How To Choose a Pest Control Company
When choosing a pest control company, there are several factors you can consider to be sure you choose the best one for you. You might take into consideration 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 dive into detail on each of these factors.
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 those that supervise them must be licensed at the state level. The EPA maintains minimum competency standards, and the Wisconsin regulatory agencies take care of the issuing, maintaining, and revoking of licenses.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
An optional certification that may be worth looking for is the GreenPro Service Certification. In order to receive this certification, a pest control company must both show that its practices are more environmentally friendly and maintain certain training standards for its technicians. Companies can obtain other certifications from QualityPro or similar trade organizations to further back up their work.
There are several professional organizations that pest control companies can be members of. When a company obtains membership in an organization like the National Pest Management Association(NPMA) (or a state-level organization), it gets access to education, resources, and a network of other pest control professionals with whom to compare methods. This can offer extra peace of mind that a company is following industry best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
How long a company has been in business can tell you something about its experience dealing with the pests that live in Janesville. Online reviews or the company's own website can also inform you whether it has the experience necessary to deal with your particular pests. If you can't find the information you need online, reaching out to the company directly is an easy way to learn more.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can look for reviews and recommendations on social media or local review sites, look up a company's rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), or check the status of its license through the Wisconsin licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Cost is probably high on your list of priorities when hiring a pest control company. Cost can be affected influenced by your location, the type of pest being treated, the size of your house, and other factors.
Often, companies will offer free on-site estimates at the beginning of their process, to help you determine whether it fits into your budget. You can also ask whether a company offers a satisfaction guarantees, meaning that if your pest problem is not solved by the initial treatment, it will continue returning until it is.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Your preferences regarding safety for yourself, any children or pets, and the environment can affect the provider and the treatment methods you choose.
You can ask your pest control technician if they will be using low toxicity or non-toxic pesticides—if not, ask what precautionary measures will be in place. Any pesticide that poses greater than minimum risk must be registered with the EPA. Your pest technician should provide information about all pesticides used, and how safe they are around people and pets.
Many companies are using options for more environmentally friendly methods of pest control before relying on harsh pesticides.
One common 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 assess whether immediate action is required.
- Decide on the safest course of action.
- Manage the pest problem using a combination of mechanical, physical, biological, and cultural controls.
- Use chemical controls only if needed, and always with other solutions for effective long-term pest management.
- Observe the results and implement additional pest control as needed.