How To Choose a Pest Control Company
When hiring a pest control company, there are several things you can consider to make sure that you're choosing the right one for you. You might take into consideration a company's qualifications and treatment methods as well as its customer reviews and years of experience. Of course, there is also the cost of services to consider.
Below, we dive into detail on 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) has established minimum standards of competency for pesticide applicators, licensure is taken care of at the state level. All pesticide applicators (and those who supervise them) in Kansas should be licensed by all the necessary state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
One certification that pest control companies can earn is the GreenPro Service Certification, which requires that a company show that its practices are environmentally friendly and that its employees receive up-to-date training. QualityPro and similar trade organizations also offer other certifications. While not required, these can help demonstrate that a company is reputable.
Pest control companies can also belong to various professional organizations. When a company becomes a member of an organization such as the National Pest Management Association(NPMA) (or a state-level organization), it receives access to education, resources, and a network of other pest experts with whom to compare treatment methods. This can offer added peace of mind that a company follows industry best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
Typically, a company displays information like years of experience and specialities on its website. Local reviews can also help you figure out if a company has experience dealing with a particular pest in your area. If you can't get the information you need online, you can reach out to the company directly to get the answers to your questions.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can view a company's rating and reviews on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), read local review sites and social media to hear what homeowners near you think, or verify its license standing via the Kansas licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Cost is often a deciding factor when choosing a pest control company. Cost may be determined by your location, the size of your house, the type of pest being treated, and other factors.
A pest control company may offer a free on-site estimate to help you decide if it fits into your budget. You can also check to see if it offers a satisfaction guarantee.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Keeping yourself, your family and your pets safe is an important concern when choosing a pest control provider. You might also prefer one that employs environmentally friendly practices.
You should ask your pest control provider if the chemicals they're using are low toxicity or non-toxic, and if not, what precautionary measures they plan to take. Any pesticides that are not minimum-risk chemicals must be registered with the EPA. Your pest control provider will be able to provide information about all chemicals that they plan to use.
You can ask if your technician will start with more natural and lower-toxicity options before employing harsher chemicals.
Many companies have begun to use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to eliminate pests while reducing personal and environmental risks. The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Figure out what pests are causing the problem and determine if immediate action is required.
- Determine the best and safest course of action.
- Use a combination of physical, cultural, biological, and mechanical controls to manage the pest problem.
- Employ chemical controls only if needed, and always with other techniques for effective long-term pest management.
- Evaluate outcomes and provide additional pest control as needed.