How To Choose a Pest Control Company
It's important to choose the best pest control company for you. You may 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 Oklahoma regulatory agencies. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets minimum standards of competency, while issuing, maintaining, and revoking licensing is handled at the state level.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Pest control companies can obtain optional certifications from QualityPro or similar trade organizations. These certifications can help you assess the quality of a company's products. For example, the GreenPro Service Certification indicates comprehensive and effective pest control treatment that is safer for people and the environment.
There are various professional organizations that pest control companies can be members of. A pest control company can obtain membership in 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 other professionals with whom to compare best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
The amount of time that a company has been in business can give you some insight into its experience dealing with the pests that live in Tulsa. Online reviews or the company's website itself can also inform you whether it has the experience needed to eliminate the particular pests that are plaguing you. If the answers to your questions aren't available online, calling a representative is a great way to learn about the company's areas of expertise.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can check a company's rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), look for reviews on local review sites or social media, or check the standing of its license via the Oklahoma licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
For many people, cost is one of the most important factors when looking for pest control services. Cost can be influenced by factors like the size of your house, your location, and the type of pest being treated.
You can take into consideration whether a certain company offers free on-site estimates (to determine if it fits your budget), and what kind of guarantees are provided. Often, a company will guarantee that if your pest problem isn't fixed by its treatment, it will continue to treat until it is.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Your preferences regarding safety for yourself, your children, your pets, and the environment might affect which provider and treatment methods you choose.
You want to ensure that you understand the precautions for the pesticides being used around your house, for the sake of your family, your pets, and yourself. Your pest control provider should be capable of providing information about any pesticides they intend to use, whether they are low toxicity or non-toxic, and (if not) what safety measures they have in place. All pesticides (except minimum-risk ones) need to be registered with the EPA.
Many companies have begun using more natural treatment methods before (or in place of) harsh chemical pesticides. Some employ a program called Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Figure out what pests are causing the problem and determine if immediate action is needed.
- Decide on the safest course of action.
- Manage the pest problem using a combination of biological, cultural, physical, and mechanical controls.
- Use chemical controls only if needed, and always in combination with other controls for effective long-term pest management.
- Evaluate outcomes and provide additional pest control as needed.