How To Choose a Pest Control Company
When choosing a pest control company, you want to find the best one for you. Some things you might consider include licensing and qualifications, treatment methods, years of experience, customer reviews, and cost.
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, as well as those that supervise them, need to be licensed via the appropriate Texas regulatory agencies. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established minimum standards of competency, while providing, maintaining, and revoking licensure is handled at the state level.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Pest control companies can obtain optional certifications from trade organizations like QualityPro. While not required, they can help you evaluate 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.
Pest control companies can also obtain membership in professional organizations. When a company joins an organization such as the National Pest Management Association(NPMA) (or a state-level organization), it gains access to resources, education, and a network of other pest professionals with whom to compare treatment methods. This can offer additional peace of mind that a company follows industry best practices.
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 browse its website or peruse customer reviews to decide whether it has the right kind of experience handling the type of pests you are looking to get rid of. If this information is not available online, speaking with a company representative is a great way to learn more.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can view a company's reviews and rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), read social media and local review sites to hear what other people are saying, or verify its license standing via the Texas licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
For many people, cost is one of the main deciding factors when picking a company for pest control. Cost can be influenced by factors like the size of your house, the type of pest being treated, and your location.
You can take into consideration whether a specific company offers free on-site estimates (to determine if it fits your budget), and what sort 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
It's important to consider safety when selecting a pest control provider. You might also prefer a provider who uses more natural, environmentally friendly methods.
Make sure to ask your pest control provider if they plan to use low toxicity or non-toxic pesticides, and if not, what kind of precautionary measures they plan to take. All pesticides that are not considered minimum-risk chemicals need to be registered with the EPA. Your pest control provider should be able to supply you with information about all chemicals they plan on using.
Many companies are now trialing options for more environmentally friendly pest control techniques before jumping into using harsh pesticides.
One popular way of making pest control safer and greener is Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Figure out what pests are causing the problem and determine whether immediate action is required.
- 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 when absolutely necessary, and always along with other techniques for effective long-term pest management.
- Observe the results and implement additional pest control as needed.