Whenever you hire a pest management professional, you must do some homework. You don’t want to hand over your hard earned cash to just anybody. You want quality and value. So, it is important to do your due diligence before you choose a pest control company.
What to Look For When Hiring a Pest Control Company
Here are a few things to look for when hiring a pest control professional.
- Answers or returns phone calls or emails. Make sure you choose a company that is responsive to your inquiries. Timely responses to communication is important.
- Proposes treatment options and discusses them with the homeowner. Does the technician take the time to outline your treatment options? Also, reputable companies are willing and able to share copies of labels/ingredients upon request.
- Gives options. If possible, the company will offer different options for treatment/trapping/etc to help you make an informed decision.
- Listens to customers’ concerns. A company that wants your business should listen to your concerns and allow you to ask questions. As a customer, you are also responsible to listen to the instructions for treatment and follow through.
- Clearly outlines expectations and guarantees. Make sure your technician clearly delineates expectations. Sometimes guarantees can be offered and sometimes they can’t. The right company will put things in writing.
- Licensed/Certified. Choose a company that is licensed and certified. You may be able to find it on their website, but you can also ask. Do all technicians receive the same training or do some have specializations?
- Insured. Make sure that the company is insured. This is extremely important for the company as well as for you as the homeowner. Make sure that they have liability coverage.
- Affiliated with professional pest control associations. If a company belongs to professional pest control associations, it is a sign that they are staying up in their field and keeping up with current trends and expertise.
- Specializations & Methodology. Check into the company’s specializations and methodology. Do they practice eco-friendly processes? Do they specialize in rodents? Ask about their philosophy.
- Timely & respectful. Find a company that comes when expected (or within the range given). Look at how they treat you and your property.
- How long they have been in business. A long track record can often speak to a happy client base.
- Better Business Bureau and ratings. One way to find out about a company is ratings with the Better Business Bureau or other online sites.
- Ask others. Even better than online ratings is word of mouth from friends or, even better, neighbors. If those around you with similar needs appreciate their service, that is a good gauge of the company.
Beware of . . .
- High pressure sales
If a technician arrives unexpectedly and claims to show you pests or insects just found in your neighborhood as evidence of a problem, beware. If they expect you to sign immediately by claiming your house is structurally unsound, beware. If they target the elderly or infirm who live alone, beware.
- Package “deals”
If a company claims to do pest control as a side “deal” to general home repair or tree trimming, beware. If they have “extra” material left from another job and offer a discount, beware. If they quote a “per gallon” price, beware (as it can take hundreds of gallons of diluted insecticide).
- Unlisted/non-working phone number
If you are unable to get a hold of the company, beware. If they can’t show you a license or certification, beware.
- “Secret formulas”
If a company claims to have a secret formula, beware. (All pesticide products must be registered by the U.S. EPA and have a list of active ingredients.)
- Claims to be endorsed by a government agency (Like US EPA, state department of agriculture, etc).
Government agencies DO NOT endorse commercial companies or products. The company can (and should) meet the government standards, but they can’t claim to be endorsed by them.
Taking a little bit of time to find the right pest control company can pay huge dividends for your peace of mind.