How To Choose a Pest Control Company
There are several factors you can consider when choosing the best pest control company for you. You might consider a company's qualifications and treatment methods in addition to its years of experience and customer reviews. Of course, there is also the cost of services to consider.
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, as well as those that supervise them, should be licensed via the appropriate New Jersey regulatory agencies. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established minimum standards of competency, but issuing, maintaining, and revoking licensing is handled at the state level.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
A pest control company can optionally apply for certifications from trade organizations like QualityPro to support its methods and standards. One particular certification is the GreenPro Service Certification, which is awarded when a company can demonstrate that its methods are more environmentally friendly. A company that receives this certification also needs to maintain certain employee training standards.
There are various professional organizations that a pest control company can be a member of. Becoming a member of an organization like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or a state-level organization gives companies access to education and resources, in addition to a professional network to compare best practices with. Belonging to organizations like these is not mandatory, but it can help show that a company follows industry best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
In general, a company provides information like years of experience and specialities on its website. Local reviews can also inform you as to whether a company has experience dealing with a specific pest. If you're unable to locate the information you need online, you can contact a company representative directly to get the answers to your questions.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can read reviews and recommendations on social media or local review sites, verify a company's rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), or check the status of its license through the New Jersey licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Cost is an important consideration when picking 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.
Certain pest control companies 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
Your choice of pest control company might be affected by how environmentally friendly a company's practices are, as well as how safe its methods are around your family and pets.
It's important to understand the precautions for the pesticides being used around your house, for the sake of you, your family, and your pets. Your pest control technician should be able to provide information about any pesticides they will be using, whether they are low toxicity or non-toxic, and (if not) what safety measures will be in place. All pesticides (except minimum-risk ones) need to be registered with the EPA.
Companies often begin with more environmentally friendly options before employing harsh pesticides, using a technique called Integrated Pest Management (IPM). When using IPM, the following steps are taken:
- Identify problem pests and determine if immediate action is needed.
- Decide on the 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 along with other methods for effective long-term pest management.
- Assess the outcome and provide additional pest control as needed.