Pests in the home are never welcome, especially if you’re dealing with ants, roaches, mice, termites, or bed bugs. Luckily, pest control companies can help take care of these infestations for you. With so many providers to choose from, it can be difficult for homeowners to know which is the best pest control company for them.
That’s why the This Old House Reviews Team analyzed dozens of pest control services and narrowed down our top picks to the four best. These companies offer high-quality pest control and provide protection from specialty nuisances like termites and bed bugs. Read on to learn more about each company.
Top 4 Best Pest Control Companies in 2021
- Terminix: Best Overall
- Orkin: Best for Urgent Service
- Aptive: Most Customizable
- Bulwark: Best Customer Service
Compare Pest Control Companies
Let’s see how the best pest control companies stack up against each other.
The best pest control companies’ costs vary because each company’s plan is unique, and there are several factors that determine what you’ll pay:
- Pest type—Some pests are more difficult to eliminate than others.
- Degree of infestation—Serious infestations will cost more to resolve than a smaller pest population.
- Number of treatments—If you need several treatments, it will cost more than one standard treatment.
- Property size—The larger your property, the more you’ll have to pay for pest control services.
On average, the annual cost of general pest control plans for a 2,000-square-foot home in Houston, Texas are about $550–$700.
1. Terminix: Best Overall
- Serves over 2.8 million customers
- Provides an instant online chat
- Offers great service guarantees
Why We Chose Terminix
Terminix has more than 90 years of experience in the pest control industry and services 2.8 million residential and commercial customers worldwide. It offers easy online customer service with an efficient real-time chat function, and it’s generally the most affordable of the pest control companies. Terminix offers general pest control for common household critters like wasps and moths, as well as special programs for termites, bed bugs, mosquitoes, and ticks.
Score Breakdown for Terminix
We chose Terminix as one of the best pest control companies. We give it a score of 98.5 out of 100, the highest of any company we've rated. To get a free quote from Terminix, call (866) 569-4035 or fill out this simple form.
2. Orkin: Best for Urgent Service
- Has more than a century of pest control experience
- Provides same-day service if you call before 2 pm
- Offers technologically advanced solutions
Why We Chose Orkin
Orkin is a trusted name in the pest control industry, having been in business for more than 100 years. The pest control company services 1.7 million residential and commercial customers across the country, using its Integrated Pest Management Approach. Orkin protects against up to 20 household common pests, including ants, roaches, mice, and spiders, under its general pest control plan. The company also offers targeted control for termites and bed bugs, using proprietary technology and products.
Score Breakdown for Orkin
We believe Orkin offers the most customer resources. We give the company a score of 94 out of 100, the second-highest of all the pest control companies we've ranked. To get a free quote from Orkin, call 877-868-1416 or fill out this online form.
3. Aptive: Most Customizable
- Is one of the fastest-growing pest control companies
- Sends technicians to your home to address any issues between scheduled visits
- Gives back to the community
Why We Chose Aptive
While Aptive is new to the pest control industry, the company has been ranked as one of Entrepreneur Magazine’s Best Companies in America. As a member of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program, Aptive engages with communities to build environmental awareness and reduce pesticide risk. The company has made a fast impact in the pest control industry and ranks high on the Pest Control Technology Top 100.
Score Breakdown for Aptive
Aptive is one of the fastest-growing companies in the industry and we appreciate its commitment to customizing treatments based on consumers' pest control needs. For these reasons, we rate Aptive a 91 out of 100. To get a free quote from Aptive, call (855) 904-0143 or fill out a quick form online.
4. Bulwark Exterminating: Best Customer Service
- Guarantees to return all calls and emails within 48 hours
- Offers free follow-up service if pests return after the initial extermination
- Prioritizes green, non-toxic pest control solutions
Why We Chose Bulwark Exterminating
Bulwark Exterminating is a family-owned pest control company with over 22 years of experience in the industry. It offers general pest control and termite control services to areas in 12 states, including Arizona, Georgia, Missouri, New Mexico, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Washington. Bulwark Exterminating’s customer service comes highly recommended by hundreds of existing customers who reference the quality care, timeliness, and professionalism of its pest control specialists.
Score Breakdown for Bulwark Exterminating
We believe that if you have a serious pest control issue, your home is safest in the hands of professionals. The best pest control professionals in the industry are Terminix, Orkin, Aptive, and Bulwark. Each one offers comprehensive pest control, decades of experience, and expert technicians. These companies are some of the most common household names out there—and for good reason.
Terminix values customer service highly, which is clear through its real-time online chat function. Orkin offers the most customer resources, helping educate customers on what to expect from the process. Aptive offers customizable plans to customers and tailors the pest management approach to fit your specific pest control needs. And, Bulwark prioritizes customer satisfaction with multiple promises and guarantees that others don’t offer.
Ultimately, we recommend getting quotes from at least three companies to help determine your best fit.
Compare Pest Control Companies
|Get a free quote||Terminix.com||Orkin.com||GoAptive.com||BulwarkPestControl.com|
|Our overall score out of 100||98.5||94||91||83|
|Superlative||Best Overall||Best for Urgent Service||Most Customizable||Best Customer Service|
|Annual cost for general pest control||$550–$700||$575 (average)||$560–$620||$600–$750|
How To Choose the Best Pest Control Company
When choosing the best pest control company, there are several important factors to consider.
Type of pests
Perhaps the most important factor to consider is the type of pests you want remediation for or protection against. Are you looking for a package that covers a variety of common household pests, or a targeted plan that only tackles mosquito control? Some providers offer a broad range of plans, while others offer specialized treatments.
Your budget is a key consideration, and it’s always a good idea to shop around for several quotes. While pest control companies might give you a general estimate over the phone, they’ll need to perform an in-home inspection to present the most accurate quote.
It’s also important to research the billing process. Some providers do one-time payments, while others follow a standardized billing cycle.
Different companies offer different plan schedules—not all companies offer plans in monthly, bi-monthly, and quarterly intervals. Make sure you choose a plan that has visits just as frequently as you want them.
Most pest control companies offer a service guarantee, but the terms can differ from one company to the next. Some companies might offer to return between visits at no extra cost if bugs persist. Other providers might offer to return, as well as extend a full refund for the unsuccessful treatment if you remain a customer.
Orkin offers a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee. This ensures that if pests return to your home between scheduled visits, an Orkin specialist will perform another treatment at no extra cost. If the pest issue can’t be resolved, Orkin will refund your most recent service payment as long as you remain a customer.
Terminix provides different guarantees, depending on the service, and offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee for its general pest control plan. If pests show up between your visits, a Terminix technician will return at no extra cost. If you aren’t 100% satisfied, Terminix will refund your latest treatment.
For termites, Terminix offers an Ultimate Protection Guarantee for qualifying homes. If your home qualifies, you never have to pay for treatment or repairs from new termite damage, as long as you maintain your plan.
Terminix offers a comprehensive Bed Bug Guarantee. If you find bed bugs in a treated area within 30 days, Terminix will return to perform additional treatments for free. If you buy a mattress encasement for every mattress and box spring in your house, Terminix will increase that guarantee to 90 days.
A company’s reputation says a lot about their trustworthiness, competence, and reliability. To find one with the best quality of service, look into expert reviews and a company’s history in the industry. A company with decades of experience and a proven track record may do a better job than a newcomer.
Are Pest Control Companies Worth It?
If you’re experiencing a full-blown pest infestation, it may be worth it to call in a professional pest control company. Most pest control companies offer a general plan that covers all of the common household issues. A pest control company will inspect your home before creating a tailored treatment plan and returning regularly to monitor the situation.
The best pest control companies have highly trained technicians who are equipped with commercial-grade products that homeowners don’t have access to. With a pest control company, there’s no guesswork: the experts know how to apply the products, how often, and are trained in continual home monitoring. Instead of performing research on your own, you can hire a pest control company with proven results.
Additionally, most pest control companies will offer a guarantee and return at no extra cost to remedy your pest issue. There’s no way you can guarantee your own treatment will be effective.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does a pest control company do?
Pest control companies inspect your home, develop treatment plans, treat infestations, help protect against future infestations, and monitor your home. Most pest control companies offer a general pest control plan that tackles common household pests like ants, roaches, and mice. Many companies will offer targeted services for mosquitoes and ticks, and specialty services for termites and bed bugs. Pest control companies use top-of-the-line equipment and products, and can make recommendations on how to ensure your home isn’t susceptible to an infestation.
What is the average cost for pest control service?
The cost for pest control services will depend on a variety of factors: the type of pest you’re dealing with, the degree of the infestation, the number of treatments you’ll need, and the size of your home.
Different companies offer different plans, even for “general pest control,” so it’s challenging to find an exact average. According to our sample quotes, the average cost for general pest control for a 2,000-square-foot home in Houston, Texas, would be $683. However, this might not be applicable in all cases.
What is included in pest control?
Pest control companies offer protection against different pests, depending on the plan you choose and treatment you need. Most general pest control plans cover pests like ants, roaches, mice, stinging insects, and earwigs. Other plans target mosquitoes, ticks, termites, and bed bugs. Pest control companies start with an inspection before developing a treatment plan and monitoring your home routinely in quarterly or bi-monthly intervals.
There are three types of pest control—preventative, chemical, and traps. Some pest control companies include integrated pest management (IPM), which involves the creation of physical barriers and improved sanitation practices. Other common pest control techniques include insecticides, baits, and mechanical traps.
Is monthly pest control necessary?
It depends on the degree of your pest problem and concerns. Most pest control companies we’ve reviewed do not offer a monthly schedule. Quarterly visits are the most common, followed by bi-monthly.
How do pest control companies treat termites?
In general, pest control companies start off with a free termite inspection, carefully evaluating common access points, cracks, and crevices. Then, they’ll develop a tailored treatment plan to address your termite infestation, if you have one.
The specific treatment process varies from company to company. However, it usually involves liquid termiticides, fipronil or imidacloprid, and termite bait systems. In extreme cases, pest control companies will need to fumigate your home. Baiting works well for subterranean termites, whereas fumigation is most effective against drywood termites.
Additionally, the exact products to treat termites will differ from company to company. For example, Orkin uses proprietary Orkinfoam, while Terminix has moved away from foams, according to a representative we spoke to.
How long does it take for an exterminator to get rid of roaches?
It depends on how extreme the infestation is. In general, it should take your pest control specialist approximately two weeks to eradicate roaches. If a second treatment is needed, it might take longer.
How We Chose the Best Pest Control Companies
The This Old House Reviews Team is committed to providing unbiased and comprehensive reviews for our readers. This means earning your trust through transparency and having the data to back up our ratings and recommendations. With that in mind, we spent time creating an objective rating system to score each best pest control company. Here’s what that review process looks like:
- We contact every pest control company via phone and online chat (if available), talking to representatives. We get quotes, ask questions, and fully understand each company’s pest control plans.
- We test the customer service, including factors such as wait times, friendliness, and problem-solving ability.
- We check and update all of the data and metrics on the companies on a regular basis to ensure we have the most current and accurate information.
With all of that data, we created a rating system to score each pest control company. Our rating system is a weighted, 100-point scale on the following factors:
- Plan options (35): Every home and every pest problem has its specific needs when it comes to prevention and remediation. Companies with multiple plans and service offerings were given higher scores than those without.
- State Availability (5): Where you live determines which providers are available. Companies available in more states were rated higher than those with less.
- Trustworthiness (15): We consider companies that offer service guarantees and others more trustworthy and therefore scored higher.
- Customer Service (35): This factor is based on our own research from calling providers, as well as their availability and guarantees for responses.
- Additional Benefits (10): Companies who offer things like information about the products they use, have an app for customers, and other benefits were given higher ratings.
In summary, the This Old House Reviews Team reviewed over 40 companies to select this list of the best pest control companies. Our researchers check and update our data on all 40 companies each month to ensure the most accurate information.
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