worldwide. The populations most impacted by such diseases are typically the most resource-limited. Mathematical modeling of disease transmission and cost-effectiveness analyses can play a central role in maximizing the utility of limited resources for neglected tropical diseases. We review the contributions that mathematical modeling has made to optimizing intervention strategies of vector-borne neglected diseases. We propose directions forward in the modeling of these diseases, including integrating new knowledge of vector and pathogen ecology, incorporating evolutionary responses to interventions, and expanding the scope of sensitivity analysis in order to achieve robust results.