How To Choose a Pest Control Company
When picking a pest control company, you want to find the right one to meet your needs. Things you might consider include qualifications and licensing, treatment methods, years of experience, customer reviews, and cost.
Below, we discuss each of these factors in more detail.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
All pesticide applicators (and those that supervise them) are required to be certified at the state level. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets minimum standards of competency, but all pesticide applicators working in the state of California should be licensed via the necessary state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Pest control companies can optionally obtain additional certifications like the GreenPro Service Certification. This certification is awarded once a company has shown that its treatment methods are more environmentally friendly and demonstrated that it also holds itself up to certain other standards, such as up-to-date training for employees. A company can also earn other certifications from trade organizations like QualityPro to further back up its practices and methods.
There are various professional organizations in which pest control companies can hold membership. When a company becomes a member of an organization such as the National Pest Management Association(NPMA) (or a state-level organization), it gets access to resources, education, and a network of other pest experts with whom to compare methods. This can offer extra peace of mind that a company follows industry best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
The number of years that a company has been in business can give you some insight into its experience dealing with the pests that live in Campbell. Online reviews or the company's own website can also help you figure out whether it has the experience necessary to deal with your particular pests. If the answers to your questions aren't available online, calling a representative is a great way to learn about the company's areas of expertise.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can browse reviews and recommendations on local review sites or social media, view a company's Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating, or check the status of its license through the California licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
It's important to think about cost when hiring someone for pest control. Cost can be affected influenced by your location, the size of your house, the type of pest being treated, and other factors.
Companies will often offer free on-site estimates as part of their process, to help you decide whether it fits into your budget. You can also ask whether a company offers a satisfaction guarantees, meaning that if your pest problem is not solved by the initial treatment, it will continue returning until it is.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Keeping yourself, your family and your pets safe is an important concern when picking a pest control provider. You might also prefer one that uses environmentally friendly methods.
Your pest control provider should be able to explain the safety precautions of any and all pesticides they plan to use. They should be able to clarify whether the pesticides are low toxicity or non-toxic; if they are not, they should explain what safety precautions will be used to protect you, your family, and your pets. All pesticides that pose more than a minimum risk should be registered with the EPA.
Many companies have started making the switch to using more natural treatment methods before, or in place of, harsh chemical pesticides. Some follow a program called Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Figure out what pests are causing the problem and determine if immediate action is needed.
- Decide on the safest course of action.
- Use a combination of biological, cultural, mechanical, and physical controls to manage the pest problem.
- Employ chemical controls only when absolutely necessary, and always along with other solutions for effective long-term pest management.
- Evaluate outcomes and provide additional pest control as needed.