How To Choose a Pest Control Company
There are several factors that you can take into consideration when choosing the best pest control company for you. Along with a company's qualifications and treatment methods, you might also consider how long it has been in business and what the reviews look like. Finally, you'll likely want to consider the cost of services.
Below, we discuss each of these factors in more detail.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), all pesticide applicators and their supervisors need to be licensed at the state level. The EPA has established minimum standards of competency, and the New Mexico regulatory agencies take care of the issuing, maintaining, and revoking of licenses.
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 employee training is up to date. QualityPro and similar trade organizations also offer other certifications. While not required, these can help demonstrate that a pest control company is reputable.
There are several professional organizations that a pest control company can belong to. Holding membership in organizations such as the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or state-level organizations is not mandatory, but helps show that a company is reputable. When a pest control company joins the NPMA, it gains access to resources, education, and a network of pest professionals with whom to discuss practices and methods.
Professional Experience and Specialties
For the most part, a company will list information like its specialities and years of experience on its website. Online reviews can also tell you whether a company has experience dealing with a particular pest in your area. If you're unable to locate the information you need online, you can reach out to the company directly to get your questions answered.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can browse reviews and recommendations on social media or local review sites, view a company's rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), or check its licensure status through the New Mexico licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Cost is important 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 determine if it fits into your budget. You can also see if it offers a satisfaction guarantee.
Safety and Treatment Methods
When choosing a pest control provider, you want to choose one that will keep you, your family, and your pets safe. You'll likely also prefer a provider that is environmentally-conscious.
All pesticides that will be used (except those that are classified as minimum-risk) are required to be registered with the EPA. Your pest control provider should provide information on all the pesticides that they will be using. They should inform you whether the pesticides are low toxicity or non-toxic, and if not, what safety precautions they plan to take.
Organizations 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 the source of the pest problem and determine whether 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 if needed, and always with other techniques for effective long-term pest management.
- Evaluate outcomes and implement additional pest control as needed.