How To Choose a Pest Control Company
There are several things you can weigh when selecting the best pest control company for you. Important factors can include the company's qualifications, its treatment methods, experience and reviews, and of course the cost of services.
Below, we explore the details of each of these factors.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
All pesticide applicators (and those who supervise them) must be certified at the state level. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established minimum standards of competency, but all pesticide applicators working in the state of New Hampshire must be licensed via 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 obtain this certification, a company must prove that its methods are more environmentally friendly and that its employees receive up-to-date training. Other various certifications can be earned through QualityPro and similar trade organizations.
A pest control company can also hold membership in professional organizations. Companies can obtain membership in the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), or state-level organizations. NPMA membership provides companies with access to education, resources, and a network of other pest professionals. While not required, membership in professional organizations helps back up a company's reputability.
Professional Experience and Specialties
You can look at a company's years in business to help determine how much experience it has dealing with various pests. You can also look at its website or read customer reviews to determine whether it has adequate experience with the species of pests you are dealing with. If this information is not available online, speaking with a company representative is a great way to learn more.
Reviews and Recommendations
Resources that can be used to verify a company's legitimacy include the Better Business Bureau (BBB), social media, and local review sites. Additionally, you can confirm the status of a company's license via the New Hampshire licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Cost is an important consideration when choosing a pest control company. Cost may be determined by the size of your house, your location, the type of pest being treated, and other factors.
A pest control company may offer a free on-site estimate to help you figure out if it fits into your budget. You can also see if it offers a guarantee of satisfaction.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Your choice of pest control provider might be influenced by how environmentally friendly a provider's practices are, as well as how safe its methods are around your family and pets.
You want to ensure that you understand the precautions for the pesticides being used in your house, for the sake of your family, your pets, and yourself. Your pest control technician should provide information about any pesticides they will be using, whether they are low toxicity or non-toxic, and (if not) what safety measures they have in place. All pesticides (except minimum-risk ones) must be registered with the EPA.
You can ask if your technician will begin with more natural and lower-toxicity options before trying harsher chemicals.
Many companies are using Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to reduce personal or environmental risk when treating pest infestations. The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Identify problem pests and determine if immediate action is needed.
- Determine the best and safest course of action.
- Use a combination of biological, cultural, mechanical, and physical controls to manage the pest problem.
- Use chemical controls only if needed, and always in combination with other controls for effective long-term pest management.
- Observe the results and continue with additional pest control as needed.