How To Choose a Pest Control Company
There are a number of things that you can weigh when choosing the best pest control company for you. The qualifications of and treatment methods used by a company are important to consider, as are its years of experience and what other customers have said. Of course, you also want to consider cost.
Below, we discuss each of these factors in more detail.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
Per the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), all pesticide applicators and those that supervise them need to be certified at the state level. The EPA does set minimum standards of competency, but all pesticide applicators in California should be licensed through the proper state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
One certification that pest control companies can earn is the GreenPro Service Certification, which requires a company to show that its practices are environmentally friendly and that its employees receive up-to-date training. QualityPro and similar trade organizations also offer additional certifications. While not required, these can help demonstrate that a company is reputable.
Pest control companies can also become members of various professional organizations. Being a member of organizations like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or state-level organizations is not required, but helps verify a company's reputability. The NPMA gives companies access to resources, education, and a network of professionals with whom to discuss methods and practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
The number of years that a company has been in business can tell you something about its experience dealing with the pests that live in Rancho Cucamonga. Customer reviews or the company's website itself can also inform you whether it has the skills and experience necessary to deal with your particular pests. If you cannot find the answers to your questions online, calling a representative is an easy way to learn about the company's areas of expertise.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can browse reviews and recommendations on local review sites or social media, look up a company's Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating, or check its licensure status through the California licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
The cost of pest control can vary based on things like the type of pest being treated, the size of your house, your location, and other factors.
When considering the cost of services, you should first look into whether a company offers free on-site estimates as part of its services. This can inform you whether the company fits into your budget. Also take into account a company's guarantees: If the problem is not resolved, or returns, does the company promise to offer additional treatment until the issue is resolved satisfactorily?
Safety and Treatment Methods
Your preferences regarding safety for yourself, any children or pets, and the environment may affect which provider and treatment methods you choose.
Your pest control provider should be able to explain the safety precautions of any and all pesticides that will be used in your home. They should be able to answer questions as to whether the pesticides are low toxicity or non-toxic; if they are not, they should explain what safety precautions will be in place to protect you, your family, and your pets. Pesticides that pose greater than a minimum risk must be registered with the EPA.
Many companies have started offering options for more environmentally friendly methods of pest control before relying on harsh pesticides.
One common method for 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 needed.
- Determine the best and safest course of action.
- Use a combination of physical, biological, mechanical, and cultural controls to manage the pest problem.
- Use chemical controls only when required, and always in combination with other solutions for effective long-term pest management.
- Observe the results and provide additional pest control as needed.