How To Choose a Pest Control Company
The most important step in the pest control process is hiring the right company for you. You may take into consideration a company's qualifications, treatment methods, years of experience, customer reviews, and service prices.
Below, we discuss each factor 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 their supervisors need to be certified at the state level. The EPA sets minimum standards of competency, but all Illinois pesticide applicators must be licensed through the proper state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Obtaining additional optional certifications can help demonstrate that a pest control company is reputable. One example is the GreenPro Service Certification. To receive this certification, a company must prove that its methods are more environmentally friendly and that its employees receive up-to-date training. Other various certifications can be obtained through QualityPro and similar trade organizations.
Pest control companies can also join various professional organizations. Membership in organizations like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or state-level organizations is not required, but helps verify a company's reputability. When a pest control company joins the NPMA, it gains access to education, resources, and a network of other professionals with whom to discuss practices and methods.
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 various pests. Online reviews or the company's own website can also help you figure out whether it has the experience needed 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
Resources that can be used to verify a company's legitimacy include local review sites, social media, and the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Additionally, you can verify the status of a company's license via the Illinois licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
It's important to think about cost when hiring someone for pest control. Cost can be affected influenced by the type of pest being treated, the size of your house, your location, and other factors.
Many companies offer free on-site estimates before starting work, 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
When it comes to picking a pest control provider, you want to choose one that will keep you, your family, and your pets safe. You'll likely also prefer an environmentally-conscious provider.
It's important to understand the precautions for the pesticides being used around your home, for the sake of you, your family, and your pets. Your pest control provider should be capable of providing information about any pesticides they plan to use, whether they are low toxicity or non-toxic, and (if not) what safety measures they plan to take. All pesticides (except minimum-risk ones) must be registered with the EPA.
Many companies are using options for more environmentally friendly pest control techniques before employing harsh pesticides.
One popular method for making pest control safer and greener is Integrated Pest Management (IPM). The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Identify problem pests and assess whether immediate action is required.
- Determine the best and safest course of action.
- Manage the pest problem using a combination of biological, cultural, mechanical, and physical controls.
- Use chemical controls only when absolutely necessary, and always along with other controls for effective long-term pest management.
- Assess the outcome and provide additional pest control as needed.