How To Choose a Pest Control Company
Hiring the best company for you is the most important step in the pest control process. You may consider a company's qualifications and treatment methods in addition to its customer reviews and years of experience. Of course, there is also the cost of services to consider.
Below, we explore the details of each of these factors.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
While the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets the minimum standards of competency for pesticide applicators, licensing is taken care of at the state level. All pesticide applicators (and those who supervise them) in Kansas must be licensed by all the necessary state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
There are additional optional certifications that can help demonstrate that a pest control company is reputable. One of these is the GreenPro Service Certification. To earn this certification, a company must show that its methods are more environmentally friendly and that its employee training is up to date. Other various certifications can be obtained through QualityPro and similar trade organizations.
A pest control company can also hold membership in various professional organizations. Pest control companies can join state-level organizations in addition to national organizations like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). By being a member of these optional organizations, a company helps support its reputability and gains access to resources, education, and a network of professionals to compare best practices with.
Professional Experience and Specialties
Looking at a company's website can tell you how long it has been in business and what type of pests it specializes in eliminating. Local reviews can also offer some insight into a company's experience dealing with a specific pest. If you can't find this information online, you can try contacting the company directly.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can look at a company's rating and reviews on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), check out local review sites and social media to learn what other people are saying, or verify its license standing through the Kansas licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
The cost of pest control can vary based on things like the size of your house, your location, the type of pest being treated, and other factors.
When considering the cost of services, you should first look into whether a company includes free on-site estimates as part of its process. This can inform you whether the company fits into your budget. Also consider a company's guarantees: If the problem is not fixed, or returns, does the company promise to offer additional treatments until the problem is satisfactorily resolved?
Safety and Treatment Methods
When it comes to choosing a pest control provider, you want to select one that will help keep you, your family, and your pets safe. You might also prefer a provider that is environmentally-conscious.
All pesticides used by your company (except those that are classified as minimum-risk) must be registered with the EPA. Your pest control provider should be able to provide information on each pesticide they are using. They should inform you whether these chemicals are low toxicity or non-toxic, and if not, what safety precautions will be in place.
Companies looking to reduce their use of chemical pesticides often implement procedures such as Integrated Pest Management (IPM). Using IPM involves a series of steps:
- Identify problem pests and assess whether immediate action is needed.
- Decide on the safest course of action.
- Use a combination of mechanical, physical, biological, and cultural controls to manage the pest problem.
- Employ chemical controls only when required, and always with other techniques for effective long-term pest management.
- Evaluate outcomes and implement additional pest control as needed.